Harold Prince, Charles Strouse and Thomas Meehan Developing Diamond as Big as the Ritz for Broadway
By Michael Gioia
Tony Award winner Harold Prince is developing The Diamond as Big as the Ritz — a musical adaptation of the short story of the same name by F. Scott Fitzgerald — that will be written by Tony-winning Annie collaborators Charles Strouse and Thomas Meehan, according to the New York Post.
The show, which is reportedly being developed for Broadway, will feature a score by Strouse (Annie, Charlie and Algernon, Rags, Nick & Nora) and a book by Meehan (Annie, The Producers, Hairspray, Cry-Baby). Eric Price will co-write lyrics with Strouse.
The Diamond as Big as the Ritz would mark the first time Strouse and Meehan have worked together since Annie 2.
"I wanted to do one more show with Charles or maybe two or three more. And The Diamond as Big as the Ritz was his idea," Meehan told the Post.
The book writer, who is also working on musical adaptations of "Tootsie" and "Dave," said that his first major contribution to the project was changing the character of the narrator from male to female.
The 1922 short story follows teenager John T. Unger, who is sent to a private boarding school where he meets Percy Washington. Percy claims that his father is the "richest man in the world" and owns a diamond "bigger than the Ritz-Carlton Hotel." When Unger visits the Washingtons, he finds that they are rich, but also greedy and corrupt.
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