Musical Lennon Project Heads to San Francisco Prior to Broadway Run in 2005

News   Musical Lennon Project Heads to San Francisco Prior to Broadway Run in 2005
Lennon — the musical stagework once known as The Lennon Project — will make its world premiere at San Francisco's Curran Theatre this winter prior to its Broadway run in 2005.

Conceived and directed by Don Scardino, the new musical based on the songs of John Lennon. The staging, produced by arrangement with Yoko Ono, will feature the music of the late Beatle with a book by Scardino.

Producer Allan McKeown (Jerry Springer — The Opera) joins previously attached Edgar Lansbury and Scardino to present the work.

"I was after something that was very theatrical and that would, for the audience, really bring forward the real living idea of John Lennon," director Don Scardino previously told Playbill On-Line about his upcoming stagework.

"The idea is basically as if an acting troupe walked on stage, unpacked their bags and said 'Tonight, we do John Lennon' just like the players in Hamlet [say] here's The Murder of Gonzago. Well, here's the murder of John Lennon, [or] the life of John Lennon. Doing so, the actors on stage all take up his voice and his time and be another facet of that personality and basically make up the measure of the man in the process, through the course of the evening. And ultimately, Lennon speaks himself at the end of the piece, by showing the 'Imagine' film."

Lennon will tell the tale of more than just a musician. "He always seemed to be ahead of the curve. Or, by example, the curve followed him. He was such a leader for a certain generation, particularly, that he's emblematic of the times he came through." Scardino summed up the concept as "Not only how his life defined the times, but how the times defined him."

The musical will features ten actors portraying John Lennon at various stages in his life. Thirty songs from the substantial Lennon oeuvre will be featured in the musical, among them "Imagine," "Instant Karma," "Give Peace a Chance," "Working Class Hero," and "Whatever Gets You Through the Night." The design team of Lennon features John Arnone (set), Jane Greenwood (costumes) with Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer (lighting). Casting and additional creative team will be announced later.

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