New York Premiere of ROCK & ROLL MAN Coming This June
How did an unknown DJ from Ohio change the world forever? That's the story of Rock & Roll Man! Performances of the New York premiere of Rock & Roll Man, starring Tony Award-nominee Constantine Maroulis and Emmy Award-winner Joe Pantoliano, begin this Saturday, June 3 at 8pm. The new musical, which celebrates the life of the trailblazing DJ Alan Freed will open on June 21, 2023 at New World Stages, Stage 3.
In addition to Constantine Maroulis as Alan Freed and Joe Pantoliano as Leo Mintz / Morris Levy, the cast of Rock & Roll Man includes Bob Ari as J. Edgar Hoover, Rodrick Covington as Little Richard, Valisia LeKae as LaVern Baker, ensemble members Jamonté, Andy Christopher, Autumn Guzzardi, Anna Hertel, Matthew S. Morgan, Dominque Scott, Eric B. Turner, Natalie Kaye Clater, Lawrence Dandridge, AJ Davis; and Swings Joe Barbara, Chase Peacock, and Bronwyn Tarboton.
Rock & Roll Man chronicles the remarkable life of Alan Freed, the boundary-smashing disc jockey rebel who popularized the records that became the foundation of rock. With an original score that also includes genre-defying hits like “Rock & Roll Music,” “I Put A Spell On You,” “Great Balls of Fire,” “Lucille,” “Peggy Sue,” “Jim Dandy,” “Wake Up Little Susie,” “Roll Over Beethoven,” “Yakety Yak,” “Maybellene,” “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes,” “Why Do Fools Fall in Love,” “Tutti Frutti,” “Good Golly,” and more, this edgy and inspiring new musical comes to New York after two sold-out critically acclaimed developmental productions at Bucks County Playhouse and the Berkshire Theatre Group.
Rock & Roll Man takes place on the last day of Alan Freed’s life during a fever dream in which J. Edgar Hoover and Little Richard face off in a fantasy courtroom with Freed’s legacy on trial. Freed brought the sound of rock & roll to the world, popularizing Black artists including legends Chuck Berry and Little Richard. He played their music, produced their concerts, and found an audience coast to coast, becoming “the voice” of a generation. For the first time in history, Black and white artists performed together on stage, for multi-racial audiences. Freed risked everything to integrate the airwaves and unite audiences across America through their love of music.
The music of Rock & Roll Man features some of the most well-known rock & roll classics created by legends such as Little Richard, Chuck Berry, LaVern Baker, Buddy Holly, Bo Diddley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, as well as explosive original songs by Gary Kupper.
Rock & Roll Man features book by Gary Kupper & Larry Marshak and Rose Caiola, original music and lyrics by Gary Kupper, Vintage Rock & Roll Elements developed by Marshak Classic Music LLC and Gary Kupper Music, direction by Tony Award-nominee Randal Myler, choreography by Stephanie Klemons, musical direction by Dave Keyes, music supervision and arrangements by Gary Kupper and Dave Keyes, additional orchestrations and dance arrangements by Kenny Seymour. The Music Coordinator is John Miller. Scenic design is by Tim Mackabee, costume design by Leon Dobkowski, projection design by Christopher Ash, lighting design by Matthew Richards and Aja M. Jackson, sound design by Ed Chapman, and casting by JZ Casting, Geoff Josselson, Katja Zarolinski and Jimmy Larkin. Rock & Roll Man is produced by 7-time Tony Award-winners Caiola Productions. Executive Producer and General Manager is JRJ Productions LLC, Jessica R. Jenen.
For more information, click here.