Tuner aiming for regional staging in early 2011
A squad of Broadway creatives are bringing “Bring It On: The Musical” to the stage in a tuner version aimed toward a regional developmental staging in early 2011 ahead of a national tour.Lin-Manuel Miranda and Tom Kitt — recent Tony winners for “In the Heights” and “Next to Normal,” respectively — will compose the music, with Amanda Green (“High Fidelity”) providing lyrics. Jeff Whitty (“Avenue Q”) pens the book. Andy Blankenbuehler, choreographer of “Heights” and “9 to 5,” will get his first director-choreographer credit with the production. “Heights” alum Alex Lacamoire will be orchestrator, arranger and music supervisor. Musical version of “Bring It On,” the 2000 Universal movie that has generated four direct-to-DVD sequels, will be produced by Universal Pictures Stage Prods., with Charlie Lyons and Armyan Bernstein of Beacon Communications, the production company behind the original film. Kristin Caskey and Mike Isaacson will oversee production on a day-to-day basis. Tuner will have an entirely new storyline centered (as are all the “Bring It On” outings) on competitive cheerleading. Blankenbuehler said the narrative focuses on an up-and-comer who angers a fellow cheerleader when she oversteps her bounds. Original movie, which starred Kirsten Dunst, Gabrielle Union and Eliza Dushku, followed two cheer squads from rival high schools in their attempts to make it to the championships. Like the musical, the sequels are only loosely tied to the original, centering on new characters but sticking to the world of competitive cheer. No Broadway or New York plans have yet been mapped out for the brewing musical. Universal Pictures has had a hand in recent Rialto productions including “Wicked” and “Billy Elliot.” Blankenbuehler said work on the show has progressed to include the completion of a solid draft of the book and about three-quarters of the score, adding that he hopes to have a reading in January. “The team’s goal is to create a piece of theater that’s not just for little girls,” he said.