New musical targets 2012-13 opening
Producers of new tuner “Hands on a Hardbody” have formally declared their intentions to bring the show to Broadway, following the upbeat reviews the musical received in its current world premiere run at the La Jolla Playhouse.Based on the 1997 doc about a group of contestants competing to win a new truck, “Hardbody” has music by Phish frontman (and legit newcomer) Trey Anastasio and Amanda Green, with lyrics by Green and a book by Doug Wright (“I Am My Own Wife,” “Grey Gardens”). Neil Pepe (“Speed-the-Plow”) helms the production with musical staging by Benjamin Millepied (“Black Swan”), who, like Anastasio, will be making his Broadway debut with the show. Casting for the Rialto incarnation has not yet been announced. Keith Carradine, Hunter Foster and Keala Settle are among the thesps who star in the La Jolla staging. SoCal critics generally deemed the show a promising new work, although most also mentioned that the 2 1/2-hour show could use some trimming and tightening before going on to future life. Commercial team of producers attached to the project includes Broadway Across America (John Gore, Thomas B. McGrath, Beth Williams), Rich Entertainment Group (Bob and Mindy Rich), Barbara Whitman, Latitude Link, Dede Harris, Sharon Karmazin and Howard and Janet Kagan. New tuner was commissioned by La Jolla, where the show is skedded to end its run June 17. Producers are targeting a Broadway berth sometime during the 2012-13 season, with exact dates and theater still to be set.