Florence Welch will journey into the Jazz Age for her new musical project, one that will offer up fortune seekers and flappers, rum runners and rich dilettantes, self-made men and high society standard bearers.
In short, it’s F. Scott Fitzgerald’s glittering masterwork, “The Great Gatsby,” which will provide the spine of a new stage show that is eyeing a Broadway run. It will feature lyrics from Welch, best known as the leading force behind the Grammy-nominated Florence + the Machine, as well as music by Welch and Oscar and Grammy Award nominee Thomas Bartlett. Bartlett previously worked as a producer with Florence + The Machine on the song “Jenny of Oldstones,” and has released four albums as Doveman.
Pulitzer Prize winner Martyna Majok (“Cost of Living”) will write the book, and the show will be directed by Olivier Award nominee Rebecca Frecknall (“Summer and Smoke”). Jeanie O’Hare serves as story consultant. Len Blavatnik and Amanda Ghost will produce for Unigram in association with Robert Fox.
The show has been dubbed “The Great Gatsby, A New Musical.” The timeline for a pre-Broadway engagement will be announced at a later date. Hannah Giannoulis and James Orange serve as executive producers. The production will be co-produced by Access Entertainment. An original cast recording will be released by Warner Music.
First published in 1925, Fitzgerald’s story of Jay Gatsby, a shadowy businessman, and his obsession with socialite Daisy Buchanan has thrilled readers with its lyrical prose and incisive look at the American dream. It’s also inspired a wide range of movies, shows ballets, and even an online video game, with everyone from Baz Luhrmann to Elevator Repair Service offering their own takes on the classic.
“This book has haunted me for a large part of my life,” Welch said in a statement. “It contains some of my favorite lines in literature. Musicals were my first love, and I feel a deep connection to Fitzgerald’s broken romanticism. It is an honor to have been offered the chance to recreate this book in song.”
So we beat on…