By Jason Robert Brown and Dan Elish
Directed by Todd Graff
Originally produced at Center Theatre Group, Los Angeles, CA. December 22,2006 through February 18, 2007
About the Premiere Production: Featuring a cast of thirteen 13 year olds and a teenaged rock band, 13 is a wild comedy about the frightening and fantastic years of adolescence in America. This exciting new musical takes place in a middle school in Indiana with a group of students who are sorting through the barrage of contradictory messages thrown their way, and through the comic perspectives and complex emotions of life at the crossroads. With its contagious energy and humor, 13 speaks to teens, parents, and anyone who thrived or just survived those tumultuous years of classes and cliques.
Artistic Statement: Soon after I moved to Los Angeles to run Center Theatre Group, I sat down to coffee with Tony Award-winner Jason Robert Brown. He told me about a musical he was working on about 13 year-olds and handed me a CD with four songs. I listened to it in the car and by the time I reached the office, I knew that we had to be involved. A quick phone call to Jason got the ball rolling. There was still a lot of work to done on the show, but our commitment to produce it was there.
In February 2006, we workshopped 13 with Jason, director Todd Graff and writer Dan Elish at the Kirk Douglas Theatre. The energy from those young performers jumped off the stage just like the songs had jumped out at me in the car months earlier. There was no denying that 13 deserved a full-fledged production and it became part of the Taper’s new season.
This piece resonates with me not just because I am a parent of a son who went through that signal year and a daughter who is fast approaching it, but because this is about a particular time that is very significant for everybody. This is not just a show for 13-year olds. It is also for anyone who knows a 13-year old or anyone who has been a 13-year old.
Director: Todd Graff
Choreographer: Michele Lynch
Music and Lyrics: Jason Robert Brown
Book: Dan Elish
Goodspeed Musicals in Connecticut - May 9-June 8,2008.
Broadway run at the Bernard S. Jacobs Theatre October 5, 2008-January 4, 2009
Official site for 13 on Broadway
"Teen Spirit: New Musical 13 Aims for Broadway’s Jacobs in September" from Playbill
Curtain up review, with song list
Variety review of the Los Angeles production
Free mp3s from the production
Drama Desk Nomination:
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play: Jeremy Davidson