A big new Broadway-bound musical that’s set in Asheville and was written by a couple of well-known musicians is previewing now at the Kennedy Center. The run ends Jan. 10.
Bright Star was written by comedian/actor/banjo picker Steve Martin and collaborator singer/songwriter Edie Brickell. A Broadway opening for Bright Star is planning for March.
The stage play, which includes a tune named Asheville, focuses on the stories of a World War II veteran who comes home to Asheville after the war and the editor of the local newspaper, dubbed The Asheville Southern Journal. The storyline spotlights the 1920s and the 1940s as a secret is revealed.
Here’s the description of the musical from the Bright Star sizzle reel on YouTube:
From award-winning screenwriter and playwright Steve Martin (Picasso at the Lapin Agile, Roxanne) and chart-topping singer-songwriter Edie Brickell comes a world premiere American musical inspired by their Grammy Award-winning collaboration “Love Has Come For You.” Bright Star features 25 new songs—Americana with a touch of rock—and tells a beguiling tale that unfolds in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina between 1923 and 1945. Billy Cane, a young soldier just home from World War II, meets Alice Murphy, the brilliant editor of a southern literary journal. Together they discover a powerful secret that alters their lives. Tony Award-winning director Walter Bobbie (Broadway’s Chicago) makes his Globe debut with this entertaining musical of enduring love, family ties, and the light of forgiveness that shines from a bright star.
Martin and Brickell collaborated on a tune about Asheville in 2013. Check it:
And here’s more detail about Bright Star, with interviews of Martin and Brickell.
Thanks to loyal reader AW for the heads-up on this.
Perhaps a little known (sadly) piece of trivia: In 2009, Australian film director, Jane Campion, released her film about poet John Keats. The film was called Bright Star. And one of its stars (a bright one, I might add) is Asheville’s own Paul Schneider, who got one of the 3 top-billing spots. There was a showing at The Fine Arts, attended by his parents, brother and friends. I was lucky enough to be there. Nice film. Great British countryside and period costumes. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bright_Star_(film)