Jean-Michel Basquiat Musical in Development


[Many thanks to Peter Jordens for bringing this item to our attention.] Madison Bloom (Pitchfork) writes about a new musical inspired by the life and art of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Jon Batiste, bandleader of the “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” has written the music and lyrics. The musical will be directed by John Doyle. Bloom reports:

A new musical “inspired by the life and art” of Jean-Michel Basquiat is in the works. Jon Batiste, multi-instrumentalist and leader of the “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” house band, has written the music and lyrics. John Doyle will direct. According to a press release, producers Alan D. and Barbara Marks have access to Basquiat’s art and personal archives. A title and premiere date for the musical have not been announced.

In a statement, Batiste said, “I want people to leave this show inspired to create. I want them to not only learn about Jean-Michel Basquiat, an innovator, but to also feel the visceral thrill of the creative process and to deepen and discover their own creativity.” Lisane and Jeanine Basquiat (Jean-Michel’s younger sisters) added in a joint statement:

Over the years, many people have approached us about telling our brother’s story on stage. But having discussed this project with the Marks over many months, our interest was piqued once we understood that their approach to telling our brother’s story treats his life, his art and his legacy with respect and passion. With Jon Batiste and John Doyle leading the creative team, we are thrilled with the possibilities. We cannot wait to begin the developmental process. Broadway is a new world for us, and we looking forward to sharing our brother’s life and art.


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