Applause Books to Publish CARRIE This Spring


September 25, 2012 is the launch of both the premiere cast recording and the licensing rights by R&H Theatricals of Carrie the Musical. On that Tuesday, The cast (along with the creators) will gather at Barnes and Noble on 86th Street in New York City at 5pm to perform songs from the musical and to autograph the album. Event details:

            On May 21, 2013, Applause Theatre & Cinema Books (an imprint of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group) will publish Carrie the Musical: What Were They Thinking? by Lawrence D. Cohen, who not only wrote the libretto, but also penned the original script for the classic film based on Stephen King’s Carrie, which earned Cohen an Edgar nomination from the Mystery Writers of America.           

Carrie the Musical: What Were They Thinking? is an intensely personal chronicle, tracking Lawrence Cohen’s four-decade history with Stephen King’s classic fable—from reading the manuscript in 1973 while a reader for producer David Susskind, to writing the screenplay for the classic 1976 Brian de Palma film; from deciding to turn it into a musical (1984) to the path that led to the controversial Royal Shakespeare Company and legendary Broadway production that crashed and burned in 1988; to collaborating on its rebirth and resurrection for MCC Theater Off-Broadway in 2012.

            Rarely has a theatrical account been so first person and insider based—naming names, telling never-before-told stories, and revealing what its creators were thinking. Passionate and visceral, it provides a highly informative and educational behind-the-scenes look into just how musicals are written and put together.

            How did a show that even its harshest critic, Frank Rich, admitted “was a workable idea for a musical” and Ken Mandelbaum argued was “salvageable” go so far off track? How did an Oscar-winning composer and lyricist, plus the award-nominated screenwriter of the original film, produce a work that proved so divisive to audiences and critics? How did a musical that the world-renowned Royal Shakespeare Company chose as its follow-up to Les Misérables become such a train wreck? What were they thinking?

            Or—Was there another story behind the headlines?

            Follow the “Rocky”-like journey of the show from its very inception to its unpredictable resurrection that earned it thirteen theater award nominations, plus an award for Best Revival from the Off-Broadway Alliance, the recording of the show by the New York Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center for its archives, the release of a long-awaited cast recording on Ghostlight Records, and licensing by Rodgers and Hammerstein, allowing Carrie to enter the global theater repertoire. Talk about a miracle and a happy ending.

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