Julien Nitzberg Announces His New Musical FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE, An Unauthorized Musical Fable About The Life Of Michael Jackson As Told By His Glove
Local playwright/filmmaker Julien Nitzberg announced here today that his new work for the theater, FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE, AN UNAUTHORIZED MUSICAL FABLE ABOUT THE LIFE OF Michael Jackson AS TOLD BY HIS GLOVE, will open Friday, January 25, 2020. FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE is the inaugural prodution of a new addition to the thriving DTLA/Hollywood adjacent cultural scene, the Carl Sagan-Ann Druyan Theater on the ground floor of the Center For Inquiry (CFI) at 2535 W. Temple Street where, offers Nitzberg: "We are a perfect fit for this gorgeous new space especially because we share CFI's mission to critique how people misuse religion to promote homophobia and racism."
FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE stars Jerry Minor in the title role THRHIL-LHA (aka The Glove) and Eric B. Anthony as Michael Jackson. As with the hit Broadway musical AVENUE Q, the actors in FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE perform their 20 roles while visible to the audience. Unlike AVENUE Q, this show does not use "Muppet style" puppets, rather specially designed, meticulously built Japanese Bunraku-style puppets. Realistic and close to life size, these 20 all-original works of art portray all members of the Jackson 5, Donny Osmond, Emmanuel Lewis, Corey Feldman and Bubbles the Chimp. An announcement of the supporting cast will come soon.
The show's producers are Leigh Crawford, Johhny Depp, Sam Sarkar and Depp's company Infinitum Nihil, Anthony "Tony" Jones, Betsy Zajko and Burk Zanft. FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE is directed by Julien Nitzberg who wrote the book and lyrics. Composers are Drew Erickson, Nicole Morier and Max Townsley. Production designer is Andrea Keller; costumes by Ann Closs-Farley. Robin Walsh is lead puppet designer and puppet director. Ron Binion is puppet designer and build coordinator; Dale Van Slyke serves as puppet build assistant and assistant stage manager reporting to stage manager Sarah Dawn Lowry. Amanda Bierbauer is production manager.
Tickets to FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE are on sale today at https://www.fortheloveofaglove.com
FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE takes an off-kilter approach to the life story of Michael Jackson. Using Michael's glove as the play's narrator, the show is a fresh, revisionist look at the strange forces that shaped Jackson and the scandals that bedeviled him. By re-telling true life events through the perspective of a glove which is also a musically talented alien trying to take over humanity, the show is comical and unflinching, its music infused with the spirit of Motown.
In real life, Michael's favorite musical was THE SOUND OF MUSIC. This Rodgers and Hammerstein classic trafficked not in any of the actual music performed in real life by the von Trapp family, but rather employed a completely original score. Inspired by this, FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE does not use any of the Jackson 5's or Michael's music, rather only original music created by the composer team of Erickson, Morier and Townsley (more on them below).
Deeply researched, FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE puts at its center the Amadeus/Salieri relationship between Michael and Donny Osmond, suggesting it is the key to understanding Michael's future fixations both professional and personal. Before cultural appropriation became a contemporary buzzword, the Osmonds appropriated the Jackson 5's look and sound in a way that caused controversy in the black community but was largely ignored in the white world. FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE delves into this strange history while also surveying the damage that the Jehovah's Witnesses (Michael's own religion) may have inflicted on Michael, and also how its particular rules might have shaped his art. FOR THE LOVE OF A GLOVE is no greatest hits revue or "jukebox musical"; rather, like LA itself, the show is more than the sum of its numerous influences from Japan, Motown, Hollywood and multiple outer space signifiers.