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WILD CARDS Comes to Broadway!!

It was 1987 when Bantam Books released Wild Cards, the first volume of what would turn out to be the longest-running and best-selling shared world anthology of all time (though no one ever dreamed of that back then). The very first story in that very first volume, the one that kicked off all that was to follow, was “Thirty Minutes Over Broadway,” Howard Waldrop’s poignant and powerful tale of Jetboy’s last adventure.

It took thirty years instead of thirty minutes, but Howard had it right. Wild Cards is coming to Broadway in a lavish new musical production, scripted and produced by yours truly and the members of the Wild Cards consortium, in partnership with none other than the amazing, astonishing, incredible, multi-talented Lin-Manuel Miranda.



With twenty-three volumes in print, three more awaiting publication, and another four presently being written, the Wild Cards series contains far more material than could possibly be contained on any stage, even one on the Great White Way, so we’re only able to bring the beginnings of the epic to the stage: the tales of Dr. Tachyon and Dr. Tod and Jetboy, and the rise and fall of the Four Aces. And in the midst of all the action will be Croyd Crenson, Roger Zelazny’s iconic and immortal Sleeper, acting as narrator and commentator, as Che did in Evita.



The score (much of which is still being written) will be a daring and innovative blend of Hip-Hop, Blues, and period appropriate Big Band music. Wild Cards stalwarts Christopher Rowe, Diana Rowland, and Kevin Andrew Murphy have been assisting with some of the lyrics, working with Lin-Manuel.

Here’s just a few of the songs you’ll be whistling next year:
“I Can’t Die Yet” (Jetboy’s Song),
“Sleepless” (the Algebra Song),
“Jokertown Blues,”
“Coming Up Aces,” (the Four Aces),
“Names, Names” (Golden Boy’s song).

We’re still in the early stages of mounting the production, so casting is far from complete, but we have filled a few key roles, and I’m thrilled to be able to share those with you.

Lin-Manuel himself will star as Dr. Tachyon, the flamboyant alien from the planet Takis who tries, and fails, to prevent the release of the wild card virus on Earth.



The role of Dr. Tod, the half-faced mad scientist who attempts to use the alien virus to exact a fortune from President Truman, will be played by comedian John Hodgman, in his first all – singing all – dancing role.



Our leading lady will be the hauntingly beautiful Sibel Kekilli, playing Blythe Stanhope van Rennsaeler, the spoiled socialite transformed by the virus into the ace Brain Trust, the woman that Dr. Tachyon comes to love… and ultimately destroys.



As for the Sleeper, no one performer could ever capture the essence of Croyd Crenson, so Croyd will be portrayed by four different actors every night, from a revolving repertory cast that will change with every performance. Come on Saturday, and you’ll see four different Croyds from those who came Friday.



We’re still looking for the right performers to bring Golden Boy, Black Eagle, and the Envoy to life (your suggestions are welcome), though we do have some exciting possibilities that I cannot tell you about as yet.

Perhaps most critically, Lin-Manuel and I are still looking for our Jetboy… or should be it be Jetgirl? No, we haven’t made that change yet, but it is under serious consideration… along with the notion of replacing the JB-1 with a jetpack… but why don’t we let you folks decide? Let us know: which Jet-person would you prefer to see on stage?



Whether or not we go with Jetboy or Jetgirl, I can promise you one thing: the end of the first act will be a spectacular unlike anything ever seen before on Broadway, as Dr. Tod’s blimps float across the theatre raining down spores on the audience below. Ninety per cent of the theatre-goers will draw a black queen and “die,” to be sure… but a tenth of the audience (chosen at random) will be twisted and transformed into jokers, and one in a hundred will be designated as aces, and will join the cast on stage for the opening number of the second act.

So there we have it: Wild Cards: The Musical.

It’s going to be a night at the theatre that you’ll never forget, and tickets will be even harder to come by than for Hamilton.

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Comments

( 52 comments )
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yancyfry
Apr. 1st, 2017 05:37 pm (UTC)
April fools?
I honestly cannot tell if this is serious or not.
mxg312
Apr. 1st, 2017 05:41 pm (UTC)
Would be awesome...
But guessing I am an April fool :-(
Sarah Coons
Apr. 1st, 2017 05:43 pm (UTC)
April Fools?
Is this for real?
Todd Noelle
Apr. 1st, 2017 05:49 pm (UTC)
Bloody Mummery
Congrats George!!
Dan Koifman
Apr. 1st, 2017 05:50 pm (UTC)
I was about to congratulate you as I recover from major surgery, propped up on morphine. But then I thought to myself, a dancing Hodgeman? Let me look at the date first. You almost got me there. :)
Pat Robinson
Apr. 1st, 2017 05:50 pm (UTC)
:)
Why oh why didn't you post this another day!

Hmmm... That's a good epitaph... "...I can't die yet...I haven't seen the Wild Cards Musical..."


Also... If it ever were made, "30 Minutes Over Broadway" has to be the title...

Pat
Max Peterson
Apr. 1st, 2017 06:30 pm (UTC)
:)
I see what you did there ;)
harryberger89
Apr. 1st, 2017 06:31 pm (UTC)
Wild Cards
What everyone has been waiting for.
mizkit
Apr. 1st, 2017 06:35 pm (UTC)
oh, dude, you had me through like the fourth paragraph and then i was like WAAAAAAAAAAAIT. *laughs* *applause* well done :)
Gregg Chamberlain
Apr. 1st, 2017 06:43 pm (UTC)
Wild Cards on Broadway
fabtastic!
(Deleted comment)
Keith Russell Dulak
Apr. 2nd, 2017 02:54 pm (UTC)
Wild cards. Yay.
cousinofkong
Apr. 1st, 2017 07:15 pm (UTC)
Haha
And also there will be a strong belwas chapter in TWOW

April Hill
Apr. 1st, 2017 07:22 pm (UTC)
Smirks. Giggle.
I don't want to spoil it for them...

Edited at 2017-04-02 04:44 am (UTC)
livejournal
Apr. 1st, 2017 07:25 pm (UTC)
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silverwhistle
Apr. 1st, 2017 07:27 pm (UTC)
Sounds great, and good to see Sibel in a leading role. She was excellent as Shae in GoT.
Jeff R Hall
Apr. 1st, 2017 07:31 pm (UTC)
Is this real?
Is this real or an April Fool's joke?
lilchiva
Apr. 1st, 2017 07:43 pm (UTC)
Your blog has been excellent lately. Just saying.
grrm
Apr. 1st, 2017 08:26 pm (UTC)
Thanks. Kind of you to say.
(no subject) - deep_name - Apr. 1st, 2017 08:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
anagramofbrat
Apr. 1st, 2017 08:14 pm (UTC)
As far as April Fools trolling goes this is pretty fantastic.
smofbabe
Apr. 1st, 2017 08:53 pm (UTC)
Actually, LMM *would* make a great Dr Tachyon :->
dragonborngurl
Apr. 1st, 2017 09:08 pm (UTC)
Congratulations George! That's wonderful! Any chance fans can get a crack at winning tickets or discounted? ;)
Kate Shepard Lunsford
Apr. 1st, 2017 09:15 pm (UTC)
You won't make a FOOL out of me
It would be awesome!!
emp_sheeptopia
Apr. 1st, 2017 09:21 pm (UTC)

My guess is that last statement is VERY true. Lol.

kevin_standlee
Apr. 1st, 2017 11:33 pm (UTC)
Agreed. As in literally impossible, where "literally" actually means literally, not figuratively.
VicDiGital
Apr. 1st, 2017 09:33 pm (UTC)
This is awesome!
Does Lin-Manuel Miranda know yet that he's going to be involved in this?
Kevin Andrew Murphy
Apr. 1st, 2017 09:34 pm (UTC)
Lyrics preview, Jokertown Blues
Hey George, here's what I just put on Facebook:

Announcement earlier today about the Wild Cards musical. As I mentioned, the book will be by Lin-Manuel Miranda along Diana Rowland, Christopher Rowe, and myself. I got permission to share one of the numbers, "Jokertown Blues," also known as "Wild Cards Blues." It was mentioned in Wild Cards volume one but I was allowed to write the lyrics as part of my story for Deuces Down, volume XVI, and they also get a reprise in my story in the next volume, Mississippi Roll.

The conceit we're going with is that this is an old blues standard, so lots of bands have covered it, most famously Mr. Rainbow, C.C. Ryder, and my characters, The Jokertown Boys, Jokertown's boy band. But like all standards, it gets different arrangements and new artists often add new verses, so I expect (and kind of hope) Lin-Manuel will add his pen to mine.

But here's a preview of what you can expect from the show:

“Jokertown Blues” (“Wild Card Blues”)
[C.C. Ryder arrangement of Mr. Rainbow’s original]

If you go down to Jokertown
Anyone you might see
Might be a little old lady
Name of Juju Marie
She might look like you
She might look like me
But there’s mighty mean momma
Name of Juju Marie

If you go down to Jokertown
Better watch what you say
Or that little old lady’s
Gonna blow you away
“Toads and Diamonds,”
That’s what she sings,
“Jokers, and Aces,
And Black Queens and Kings”

If you go down to Jokertown
You better pray hard
That a little old lady
Don’t deal you a card
You might start to weep
You might start to wail
You might feel an urge
To start a-shaking your tail!

If you go down to Jokertown
Well, you might just stay there
’Cause that mean ol’ woman
Who deal cards, she ain’t fair
If you lose, you win
If you win, you lose
What I’m talking about
Is called the Wild Card Bluuuuuuues. . . .

You’ll get no release!
You’ll get no reprieve!
And if you go down to Jokertown
You might never leave!

(Originally published in “With a Flourish and a Flair” in Wild Cards XVI: Deuces Down, copyright Kevin Andrew Murphy)
imwalde
Apr. 1st, 2017 09:34 pm (UTC)
Cool! Will it be later this year or more likely in 2018?
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