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Jeff Buckley Musical To Retell The Story Of Romeo And Juliet

November 17, 2012 | Posted by Joseph Lee

The Guardian reports that a Jeff Buckley musical is being prepared, and a series of workshops are due in New York early next year.

The musical will be a retelling of Romeo and Juliet set to Buckley’s lyrics and songs. It will be called The Last Goodbye. Two-time Tony award nominee Alex Timbers (Peter and the Starcatcher) will direct. Michael Kimmel created and adapted the musical, which has started casting, after his first self-directed tryout at the 2010 Williamstown theatre festival. A description of that show described it as “an ensemble of 14 singer/actors bring to life the lyrical beauty of two great poets set in a world of youthful angst, grandeur and grit” and an “incendiary new musical”.

The Last Goodbye will feature several of his hits, including Lover, You Should Have Come Over and Eternal Life. Rehearsals will last for three weeks starting January 27.

Buckley is best known for his cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, and was praised for his debut album Grace. He drowned in 1997 at the age of 30. Following his death, several songs, including some from his unfinished second album (My Sweetheart the Drunk) were released.

In a 2010 interview with The New York Times, his mother, Mary Guibert, said she had doubts about the project (calling it a “real stretch”) but was won over. She said: “Suddenly I felt that across centuries you had two kindred spirits talking about the same things – love, relationships, suffering, death. It was like having my eyes opened to Jeff’s music in a new light, a different and very natural light.

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Joseph Lee

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