The New York premiere of Be More Chill celebrates its official opening in the Irene Diamond Stage at the Pershing Square Signature Center August 9. The coming-of-age musical, which features a score by Joe Iconis and a book by Joe Tracz, makes its Off-Broadway debut with an all-new production.
Based on Ned Vizzini’s novel, Be More Chill tells the story of an average teenager, played by Dear Evan Hansen's Will Roland, who takes a pill purported to make people more easygoing. The musical, which began performances July 26, is directed by Stephen Brackett and choreographed by Chase Brock.
The cast of the Off-Broadway premiere is made up of Gerard Canonico (Spring Awakening, Groundhog Day) as Rich, Katlyn Carlson (Dirty Dancing, The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin) as Chloe, Stephanie Hsu (SpongeBob SquarePants) as Christine, Tiffany Mann (Waitress, Jerry Springer the Opera) as Jenna, Lauren Marcus (The Humans at St. Louis Rep, Company at Barrington Stage) as Brooke, George Salazar (tick tick BOOM!, Godspell, The Lightning Thief) as Michael, Britton Smith (Shuffle Along, After Midnight) as Jake, Jason Tam (Jesus Christ Superstar, KPOP) as The Squip, and Jason SweetTooth Williams (Freaky Friday, Benny and Joon, Bloodsong of Love) as Jeremy's Dad/Mr. Reyes.
Be More Chill premiered in 2015 at New Jersey's Two River Theater before gradually amassing a large fan following online due to the release of the cast album. Several members from the original company are reprising their performances Off-Broadway, including Salazar, Canonico, Carlson, Hsu, and Marcus.
Check out photos from the production, scheduled through September 23, below.
First Look at the Off-Broadway Premiere of Be More Chill
The production features scenic design by Tony Award winner Beowulf Boritt (Come From Away); costume design by Bobby Frederick Tilley II (Lizzie Borden, Top Girls); lighting design by Tony Award winner Tyler Micoleau (The Band's Visit); sound design by Ryan Rumery (Fool For Love); projection design by Alex Basco Koch (Buyer & Cellar); musical direction by Emily Marshall; orchestrations by Charlie Rosen (Prince of Broadway, Honeymoon in Vegas); casting by Telsey + Company / Adam Caldwell, CSA & Rebecca Scholl, CSA; production stage management by Amanda Michaels (The Children, The Ballad of Little Jo); general management by Lisa Dozier King; and production management by SenovvA Production Core.
The Off-Broadway premiere of Be More Chill is presented by Gerald Goehring, Michael F. Mitri, Jennifer Ashley Tepper, Marc David Levine, Marlene and Gary Cohen, 42nd.club, The Baruch Frankel Viertel Group, Alisa and Charlie Thorne, Jenny Niederhoffer, Chris Blasting/Simpson & Longthorne, Brad Blume/Gemini Theatrical, Jonathan Demar/Kim Vasquez, Ben Holtzman and Sammy Lopez,Koenigsberg/Federman/Adler, Ashlee Latimer and Jenna Ushkowitz, Jenn Maley and Cori Stolbun, Robert and Joan Rechnitz, Fred and Randi Sternfeld, YesBroadway Productions, in association with Two River, which originally commissioned and produced the musical.