The musical adaptation of Almost Famous, based on the 2000 film by Cameron Crowe, ends its premiere Broadway run January 8. The new show officially opened at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre November 3, following previews beginning October 3. Upon closing, it will have played 30 preview performances and 77 performances.
Set in 1973, the story follows a 15-year-old aspiring music journalist who Rolling Stone hires to go on tour with an up-and-coming rock band. Crowe won an Oscar for his semi-autobiographical screenplay chronicling his own time as a young journalist with The Allman Brothers Band and Led Zeppelin.
The cast features Solea Pfeiffer as Penny Lane, the role which garnered an Oscar nomination for a young Kate Hudson; Chris Wood as Russell Hammond, guitarist for the fictional band Stillwater; Casey Likes as teen journalist William Miller; Tony nominee Anika Larsen as William's mother Elaine; Drew Gehling as the band's lead singer Jeff Bebe; and Rob Colletti as journalist Lester Bangs, played by Phillip Seymour Hoffman in the film.
An official cast recording is expected in March 2023 featuring new tunes written for the musical with music by Tony and Pulitzer winner Tom Kitt and lyrics by Crowe and Kitt. Songs include "Morocco," performed by Likes and Pfeiffer (get a sneak listen here) and "The Night-Time Sky's Got Nothing on You," performed by Pfeiffer and Wood (listen here). The stage show also includes memorable song moments from the film including the Stillwater's hit "Fever Dog," and Elton John's "Tiny Dancer."
The cast also includes Matt Bittner, Chad Burris, Gerard Canonico, Julia Cassandra, Brandon Contreras, Jakeim Hart, Van Hughes, Jana Djenne Jackson, Claire Kwon, Katie Ladner, Danny Lindgren, Erica Mansfield, Alisa Melendez, Kevin Trinio Perdido, Andrew Poston, Emily Schultheis, Daniel Sovich, Libby Winters, and Matthew C. Yee.
Almost Famous is directed by Tony nominee Jeremy Herrin (Wolf Hall Parts One and Two), leading a creative team that also includes choreographer Sarah O'Gleby, music supervisor Bryan Perri, scenic designer Derek McLane, costume designer David Zinn, lighting designer Natasha Katz, sound designer Peter Hylenski, hair and makeup designer Luc Verschueren, and physical movement coordinator Lorenzo Pisoni. Kitt has penned arrangements and orchestrations, and vocal design is by AnnMarie Milazzo. The production is cast by Jim Carnahan.