Watch McKenzie Kurtz Perform The Heart of Rock and Roll's 'It Hit Me Like a Hammer,' Plus Huey Lewis Chats About New Musical | Playbill

Video Watch McKenzie Kurtz Perform The Heart of Rock and Roll's 'It Hit Me Like a Hammer,' Plus Huey Lewis Chats About New Musical

Both artists appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! as the jukebox musical readies to begin performances on Broadway.

Huey Lewis, of 80's sensation Huey Lewis and the News, recently stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live! to discuss The Heart of Rock and Roll's journey to Broadway. The new jukebox musical, featuring a host of Lewis tunes, is scheduled to begin previews at the James Earl Jones Theatre March 29 with an official opening night April 22.

Lewis shared how the idea of turning his hits into a musical came from an unlikely source: "It was actually my neighbor's son-in-law—Tyler Mitchell, our co-producer—it was his idea, and it was suggested by his father-in-law," Lewis said.

Lewis also revealed that the upcoming Broadway production is significantly different from the musical's pre-Broadway run at the Old Globe in San Diego: "There's probably four new songs, and some different scenes," he said.

Lewis also listed a handful of songs that he thought would make it into the musical, but didn't make the final cut: "Some of My Lies Are True," "Heart and Soul," and "While We're Young," which was in the Old Globe production but was ultimately removed.

McKenzie Kurtz, who stars in the forthcoming musical, also appeared on the late-night show, performing "It Hit Me Like a Hammer," one of many Lewis tunes featured in the production. Watch her performance in the video above and the interview with Lewis below:

The Heart of Rock and Roll has a book by Jonathan Abrams and a score of Lewis hits, including “The Heart of Rock and Roll,” “Hip to Be Square,” “Power of Love,” “Do You Believe in Love?,” “If This Is It,” “Doing It All for My Baby,” “Stuck with You,” "I Want a New Drug,” “It’s Alright,” and “Heart and Soul.” 

The musical follows Bobby, a Chicagoan whose failed band leads to him returning to corporate America. While working, he meets his boss, Cassandra, who has also traded in her personal life for a professional one. Together, the two realize their dreams when Bobby gets another shot at stardom and Cassandra is up for the CEO job.

The cast will be led by Corey Cott (Newsies) and Kurtz (Wicked) starring as Bobby and Cassandra, respectively, with Josh Breckenridge (Come From Away), F. Michael Haynie (Wicked), Zoe Jensen (Six), Tamika Lawrence (Caroline or Change), Raymond J. Lee (Sweeney Todd), John-Michael Lyles (A Strange Loop), Orville Mendoza (Swept Away), Billy Harrigan Tighe (Pippin), and John Dossett (Wicked).

The ensemble will feature Mike Baerga, Tommy Bracco, TyNia René Brandon, Olivia Cece, Taylor Marie Daniel, Lindsay Joan, Ross Lekites, Robin Masella, Kara Menendez, Michael Olaribigbe, Kevin Pariseau, and Robert Pendilla. Joe Moeller, Jennifer Noble, Fredric Rodriguez Odgaard, and Leah Read will serve as swings.

With a story by Tyler Mitchell and Abrams, the production will again be directed by Gordon Greenberg, who has been attached for the entirety of the musical's public development. Music supervision, arrangements, and orchestrations are by Brian Usifer with choreography by Lorin Latarro.

The production will also feature scenic design by Derek McLane, costume design by Jen Caprio, lighting design by Japhy Weideman, sound design by John Shivers, casting by Tara Rubin Casting and Peter Van Dam, and hair, wig, and makeup design by Nikiya Mathis. Justin Scribner serves as production stage manager.


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