a basquiat musical is heading to broadway
Jean-Michel Basquiat’s works have exhibited around the world. Now, they’re heading to Broadway.
Broadway producers Alan and Barbara Marks announced today that they plan to dive into the 80s New York City art scene in an attempt to bring Basquiat’s story to life. The artist was first recognized as one half of the graffiti duo, SAMO, known for their illustrative work on the Lower East Side in the 70s. Later, he’d turn to drawing and produce many neo-expressionist paintings. As a poet as well, Basquiat is often considered one of the most important artists of the 20th century, particularly for his deeply politically minded work and social commentary.
The musical is untitled so far, but multi-instrumentalist Jon Batiste, from The Late Show with Stephen Colbert is set to write music and lyrics while Tony Award winner John Doyle will direct. They’re reportedly working closely with the Basquiat estate on the project and secured rights to his art work and personal archives.
“I want people to leave this show inspired to create,” Batiste said in a statement. “I want them to not only learn about Jean-Michel Basquiat, an innovator, but to also feel the visceral thrill of the creative process and to deepen and discover their own creativity. We have an opportunity to tell a truly profound story, full of emotional highs and lows, with unbelievable art at the center.”