Books that would make great musicals

edited December 2014 in Theater
John Verderber and I have been talking about Little Me on the Smile lyrics discussion and I said I love whatever brain read the Patrick Dennis book and thought it was a musical. Now I'm wondering what great books - fiction or non - have you read that you think would make a great musical (of course, if you're thinking of writing it yourself, make sure you have the rights before you comment here). The more out there, the better.


  • edited January 2015
    Well, it hasn't been actually written down, but someday, if I decide to work in musical theatre, I would just LOVE to write and direct an adaptation of "The Epic of Sundiata"- an epic poem of the Malinke people that tells the story of the hero Sundiata Keita (died 1255), the founder of the Mali Empire. (I've even thought of whom I would hire to write the songs: Stephen Schwartz (WICKED, THE PRINCE OF EGYPT, PIPPIN, GODSPELL, THE BAKER'S WIFE, SEANCE ON A WET AFTERNOON, and CHILDREN OF EDEN).)

    Some books that HAVE already been written which I hope would do well as musicals (or as straight plays [or films, for that matter]) include NEFERTITI and THE HERETIC QUEEN (both by Michelle Moran [one of my favorite authors]).
  • Oh man! There are so many. One of my personal favorites is The Great Gatsby, but I feel like that's in danger of becoming a spectacle and losing its heart in the wrong hands. That's a challenge I'd love to take on, though. (I know you said to make sure I had the rights if I wanted to do it, but I'm a long way from trying! Hey, a girl can dream!)

    Another would be The Book Thief. So poignant and funny and haunting.

    I read a nonfiction book recently, The Disaster Artist, which I think would make an incredible musical. Maybe I'll take a crack at this one, too.
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