By Ben Rimalower
10 May 2014
Jason Robert Brown is one of the most prodigious songwriters to grace Broadway over the last 15 years (that's The Last Five Years multiplied by three for any numerologists out there), and he has some of the most passionate fans of any era. While Brown's work is in some ways reminiscent of contemporaries Adam Guettel and Michael John LaChiusa, his music has a more easily accessible pop sound than Guettel's and his songs have a more distinct, traditional structure than LaChiusa's.
Brown burst onto the scene in 1995 with the popular Off-Broadway revue Songs for a New World, and his work since then has often followed a similar storytelling format. Before turning 30, he won the 1999 Tony Award for Best Original Score for Parade, and if like Parade, his subsequent output has failed to find long-term commercial success, Brown has to continued to impress and win new devotees. His Broadway musical adaptation of The Bridges of Madison County has already announced a closing date of May 18, and anyone who cares about musical theatre ought to do his or herself a favor and make haste to the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre.