A new biographical musical about singer-songwriter Neil Diamond is in development, with hopes for an eventual Broadway bow.
The currently untitled production, incorporating Diamond's hit tunes, will feature a book by three-time Oscar nominee Anthony McCarten (Bohemian Rhapsody, Darkest Hour, The Theory of Everything) and direction by Tony winner Michael Mayer (Broadway's current Burn This).
Diamond said in a statement, “I’ve always loved Broadway. The inspiration for many of my early songs came from shows like West Side Story, My Fair Lady, and Fiddler on the Roof, so it seems only fitting to bring my songs to The Great White Way. I’m honored and excited to be working with this great team.”
McCarten added, “On the mantle-piece in my childhood home in New Zealand, there were always two pictures: one was of the Pope, the other of Neil Diamond. The epic musical catalog of this Rock and Roll Hall of Famer flowed endlessly off our family record player. As a child you took it into yourself, and to this day I can recite the lyrics of his hits deep into their second or third verses. Imagine my excitement, then, when the opportunity arose to work with Neil on a musical based on his life and music.”
Ken Davenport will produce alongside the Four Seasons' Bob Gaudio.
Among Diamond's recordings are “Cracklin’ Rose,” “Sweet Caroline,” “Song Sun Blue,” “Longfellow Serenade,” “I’ve Been This Way Before,” “If You Know What I Mean,” “Desiree,” “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers,” “America,” “Yesterday’s Song,” and “Heartlight.” The Grammy winner is a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame and is a recipient of the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award. Diamond also received the Kennedy Center Honor for his lifetime of contributions to American culture.