UPDATED: Ghost Brothers of Darkland County to Hit the Atlanta Alliance Theatre Stage in Spring 2012
Sometimes patience does indeed pay off as those who have been waiting since 2008 to see the stage production of the Stephen King/John Mellencamp collaboration Ghost Brothers of Darkland County can finally see a bit of light at the end of the tunnel. It won't be fully glowing until spring of 2012, but at least some light is better than none.
According to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution the play, with musical direction by renowned producer T-Bone Burnett (O Brother, Where Art Thou?), will close Atlanta's Alliance Theatre's main stage season, running April 4–May 13, 2012. Despite earlier reports that Swedish actress Liv Ullmann would helm Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, Alliance artistic director Susan V. Booth will direct.
Per The AJC via Access Atlanta: The Alliance describes the show as a "Southern Gothic musical fraught with mystery, tragedy, and ghosts of the past."
The fate of the show itself has been a bit of a mystery. When it was delayed in May 2008, Booth said in an Alliance statement that the creative team was "in agreement with the evolution of the new work-in-progress and the direction it was moving in development" but realized that "the script would not be ready by spring 2009."
There were numerous online reports that the musical would be part of the Alliance's 2010-11 season. But then it wasn't included in the lineup announced in February 2010, and the Alliance had nothing to say officially then on the show's prospects.
"The Alliance one time previously – and one time only – announced this show," theater spokesman Terry Sagedy said Tuesday. "The postponement at that time was due to the challenges of delivering revisions in time for the scheduled production dates. "Obviously, with a creative team of this stature, there’s a lot of attention and speculation," he continued. "Fact is, we’re going forward with the piece’s premiere at the Alliance in 2012."
Sagedy added that Booth, as the director, had given input on the script.
UPDATE: We now have the synopsis of the play courtesy of the Alliance:
Ghost Brothers of Darkland County is a chilling new musical with music and lyrics by John Mellencamp and book by Stephen King. Based on a true story, one of the world's most popular authors and one of America’s most honored musicians have created a riveting Southern Gothic musical fraught with mystery, tragedy, and ghosts of the past along with a roots and blues-tinged score that is sure to leave audiences asking for more.
In the tiny town of Lake Belle Reve, Mississippi, in 1957, a terrible tragedy took the lives of two brothers and a beautiful young girl. During the next forty years the events of that night became the stuff of local legend. But legend is often just another word for lie. Joe McCandless knows what really happened; he saw it all. The question is whether or not he can bring himself to tell the truth in time to save his own troubled sons and whether the ghosts left behind by an act of violence will help him – or tear the McCandless family apart forever.
Hopefully this new date will stick! Look for more on Ghost Brothers of Darkland County soon.
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