Rock & Roll Man, a new biomusical centered on the life story of legendary DJ Alan Freed, officially opens its New York premiere Off-Broadway at New World Stages' Stage 3 June 21 after beginning previews June 3. The score includes hits made famous by such artists as Little Richard, Chuck Berry, LaVern Baker, Buddy Holly, Bo Diddley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Screamin' Jay Hawkins, along with original songs by Gary Kupper.
Leading the cast is Broadway Rock of Ages star Constantine Maroulis, starring as Freed alongside Joe Pantoliano as Leo Mintz and Morris Levy, Bob Ari as J. Edgar Hoover, Rodrick Covington as Little Richard, Valisia Lekae as LaVern Baker, Jamonté as Dave Cooper and Frankie Lymon, Andy Christopher as Buddy Holly and Pat Boone, Autumn Guzzardi as Alan's Mother and Jackie, Anna Hertel as Alana and Betty, Matthew S. Morgan as Screamin' Jay Hawkins and Chuck Berry, Dominique Scott as Jerry Lee Lewis and Dick Clark, and Eric B. Turner as Judge and Bo Diddley.
The musical takes place on the final day of Freed's life. In a fever dream, prosecutor J. Edgar Hoover and defense attorney Little Richard face off with Freed's legacy at stake. The work features a book by Gary Kupper, Larry Marshak, and Rose Caiola; original music and lyircs by Kupper; and vintage rock & roll elements designed by Marshak Classic Music LLC and Gary Kupper Music.
Randal Myler directs, with Stephanie Klemons choreographing. Dave Keyes is music director, with Keyes and Kupper serving as music supervisors and arrangers. Kenny Seymour is providing dance arrangements, additional orchestrations, and synth programming. Scenic design is by Timothy R. Mackabee, with costume design by Leon Dobkowski, projection design by Christopher Ash, lighting design by Matthew Richards and Aja M. Jackson, sound design by Ed Chapman, and hair, wig and makeup design by Kelley Jordan. Casting is by JZ Casting.
The Off-Broadway premiere is being produced by Caiola Productions and Benedetti Productions, Maria Caiola, Colleen Freed, Jay & Cindy Gutterman, and MTTM Theatrics. JRJ Productions' Jessica R. Jenen is executive producer and general manager.