By Beth Stevens
Holler if you want more hip hop on Broadway! Tony-winning producer and hip-hop pioneer Russell Simmons is developing a new musical called The Scenario, which will highlight hip-hop’s “golden age” (the 1980s-1990s) much like Rock of Ages showcased chart-topping “hair bands.”
“Hip hop’s explosion was fueled by a generation with an incredible hunger to discover new ways of expression,” Simmons said in a statement. “It felt like such a natural fit to weave the best of these sounds and stories into an energetic and thrilling musical that would transport audiences through one of the most innovative artistic movements of our time.”
Simmons is the co-founder of the highly influential Def Jam Recordings and the founder of the trailblazing Def Comedy franchise. He produced Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway, which went on to win the 2003 Tony Award for Best Special Theatrical Event. (A now defunct category.)
The story of The Scenario will be written by Dan Charnas, who wroteThe Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop and co-authored Def Jam: The First 25 Years of the Last Great Record Label.
The show is aiming to make it to the New York stage in 2016, according to Variety, and it may end up in a “a nontraditional space outside the typical Broadway box.”