Monday, March 12, 2007

Da Vinci and Broadway to Collide This Fall

Gerald Calvin, Staff Writer

Controversial author Dan Brown is collaborating with composer Andrew Lloyd Webber to produce what could be the most lucrative Broadway production ever. Brown's publicist released a statement yesterday announcing that Brown and Webber would follow the author's best-selling book The Da Vinci Code and feature film of the same name with a new project, Da Vinci Code: The Musical.

"What Cats did for cat love affairs," the statement reads, "Da Vinci Code: The Musical will do for the love affair between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. Mr. Brown and Mr. Webber will set a new standard for Broadway shows of the future."

Several stars have already signed on to play leading roles. Celine Dion has agreed to play heroine Sophie Neveu; Ric Ocasec, lead singer of the rock group The Cars, will play hero Robert Langdon; and fitness guru Richard Simmons will fill the role of the self-flagellating albino hit man monk Silas.

"I am so excited about this!" bubbled Simmons as he was entering a studio for a taping of his newest project, Sweating to the Gnostics. "I have always wanted to do Broadway! I just love Celine!" Simmons kissed the interviewer and then danced into the studio.

Brown and Webber have already begun work on the score. Brown has provided the inspiration for the unique lyrics, and Webber will fill in the music. The press release listed several of the songs to be featured: "Paris Nights," "Look at Me, I'm Sophie Neveu," "Shakin' at the Louvre Hop," "Art School Dropout," and "We Fit Together."

Like the book and movie before it, controversy is dogging Da Vinci Code: The Musical even though rehearsals have not yet begun. Critics and Bible scholars alike are vigorously protesting, saying that neither Jesus Christ Superstar nor the Gospels give any indication that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene or that the pair had a child together.

"Brown's newest fiasco will confuse people of faith and nonbelievers alike," said Bible scholar Roger Ebert. "He completely ignores the incontrovertible evidence that Jesus had an adulterous affair and a child with Joanna, the wife of Herod's steward Chuza."

Broadway critic Walter Bruggemann was skeptical that Brown had the experience to tackle a stage musical. "It is not easy for an author, even a successful one, to make the transition to Broadway. Dan should probably stick to the things he knows best, biblical scholarship and art history."

Audience members can weigh the evidence for themselves this Fall when Da Vinci Code: The Musical opens at the Ambassador Theater on 49th Street.

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Just had to say it.

8:22 AM  

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