The world premiere of a stage musical adaptation of Amazon’s groundbreaking series “Transparent” will highlight the Center Theater Group’s 2022-23 season in Los Angeles, the company announced Thursday.
The production, “A Transparent Musical,” features characters from the original series about a 60-year-old relative from a Jewish family in Los Angeles who comes out as a transgender woman. The new musical is billed as “a story of self-discovery, acceptance and celebration.” It will have its world premiere in May at the Mark Taper Forum.
Original series creator Joey Soloway and MJ Kaufman wrote the book, with music and lyrics by Faith Soloway (who wrote for all four seasons of the TV series and composed the songs for its finale). The choreography is by James Aslop (“Girls5eva”), and it will be directed by Tina Landau (“SpongeBob SquarePants: The Broadway Musical”).
“My brother and I dreamed of creating a musical that brings the experiences of being trans and Jewish into a mainstream pop culture fantasy,” Joey Soloway said in a statement.
The original series, which was inspired by sibling Joey and Faith Soloway’s parents’ own transition into later life, was one of the first mainstream shows to focus on transgender issues when it premiered in 2014. She won eight Emmy Awards and the New York Times. Alessandra Stanley rented it as “an insightful, upbeat comedy told without piety or slapstick”. It was also the first scripted series to feature a transitioning transgender character.
“A Transparent Musical” will begin performances on May 20, 2023 and open on May 31, with a limited broadcast until June 25, 2023.
Center Theater Group, a 55-year-old non-profit theater, will feature the world premiere of Larissa FastHorse’s comedy “Fake It Until You Make It” (August 2-September 3, 2023), about “shifters” – people who exist in a world of self-determined identity. It will also feature Jane Wagner’s solo play “The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe,” which features Cecily Strong of “Saturday Night Live” (September 21-October 23); “Clyde’s,” Lynn Nottage’s Tony Award-nominated comedy (November 15-December 18); and a cover of Anna Deavere Smith’s “Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992” (March 8-April 9, 2023) at the Taper.
The productions are part of a Center Group season that includes works exclusively by writers who identify as female, transgender or non-binary, the majority of whom are artists of color, who took shape after the company has been called last fall for its 10-game 2021-22 season, which included only one work by a woman.