The world premiere of a stage musical adaptation of the groundbreaking Amazon series “Transparent” will highlight the 2022-23 season of Center Theater Group in Los Angeles, the company announced Thursday.
The production, “A Transparent Musical,” features characters from the original series about a sexagenarian parent in a Jewish Los Angeles family who comes out as a transgender woman. The new musical comedy is billed as “a story of self-discovery, acceptance and celebration.” It will have its world premiere in May at the Mark Taper Forum.
The creator of the original series, Joey Soloway, and MJ Kaufman wrote the book, with music and lyrics by Faith Soloway (who wrote for all four seasons of the television 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 sibling and I have dreamed of creating a stage musical that brings the experiences of being trans and Jewish into a mainstream, pop culture fantasia,” Joey Soloway said in a release.
The original series, which was inspired by the siblings Joey and Faith Soloway’s parent’s own transition later in life, was one of the first mainstream shows to focus on transgender issues when it premiered in 2014. It won eight Emmy Awards, and The New York Times’s Alessandra Stanley praised it as “an insightful, downbeat comedy told without piety or burlesque.” It was also the first scripted series to showcase a transitioning transgender character.
“A Transparent Musical” will begin performances on May 20, 2023, and open on May 31, with a limited run through June 25, 2023.
Center Theater Group, a 55-year-old nonprofit theater, will present the world premiere of Larissa FastHorse’s comedy “Fake It Until You Make It” (Aug. 2-Sept. 3, 2023), about “shifters” — people who exist in a world of self-determined identity. It will also present Jane Wagner’s one-woman play “The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe,” which stars Cecily Strong of “Saturday Night Live” (Sept. 21-Oct. 23); Lynn Nottage’s Tony-nominated truck-stop-set comedy “Clyde’s” (Nov. 15- Dec. 18); and a revival 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 work exclusively by writers who identify as female, transgender or nonbinary, a majority of whom are artists of color, which took shape after the company was called out last fall for its 10-play 2021 -22 season, which included only one work by a woman.