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Bekah Brunstetter and Ingrid Michaelson to collaborate on Broadway musical, THE NOTEBOOK based on Nicholas Sparks’s best-selling novel
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 11:02 am EST 01/03/19

Bekah Brunstetter and Ingrid Michaelson

will collaborate on a new Broadway musical,

THE NOTEBOOK

based on the best-selling novel by Nicholas Sparks.

Producers Kevin McCollum and Kurt Deutsch in association with Nicholas Sparks
announced today that Bekah Brunstetter and Ingrid Michaelson are developing a new musical adaptation of Nicholas Sparks’s best-selling novel, The Notebook.

Additional creative team members and a production timeline for The Notebook will be announced at a later date.

An achingly tender story about the enduring power of love, The Notebook was best-selling author Nicholas Sparks's first published novel (in 1996). It was on The New York Times Best Seller list in its first week of release and stayed a hardcover best seller for more than a year.

An award-winning film version of The Notebook directed by Nick Cassavetes was released in 2004, starring Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, James Garner and Gena Rowlands.

Bekah Brunstetter, a supervising producer on NBC’s This Is Us, who’s most recent play The Cake opens at the Manhattan Theatre Club in the spring of 2019, said “When I first heard about The Notebook potentially being turned into a musical, I was instantly drawn to the idea. The story hits home for me in two big ways: it takes place in my home state of North Carolina, and Alzheimer's runs deep in my family. I was sent a few songs Ingrid had already written for it, and that week, I spent my drives to and from work car-listening, memorizing, imagining the story unfold with music, imagining how I might layer worlds, dramatize memory, and before I even knew that I had to write the book for this, it was already starting to happen in my head. The older you get, it seems, the more invisible you become, and yet, you have SO much to say -- so putting an older couple at the forefront of a musical is thrilling to me. I am so excited to continue collaborating with Ingrid on bringing this beautiful story to life in a new way.”

Ingrid Michaelson, whose recordings have sold millions of copies, including the Platinum singles “Girls Chase Boys” and “The Way I Am,” said “When I was approached about working on the Notebook I had to excuse myself and go to the bathroom and cry and come back into the meeting. I have loved the movie and the story for so many years now that the idea of turning it into a musical overwhelmed me. The concept of unending devotion and love wrapped up in memory and family is something very close to my own personal life. The story sings to me so perfectly. I actually started writing that very night of the first meeting, before I even had the job! I cannot wait for the world to hear these characters come to life in a musical way.”

Nicholas Sparks said, “I am thrilled to work with Bekah and Ingrid in order to make The Notebook a reality on Broadway. They are amazingly talented, and obviously, the story is near and dear to my heart.”

Producers Kevin McCollum and Kurt Deutsch issued a joint statement: “The creative process works best when the material finds the artist, and that’s exactly what happened with Nicholas Spark’s novel, The Notebook. From day one, Ingrid and Bekah have had a clear vision for the show, and even at this early stage, it has proven to be an exceptionally exciting and fruitful collaboration.”

www.notebookmusical.com

BIOGRAPHIES



Bekah Brunstetter (Book) hails from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and currently lives in Los Angeles. Her plays include: “The Cake” (Echo Theater Los Angeles, Manhattan Theater Club, Spring 2019), “Going to a Place where you Already Are” (South Coast Repertory), “The Oregon Trail” (Portland Center Stage, Flying V), “Cutie and Bear,”, “A Long and Happy Life,” “Be A Good Little Widow” (Ars Nova), and “Oohrah!” (The Atlantic Theater, Steppenwolf Garage, the Finborough Theater / London). Bekah is currently working on two other new musicals, one with Cinco Paul and another with Karen O from the band the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. She is currently a Supervising Producer on NBC’s “This is Us.” She has previously written for MTV’s “Underemployed,” Freeform’s “Switched at Birth,” and Starz’s “American Gods.” In feature films, she wrote the screenplay adaptation of the book THE SECRET, which just wrapped production, starring Katie Holmes and Josh Lucas. Bekah is an alumna of the CTG Writers Group, Primary Stages Writers Group, the Ars Nova Play Group, The Playwright’s Realm, and the Women’s Project Lab. BA UNC Chapel Hill; MFA The New School for Drama.



Ingrid Michaelson (Music and Lyrics) Born in New York City and raised by her mother, a sculptor, and her father, a classical composer, the arts were always close to her heart. At four, Ingrid began taking piano lessons, but it wasn’t until after she graduated college with a degree in musical theatre and was touring the country in a theater troupe that she began to write her own songs. All of Ingrid's music is released on her own independent label, Cabin 24 Records, which has sold over one million albums and 10 million singles to date including the Platinum singles "Girls Chase Boys" and "The Way I Am." While continuing to write music for herself and other artists, Ingrid most recently, made her film debut in the feature film Humor Me. She is also currently co-writing a script about her life for Hulu. Last summer she also made her Broadway debut as Sonya in Natasha, Pierre, and The Great Comet of 1812. For the latest on Ingrid please visit www.ingridmichaelson.com



Nicholas Sparks (Original Author) is one of the world’s most beloved storytellers. All of his books have been New York Times bestsellers, with over 105 million copies sold worldwide, in more than 50 languages, including over 75 million copies in the United States alone. Sparks wrote one of his best-known stories, The Notebook, over a period of six months at age 28. It was published in 1996 and he followed with the novels Message in a Bottle (1998), A Walk to Remember (1999), The Rescue (2000), A Bend in the Road(2001), Nights in Rodanthe (2002), The Guardian (2003), The Wedding (2003), True Believer (2005) and its sequel, At First Sight (2005), Dear John (2006), The Choice(2007), The Lucky One (2008), The Last Song (2009), Safe Haven (2010), The Best of Me (2011), The Longest Ride (2013), See Me (2015), and Two by Two (2016) as well as the 2004 non-fiction memoir Three Weeks With My Brother, co-written with his brother Micah. His twentieth novel, Every Breath, was published on October 16, 2018, debuting at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list, and remaining on the list currently. Film adaptations of Nicholas Sparks novels, including The Choice, The Longest Ride, The Best of Me, Safe Haven (on all of which he served as a producer), The Lucky One, Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, The Notebook, Nights in Rodanthe, Dear John and The Last Song, have had a cumulative worldwide gross of over three-quarters of a billion dollars. In 2012, Sparks and his publishing agent and creative partner Theresa Park, launched Nicholas Sparks Productions, with Park as President of Production. Sparks lives in North Carolina. He contributes to a variety of local and national charities, and is a major contributor to the Creative Writing Program (MFA) at the University of Notre Dame, where he provides scholarships, internships, and a fellowship annually. He co-founded The Epiphany School in New Bern, North Carolina in 2006. As a former full scholarship athlete (he still holds a track and field record at the University of Notre Dame) he also spent four years coaching track and field athletes at the local public high school. In 2009, the team he coached at New Bern High School set a World Junior Indoor Record in the 4 x400 meter, in New York. The record still stands. The Nicholas Sparks Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to improving cultural and international understanding through global education experiences for students of all ages was launched in 2011. Between the foundation, and the personal gifts of the Sparks family, more than $15 million dollars have been distributed to deserving charities, scholarship programs, and projects. Because the Sparks family covers all operational expenses of the foundation, 100% of donations are devoted to programs.



Kevin McCollum (Producer) has received the Tony Award for Best Musical for In the Heights (2008), Avenue Q (2004), and Rent (1996), which also won the Pulitzer Prize. He is currently represented on Broadway with the Olivier Award-winning The Play That Goes Wrong and Mike Birbiglia’s The New One. He produced Something Rotten! (Broadway, National Tour), Hand to God (Broadway, West End), Motown: The Musical (Broadway, West End, and National Tour), The Drowsy Chaperone, which won five Tony Awards, Baz Luhrmann’s production of Puccini’s La Boheme, [title of show], the touring and Broadway productions of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, the off Broadway hit De La Guarda, and the hit revival of West Side Story. Projects currently in development include: a new film adaptation of West Side Story (directed by Steven Spielberg), musical adaptations of The Devil Wears Prada and Mrs. Doubtfire, both in collaboration with Fox Stage Productions, and Ever After (premiering at the Alliance Theater in Atlanta). In 1995 Mr. McCollum co-founded the Producing Office, and has since created Alchemation, a theatrical and media producing company committed to new work. Mr. McCollum was trained at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and earned his Master’s degree in film producing from the Peter Stark Program at the University of Southern California.



Kurt Deutsch (Producer) Grammy Award winner and founder of Sh-K-Boom & Ghostlight Records, Kurt Deutsch is credited with reinventing the musical theatre recording landscape by preserving countless shows in high-quality recordings through close partnerships with Broadway’s top producers, as well as working hand-in-hand with the new generation of theater artists and composers to merge them with the popular culture at-large. He is also SVP of Theatrical and Catalog Development for Warner/Chappell Music Publishing. Prior to entering the music business, Deutsch worked as an actor for over 15 years on and off Broadway, TV, and in film. Deutsch founded Sh-K-Boom Records in 2000 with the mission of bringing passionate, fresh artists and their music to a new audience. To serve the ever-expanding mission of the label the Ghostlight imprint was created in 2004 to include cast recordings and more traditional musical theater albums. Ghostlight Records has become the leading independent force in Original Broadway Cast Recordings – building a library of over 200 records in the last 19 years, featuring some of the most successful Broadway musicals and solo albums by Broadway’s brightest stars. Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight has won three Grammy Awards (for The Book of Mormon, In the Heights and Beautiful – The Carole King Musical) and is a frequent nominee. Other notable releases include cast recordings include the Tony Award winning and Grammy nominated musical The Bands Visit, the phenomenon Be More Chill, Hair, Pippin Next to Normal, The Last Five Years, Newsies, Something Rotten!, The Drowsy Chaperone, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Legally Blonde, Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and many more. The label has also released solo albums from Patti LuPone, Billy Porter, Sutton Foster, Kelli O’Hara, Christine Ebersole, Melissa Errico, Lena Hall, Adam Pascal, Sherie Rene Scott and more. The label continues to support the new generation of musical theatre composers with their extensive relationships with Jason Robert Brown ,Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater, Andrew Lippa, Bill Finn, David Yazbek, Michael John LaChiusa, Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey, , Joe Iconis, Shaina Taub, Zoe Sarnak, Zack Zadek, Drew Gasparini and the legacies of Michael Friedman and Jonathan Larson. Deutsch produced the acclaimed film version of The Last Five Years, written and directed by Richard LaGravenese and starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.
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