It’s been four years since Cameron Crowe first teased an Almost Famous musical when he dropped a 20-second video of composer Tom Kitt playing piano, while William Miller’s signature yellow post-its displayed clues on the wall. Now, Crowe is officially bringing his beloved film to Broadway, slated to open on Oct. 11.
Crowe first announced the adaptation in the fall of 2018, and it opened the following year in his hometown of San Diego, California (Joni Mitchell made a rare appearance at the premiere). After being stalled by the pandemic, the production is finally making its way to the East Coast, opening at a Shubert theater to be announced shortly.
Like the 2000 film, the musical chronicles Crowe’s teenage years as a Rolling Stone writer in the early Seventies, told through the lens of Miller. He joins the band Stillwater on the road, profiling them for the cover of RS, and learns a thing or two about life along the way.
The musical will be directed by Jeremy Herrin, known for 2017’s People, Places and Things, with original music by Kitt (who recently worked on Jagged Little Pill). Crowe adapted his Oscar-winning screenplay to the book and co-wrote the lyrics with Kitt. The production stars Casey Likes as Miller, Chris Wood as Russell Hammond, Solea Pfeiffer as Penny Lane, and others. Tickets go on sale Thursday at 10 a.m. ET.
“This cast came together over a period of years, and when we played the show in San Diego, it was an incredibly emotional experience,” Crowe tells Rolling Stone. “I was there nightly to watch, it felt like following a band you love. We all stayed close through the pandemic. It’s such a statement that nearly the entire cast was able to come back to tell the story. Someone said to me the other day, ‘Was it always your dream as a kid to write a musical for Broadway?’ All I could think was, my dream as a kid was to afford buying records and to get an article published in Rolling Stone. Everything after that has been a rollercoaster and a gift that came from loving music … which coincidentally, is kind of what the play is about.”
Accompanying the announcement is “Everybody’s Coming Together,” which you can hear below, in a video directed by Crowe. The Original Broadway Cast Album will arrive this fall.
Crowe’s 2000 Oscar-winning film recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, where the cast (Kate Hudson, Billy Crudup, Frances McDormand, and more) participated in a podcast and a Zoom reunion. Crowe commemorated the anniversary with an extensive interview, a virtual trip through his archives, and a massive reissue of the soundtrack.
“Broadway fans and rock fans have so much in common,” Crowe added. “We obsess over the music, we pour over every possible recording we find, and we treasure those moments when an artist stands on a stage, opens their heart in that most personal way, and creates real magic. Suddenly everything seems possible. Almost Famous has always been about the power of that connection: hearing a piece of music for the first time, looking into a person’s eyes and feeling the electricity, finding your tribe. The line ‘It’s all happening’ has always been so key to the show, and now that we’re heading to Broadway, it’s finally come true. It actually is… all happening.”