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May 20th – June 12th, 2016
La Mama Theater in Downtown Manhattan.
CHERCHEZ LA FEMME is a musical extravaganza that tells the story of one man’s loss and another man’s gain and the powerful women who make it all possible. It explores dark themes (abandonment, sibling rivalry, unrequited love) and light themes (sexual healing, the pursuit of happiness, the smell of success) but never without inviting you to shake your head and tap your toes to the infectious neo-urban-jungle grooves. The play is set in New York City and the Caribbean in the 1980’s. It’s reckless. It’s rhythmic. It’s romantic.
30 years ago Vivien Goldman interviewed me in London for a magazine called NME. My alter ego, KID CREOLE, had just released an album entitled TROPICAL GANGSTERS on the Island Records label. It was a hit. The interview lasted 3 hours and 35 minutes. A friendship was formed. 7 years ago Vivien visited me in my home in the idyllic Swedish countryside. We joked about writing a musical. The joke became a reality. The first draft of the play was written in 6 days. At first it was called I’M A WONDERFUL THING, BABY.
1 year ago Vivien met an actor named Julius Hollingsworth. She spoke to him about the musical. Julius said “Hey, I have done some work with the La Mama group in downtown Manhattan. Perhaps they would be interested in this!” Behold! Fate rears its magnificent head out of the wilderness. In the Spring of last year, a staged reading of that play (in its 7th re-write) was presented at the LaMama rehearsal space. It was now called CHERCHEZ LA FEMME. The room was packed with fans of KID CREOLE AND THE COCONUTS and DR BUZZARD’S ORIGINAL SAVANNAH BAND and with music lovers of all ages.
The staged readings were very successful. They led directly to yet another re-write and an invitation to entertain the masses at the Ellen Stewart Theatre! Pow! A dream deferred becomes a dream deferred no longer.