Composer Frank Wildhorn (Jekyll & Hyde, The Scarlet Pimpernel) is gunning for Broadway again with Bonnie & Clyde, about the notorious lovers who robbed banks while stealing each other’s hearts.
At a well-attended press sampling yesterday, there were some touch-feely love songs, making me wonder if this will be Assassins meets Grease!.
Are they basically two sweet kids who kill?
“They find themselves in a hell of a time and they’re looking for a way out,” Wildhorn explained to me.
“Clyde had a tough life and lived in a rough-and-tumble neighborhood,” he said.
“Bonnie was a little more starry-eyed and had Hollywood dreams.
“She met him and fell in love. Things got out of hand pretty fast. The first robbery was pretty small-time but disaster struck.”
He added that B&C ended up facing high stakes “and the threat of danger was high,” thereby upping the love story.
How does this compare to the classic movie?
“It’s apples and oranges,” Wildhorn replied.
“So much of the movie is the car chase. We can’t do that in theater, but we can go into their lives in a wonderful way.”
And the story is relevant now, he insisted, “because you read the papers and see stories of desperate people in desperate times trying to figure it out.”
“I hope they can afford tickets,” I quipped.