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Prince's 'Purple Rain' is becoming a stage musical

The late musician Prince, performing at the Super Bowl in 2007 in Miami Gardens, Fla.
Jonathan Daniel
Getty Images
The late musician Prince, performing at the Super Bowl in 2007 in Miami Gardens, Fla.

Prince's music is becoming a stage musical — eventually.

Producer Orin Wolf announced Monday that he is developing a stage version of Purple Rain — the 1984, vaguely autobiographical film that made Prince a megastar and won him an Oscar for Best Original Song Score. In the film version, Prince starred as The Kid, an emerging musician on the Minneapolis rock scene.

Wolf's credits include the Tony Award-winning The Band's Visit — another movie-turned-musical. He has already enlisted playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins to write the new musical's book; Jacobs-Jenkins is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist for his plays Gloria and Everybody. Also on board is director Lileana Blain-Cruz, a Tony Award nominee for The Skin of Our Teeth at Lincoln Center.

Other information, including when and where this musical will be launched, has yet to be announced; it is likely that Purple Rain, like most other musicals, would have a tryout run off-Broadway or outside of the city before attempting a run on Broadway.

Prince died in 2016 without a will. His estate and the rights to his music were only settled in 2022.

Copyright 2024 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Anastasia Tsioulcas is a reporter on NPR's Arts desk. She is intensely interested in the arts at the intersection of culture, politics, economics and identity, and primarily reports on music. Recently, she has extensively covered gender issues and #MeToo in the music industry, including backstage tumult and alleged secret deals in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against megastar singer Plácido Domingo; gender inequity issues at the Grammy Awards and the myriad accusations of sexual misconduct against singer R. Kelly.