Foreigner‘s music is headed to the theater stage next year.
The group has announced a new musical, Jukebox Hero, that will debut August 10-12 in Calgary and move to Edmonton on August 16-19, with more dates to be announced. The piece was written by Dick Clement and Ian La Frehais — whose credits include The Tracey Ullman TV Show and the films Across The Universe and The Commitments — and builds its story from 16 of Foreigner’s songs.
In making the announcement, Foreigner founder Mick Jones said that, “I never could have imagined when I set out to create Foreigner forty years ago, that we’d still be touring around the world and performing the music we love all these years later. I am so proud that these songs will now be reinterpreted for stage, and am honored by the team that is helping bring this music to life. I can’t express the gratitude I feel when fans share stories of how our songs have been woven into their milestones and memories over the years. I had so many great times with Foreigner in Canada and…I’m thrilled that Canada will see the world premiere of our brand-new musical, ‘Jukebox Hero,’ in 2018.”
Jukebox Hero is set in Blaydon, Pa., where the town factory has closed and officials seek help from native son Ryan, who’s gone on to become a rock star and has to confront the ghosts of his past as he returns to his home town.
Longtime Foreigner manager Phil Carson said the band, “is proud to be associated with Annerin Productions in bringing Mick Jones’ dream of a production of ‘Jukebox Hero,’ The Musical to fruition,” while Annerin founder and CEO Jeff Parry added that, “If someone would have told me three years ago when Phil Carson and I first met in Dawson Creek (with Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience) that we would have an opportunity to help create a musical in Alberta, destined for Broadway, I would have said that someone is playing ‘Head Games’ with a ‘Dirty White Boy’ from Calgary.”
The announcement comes as part of Foreigner’s 40th anniversary celebration this year, which included the filming of two shows last weekend in Mount Pleasant, Mich., that featured alumni members returning to the fold.
Foreigner kicked off its 10-city Canadian tour on Tuesday (October 11) in Calgary after the musical announcement was made.
Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.