As teenage Jasper faces gods and monsters in search of his best friend (and true love) Agnes, he learns to let go of the demons of daily life and embrace the music within. With a pulsating contemporary score and vibrant roots in ancient Greek, Egyptian, Roman, and Norse legends and fables, this spine-tingling, hair-raising, heart-stirring show explores what it means to be truly alive.
A supersized version but still a work in progress, Brandon Ivie’s Jasper In Deadland, billed as “A thrilling new musical in the spirit of RENT and Spring Awakening” is building its audience and actually already has a cult following from its beginnings in New York 2014.
Ryan Scott Oliver and Hunter Foster’s book and music were engaging and entertaining, however, could definitely use a showstopper complete with high flyers, big flashy finishes, breath-taking choreography, you know, the works, though, Louis Hobson, Brandi Chavone Massey, and Diana Huey’s performances stood out, as of course, headliner Matt Doyle and Sydney Shepherd’s Act 2 opening, Something Real, and the finale, One More Day of Snow leaves a mark with its pop cross-over potential. That said, the show should release its recording as there is definite interest, this from overhearing conversations during intermission, as well as social media.
Deadland seems like it can hold off on its own with just a few more polishing. How likely it will make Broadway remains to be seen but if it does, I’d say keep this cast as the chemistry and talent are unquestionable.
Jasper in Deadland continues to run at Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre until May 24 2015.