The real story behind the movie “Tick Tick… ​​Boom! »With Andrew Garfield

In January 1996, after years of hardship and odd jobs, Jonathan larson, an American composer and playwright, is finalizing his musical called Rent. The rock opera is an adaptation of the novel by Henry Murger, Scenes from Bohemian Life and opera Bohemian by Giacomo Puccini. On the night of January 25, after the final rehearsals of his show, the playwright died suddenly of an undiagnosed aortic aneurysm at his Manhattan home. He was only 35 years old. The production which opened on Broadway in April of that year will become one of the longest-running musicals to run and win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, a string of Drama Desk. New York shows), as well as four Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Jonathan Larson unfortunately never saw his dream come true. Yet another of his musicals will be produced by David Auburn in 2001 posthumously named after Tick, Tick … BOOM!. It is the tragic story of this failed destiny that recounts the eponymous film starring the actor. Andrew Garfield, Alexandra Schipp and Vanessa Hudgens, which releases this Friday, November 19 on Netflix.

Directed by the actor Lin-Manuel Miranda (Mary Poppins Returns) in collaboration with theater composer David Auburn, the musical drama follows Jonathan Larson on the threshold of his 30s in the early 1990s. While waiting for his artistic career to take off, he works at the Moondance Diner in the Soho district of New York (a job that the interpreter of Spiderman also landed in 2002) to make ends meet. As he grapples with a complicated love life and his best friend’s AIDS diagnosis, the musician and writer despairs that he hasn’t yet written a hit play before his 30th birthday. Entangled in a race against time, he struggles to stage his musical Superbia, on which he has been working for eight years. The film is presented as a semi-autobiography of the famous composer.

First failures and disillusions

Jonathan Larson was born on February 4, 1960 in Mount Vernon, New York. He grew up in White Plains, surrounded by theater clubs where he studied piano and music. After high school, where he played the tuba, he studied theater and began writing musicals at Adelphi University until 1982 when he graduated with honors. Dreaming of Broadway and becoming an actor, he moved to Manhattan. He quickly becomes disillusioned when he arrives in the famous neighborhood and has to work as a waiter in a restaurant to support himself. He begins to write Superbia, an adaptation of the novel by George Orwell 1984. When he does not obtain the rights, the young man decides to create his own dystopia. Although the show was never produced, Jonathan Larson managed to organize a concert at the Village Gate, a nightclub, in Greenwich Village in September 1989.

A prolific and talented author

Like in the movie, Superbia premiered at the non-profit Playwrights Horizons theater, which supports young writers, under the direction ofIra weitzman in 1990. But the project was ultimately unsuccessful. After this disappointment, Jonathan Larson recovered and began writing an autobiographical musical: Tick, Tick … Boom !. Written as a one-man show, he performed at the Village Gate in 1991, then at the Theater Workshop in New York until 1993. As he rose through the ranks of the New York theater community, Jonathan Larson won several awards including the Richard Rodgers Production Award. He also won a Stephen Sondheim Award from the American Music Theater Festival for his eclectic rock score for the musical titled JP Morgan Saves the Nation.

In addition to his productions, he composes songs for children especially for the series Sesame street and for audio books. After years of work, he began to gain the attention of the artistic community in 1995 with Rent, composed five years earlier. The play is set in a disused loft in New York’s East Village and portrays young artists in search of happiness and success who strive to face life’s trials. They are particularly confronted with drugs, poverty and AIDS. Jonathan Larson’s music mixes many musical genres from rock, through pop, dance to R&B. The first staging took place again at the Workshop Theater in 1996. The actors in the production at that time were unknown actors. Idina Menzel, Anthony rapp, Adam pascal, Taye diggs and Jesse L. Martin. The course of his characters is similar to that of Jonathan Larson who also lives in great precariousness, and could not afford cable television. On January 15, ten days before his death, he sold some of his books to buy a movie ticket.

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The real story behind the movie “Tick Tick… ​​Boom! »With Andrew Garfield