A creative team has been lined up for the musical adaptation of “The Queen’s Gambit.” The previously reported project is currently in development with an intention to debut on Broadway. Heading the creative team will be book writer Eboni Booth, Academy Award-nominated composer/lyricist Mitski and director Whitney White.
Booth was most recently represented on the New York stage as writer of the Off-Broadway play “Primary Trust.” Mitski was nominated for an Oscar (with collaborators David Byrne and Ryan Lott) for penning the song “This Is a Life” from “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” White is the director of the current Broadway play “Jaja’s African Hair Braiding.”
Also newly announced for the “Queen’s Gambit” musical is a group of additional producers. They include Tony Award-winning actor Adrienne Warren, known for “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical”; Tony-winning producer Mara Isaacs, of “Hadestown”; and Lawryn LaCroix, whose producing work includes “POTUS” and “Mike Birbiglia: The Old Man & the Pool.” They join the previously announced Tony-winning producing studio Level Forward, which is behind the current Broadway musical “How to Dance in Ohio.”
Based on Walter Tevis’ 1983 novel and the Emmy Award-winning 2020 Netflix miniseries, “The Queen’s Gambit” tells the story of Beth Harmon, a scrappy orphan who turns into a once-in-a-generation chess prodigy. As soon as she touches a pawn, her senses grow sharper, her thinking clearer and, for the first time in her life, she feels fully in control. By the age of sixteen, she is competing for the U.S. Open championship.
“Before Level Forward even brought the idea of making a musical of ‘The Queen’s Gambit,’ I was a fan of the Netflix show, and an even greater fan of the original novel. So I was already determined to be a member of this team,” said Mitski in a statement. “And then I met Eboni and Whitney, and my determination grew tenfold! I absolutely had to be a part of this! I am ecstatic to get to work with all of these amazing creatives, who’ve each built beautiful and unique repertoires of their own.”
“‘The Queen’s Gambit’ is a wholly original story about yearning for connection and finding your way in life, no matter the barriers,” added Booth. “I couldn’t be more thrilled to explore this world in the company of such extraordinary artists. Musicals are one of my first loves, and I feel so lucky to be tasked with the challenge of bringing Beth Harmon’s haunting and inspiring journey to the stage.”
“Everyone has desires, hopes, aspirations and ideas about who they are and what they can offer the world. ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ takes us into a story of a brilliant young woman on the hunt for all these things,” said White. “It is a story that feels like mine and I’m excited to be a part of this exceptional team creating it anew for the stage.”
Details about the musical’s world premiere production will be announced.