As previously announced, the creator of an acclaimed 2016 Shakespeare in the Park production of Twelfth Night has signed on a lyricist for Elton and Paul Rudnick's musical adaptation of The Devil Wears Prada.
Taub: The producers gave me a call, asked if I was interested, and I was extremely interested. I loved the movie, I always have, always thought it would be an amazing musical. And I’m a huge fan of Elton’s work, obviously, for so many years, and it just felt right and worked out. I’ve been working on that since the spring, and I went to London earlier this summer and wrote the first batch of songs with Elton. It’s just a thrill. He’s an incredible artist and so kind, and so open, and so collaborative, and it’s just been a really powerful experience to work with a legend who really is an artist who loves making music and loves to collaborate with new people. It’s just been a wonderful experience so far, and I’m excited to keep going.
Deadline: It must be an odd feeling to think of yourself as going where Bernie Taupin went. It’s got to be sort of intimidating.
Taub: It is, but it’s thrilling. Usually I write music and lyrics, but to focus on creating lyrics that will work with his melodies, I’m learning so much. I feel like I’m going to grow a lot as an artist, and feel doubly lucky that it’s a story and characters that I love, and that I think really belong onstage, a story where two women are at the center of of it, and the main plot has to do with their ambition and their business and power. That’s a story I haven’t seen a lot in musicals onstage.
Deadline: What can you tell us about the adaptation? What will be different from the movie?
Taub: We’re early enough in that process that I would hesitate to say too much, but I think we all love those characters, we all love Miranda Priestly and Andy Sachs, and to me it’s about doing justice to that story and those characters, and also heightening them for the stage. Finding that balance with any adaptation between giving fans what they want and helping to look at it in a new way. I feel that way with the Shakespeares as well, these time-worn classic plays that people have seen over and over again, and know and love. I want to honour that, but I also want to bring a new perspective.