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Alan Menken Joins New Broadway Musical Based on the Life of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, 'Jersey Boys' Des McAnuff to Direct

By Jaime Prisco j.prisco@classicalite.com on Jan 29, 2015 12:17 PM EST

Alan Menken has joined the creative team for the new Broadway-bound bio-musical Happy Trails: The Extraordinary Life and Times of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans in Song & Story. The show focuses on the iconic couple and their influence in American pop-culture history. The creative team for the new show includes director Des McAnuff, who staged the hit Jersey Boys and won a Tony for his work on Big River and The Who’s Tommy.

McAnuff’s latest play Doctor Zhivago will hit the stage in the spring. Marshall Brickman will be writing the book and Menken will compose the score with his lyricist partner Glenn Slater. Previously, Menken has worked on the musical version of Aladdin, Sister Act, Newsies and The Little Mermaid, he has also written all the music for the new ABC series Galavant.

The new show will focus on Rogers’s journey from a poor kid in Ohio to his Hollywood career and marriage to Evans.

"I've been a huge fan of Roy Rogers since I was a kid, so working on this show is a dream come true," said Menken. "Roy Rogers and Dale Evans were consummate, one-of-a-kind entertainers and I'm extremely excited to create a period-specific score that celebrates their legacy.”

Producer Larry G. Spangler and The Spangler Group are aiming to bring the show to Broadway in 2016. They estimate that it will cost $2 million just to put together the production’s cast of animals, which will include a dozen different horses to play Rogers’s well-known steed Trigger and six dogs to portray Bullet the Wonder Dog.

A major publicity push is expected by Spangler, who has had his eyes set on Broadway for a while. Rumor has it that a cattle drive down Broadway may be happening, along with four albums to be released in advance, featuring country music stars covering some of Rogers's classic songs.

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TagsAlan Menken, Broadway Musical, Roy Rogers, Dale Evans, Jersey Boys, Des McAnuff, Happy Trails, The Little Mermaid, Sister Act, Newsies, Aladdin