Jeff Buckley Meets Shakespeare?

New musical sets Romeo and Juliet to singer's music.

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One is a cult singer-songwriter, the other is England's best known playwright, and both are dead. Yet, Jeff Buckley and William Shakespeare are posthumously joining forces in the form of a new musical directed by Alex Timbers.

As The Guardian reports, The Last Goodbye, which opens in New York next year, will set Romeo and Juliet to Buckley's music. Promotional materials describe "an ensemble of 14 singer/actors bring[ing] to life the lyrical beauty of two great poets set in a world of youthful angst, grandeur and grit" and described the piece as an "incendiary new musical".

Jeff Buckley's mother, who authorized the project, was initially skeptical, describing the play as a "real stretch" back in 2010. However, she has come around to the idea of combining Buckley and Shakespeare, describing the two as "kindred spirits":

"Suddenly I felt that across centuries you had two kindred spirits talking about the same things love, relationships, suffering, death... It was like having my eyes opened to Jeff's music in a new light, a different and very natural light."

The news comes after the announcement of two Jeff Buckley biopics in recent years. Greetings from Tim Buckley will follow the singer's early years and his relationship with his singer-songwriter father, while official biopic "Mystery White Boy" will span the "Lover, You Should Have Come Over" singer's career.

Excited about the project, or unconvinced by the Buckley/Shakespeare tag team? Let us know in the comments.

7 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I adore Jeff Buckley's work, he was an amazing singer and songwriter. I don't think he needs Shakespeare on the bill to make an interesting musical, but I can imagine it being quite possible to combine the two respectfully.