2 Acts, Book Musical, Rated PG-13
Original Off-Broadway Version (1995)
An intimate look at the complexities of familial relationships in a changing America.
A truly original musical honoring brothers and sisters and parents and children, set against the background of a changing America between 1950 and 1990, John & Jen is a gem of a show brimming with intelligence, wit and beautiful melodies.
This is the story of Jen and her relationships with the two Johns of her life: her younger brother, who was killed in Vietnam, and his namesake, her son who is trying to find his way in a confusing world. Jen and her younger brother John are growing up in the ever-changing world of mid-century America. As the country becomes divided over the war in Vietnam, so does the family, and battle lines are drawn between the once-close siblings. When John is killed in Vietnam, Jen is left to reconcile her memory of their fractured relationship along with his namesake, her son who is trying to find his way in a confusing world.
With a cast of only two people, John & Jen is a tour-de-force for two actors who take them from childhood, through adolescence and beyond. A chamber musical, beautifully scored for piano, cello and percussion, John & Jen is a musical about connections, commitments and the healing of the human heart.
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Kurt Weill’s ("Berlin to Broadway") greatest theatrical success came after his death with The Threepenny Opera when it opened off-Broadway in 1954. Starring his widow, Lotte Lenya, it went on to run over 2,600 performances.