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Jane Austen Goes Musical At The Globe

This photo shows Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s 2015 production of "Sense and Sensibility," which heads to the Old Globe for its West Coast premiere.
Liz Lauren
This photo shows Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s 2015 production of "Sense and Sensibility," which heads to the Old Globe for its West Coast premiere.
Jane Austen Goes Musical At The Globe
A "Sense and Sensibility" Musical at the Old Globe GUEST:Barbara Gaines, director, "Sense and Sensibility"

It's a classic of literature that has been a movie TV series and the parity. I'm speaking about Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen. Right now at the The Globe it is also a musical. It follows the lives and loves of the Dashwood sisters. Had is one translate this classic to a musical stage. Here to talk about that with this is the director Barbara Gaines. So the opening night tonight. Why did you decide to turn this novel into a musical? It has something to do with San Diego. I saw Paul Gordon the composer and lyricist for sense and sensibility. I saw Anna about eight years ago at The Globe. I fell in love with that play and with Paul's work and we met the creative producer and we formed a deep affection for each other. While we could not get the rights to Emma in Chicago we decided that we did not want anyone to come in between us. We suggested let's to sense and sensibility. I said yes we must. Paul is a conduit between Jane Austen and the year 2016. He has an ability to make something from the 1700s feel like it is happening in your life. It's not just romantic comedy at the time when who you marry determined not just your love life but your whole station in life. Your entire life. Yes. Exactly there were so many rose about marriage. You have to marry within the same class you have to marry within this are that. And all the money went to the oldest son. The second son of the third or fourth good luck to you. There's lots of intrigue. You have two brilliant sisters searching and struggling to find who they belong with. Many of those rules of society get in both of their ways. It is so getting out of it. It's the tension and anxiety that leads to one of the funniest and most romantic place I've yet to see. When you think it lends itself to being a musical And Peter we sing because there's no other way to express ourselves. Emotions are so high and that song and music which is a great connector to all people all over the globe can access not only to ourselves but with everyone so the very first song sung in the show is a song about their dad just died and they don't know what to do with their grief. A lot of emotion and a lot of comedy and with. Jane Austen with cuts to the bone. She will have no hypocrisy thank you very much. We kept it all in the dialogue. It's very funny. It seems very contemporary but there are many lines from Jane who is contemporary. I understand you were not a big Jane Austen fan before this. I would enjoy the movies and TV and read many novels in school but Shakespeare was my one true love. After I saw Emma works so beautifully at the old Globe I said I have to get my hands into this I had to turn it into something that people of all ages would love. We had teenagers in Chicago who came back two and three times and the same thing happened This production has aired in Chicago. It went brilliantly well and was so good for so many people and the really surprising thing where I have proven to be wrong is I thought before it opened that it was going to be women's and teenagers -- teenagers would love it kind of play. The men after the show were crying in my arms and crying not tears of sadness but they were so moved by it by love moving -- winning out. I was so delighted that we could reach all genders and all age brackets with this wonderful universal play about love. It is a wonderful story. Let's get a little taste of what the music sounds like. [music] Okay there is a taste of one of the songs from sense and sensibility. Tell us what is that cut. That is Marianne -- build that meets is gorgeous guy who is so charming the best writer in all of England and it's the story of exactly not really knowing what you need yet. Only the very very lucky few can meet and fall in love in high school. She falls in love with a charming scoundrel. That sets us up for some excitement. We have the most remarkable singers and actors in the show. I think she would've loved the clarity of all the characters that their interrelationships and how they behave is completely true to what is in their novel. Wall Street Journal has that this a winner full of with and romance. It is as light as a -- on its feet as the novel from which it arrives. The grand opening is July 14 at the old Globe but it runs from tonight through August 14. Thank you so much for giving us a little taste. It's always a pleasure and I know your listeners will have a wonderful time at the old Globe.

This week, The Old Globe welcomes all things proper and romantic with a musical version of Jane Austen's "Sense and Sensibility."

Yes, Marianne and Elinor Dashwood still lose their fortune, their home and any respectable dating options. But along with Austen's trademark witty banter, the sisters now also express their woes through song.

The show was first commissioned by Barbara Gaines, the artistic director of Chicago Shakespeare Theater. She was inspired after seeing The Globe's 2011 production of "Emma" and asked composer Paul Gordon to create something for her theater.


Chicago Shakespeare Theater staged the world premiere of "Sense and Sensibility" in April 2015, and she now brings the show to The Globe from July 6 through Aug. 14.

Gaines told Midday Edition Wednesday how the production has evolved, and also admitted that she wasn't much of an Austen fan before this.