NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — It’s an iconic Music City venue that’s featured countless artists and helped kickstart the careers of various country superstars. Now, it’s the muse for an all-new theatrical production.
“Bluebird” is a new musical celebrating the Nashville music scene, inspired by the legendary Bluebird Cafe.
“We’ve been pitched before for other productions and things like that, but this conceptually made sense for who the Bluebird is,” said Erika Wollam Nichols, the cafe’s general manager. “The musical is not about the Bluebird, it’s about the creative community in Nashville and how the Bluebird is like a touchstone for that community.”
For 41 years, the venue has not only been a home for musicians, but it has also helped launch the careers of Taylor Swift, Garth Brooks, Faith Hill, and other artists. The space is known for having an intimate feel with performances “in-the-round” and just 86 seats in the room.
The cafe has been the focus of and a feature in several movies and television shows, including “The Thing Called Love” and “Nashville”. Now, it’s taking to the stage.
Composer Wayne Kirkpatrick — who co-created the popular musical “Something Rotten!” — and songwriter/producer Don Chaffer are co-writing the production’s book, music, and lyrics.
“The music is driving the story,” Wollam Nichols told News 2.
It’s also produced by Steve Buchanan, who produced the TV show “Nashville”.
The creators said it will tell the story of Nashville songwriters and give theatregoers a look into the vibrant, creative community the Bluebird Cafe inspires and nurtures.
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“It really is the chance to tell how important songwriters are to the development of our culture, our emotions, all of those things, so in that way, not only is it like, ‘Oh yay, the Bluebird is getting more visibility,’ sure that is wonderful, but what to me is more wonderful is that opportunity to get an understanding of how important these creators are,” Wollam Nichols explained.
According to Wollam Nichols, she has already heard three songs in the works. Even though it’s a long process before the overture plays and the curtain rises, she said she’s excited to watch the musical take shape.