I’m a teacher. As such, I like to read what my students read, and so I read a lot of Young Adult books (also, let’s be honest, YA books are awesome). I’m also a Broadway enthusiast, which you probably realize if you read this blog or know me at all. Today, I am combining those two and making a list of the YA books I’d most like to see turned into Broadway musicals.
Just One Day/Just One Year by Gayle Forman – I made this list specifically to name these books. I LOVE this series. Every time I go back and read it, I love it more. I love that it’s a love story, I love the settings (especially in Europe), but most of all, I love that these books are about finding yourself. I think these parallel stories would translate beautifully to the stage, especially with composers like Jason Robert Brown or Pasek and Paul at the helm, to help with soaring melodies.
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins – This is a little out there. You don’t typically think of anything dystopian working as a musical (though I’d argue that Urinetown did a nice job), but with the innovations in theater lately, I think it could turn out really haunting. Think about an immersive theater experience, with someone like Rachel Chavkin (The Great Comet) directing. It could be a suspenseful Broadway hit.
Once and For All by Sarah Dessen – I had trouble deciding which Sarah Dessen book I’d like to see onstage. Her books are so emotional (in a good way), and I think they’d really lend themselves to a beautiful musical. I chose Once and For All because it’s set around weddings, which always brings in the higher stakes (think It Shoulda Been You). Plus, there’s a dog, and if you’re like me, you squee out loud every time you see a dog onstage.
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell – I love this book. It speaks to me on a very personal level. The reason I chose this for a musical is because you’d actually get to have two musicals in one. Contemporary teenage musical (like 13) and high fantasy, when she is reading Carry On Simon Snow (Wicked). It would provide a little bit of something for everyone, and I think it would be a lot of fun.