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It appears that 2013 will be a phenomenal year for fans of Christopher Paul Curtis as up to three theatrical productions make their way from the printed page to the stage.
The new year will kick off at Chicago Children's Theatre new permanent location with Christopher’s “Bud, Not Buddy” running January 12 through February 24. Adapted by Reginald Andre Jackson, the jazz-inspired musical has been produced by many of the premiere children’s theatres since 2008 gathering glowing reviews about Bud Caldwell’s sojourn in search of his father during the Great Depression. Award-winning director Derrick Sanders, who’s known for his collaborations with the legendary August Wilson, is sure to continue his phenomenal reputation with another wonderful production.
In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Birmingham’s civil rights movement, the Birmingham Children’s Theatre will present “The Watsons Go To Birmingham – 1963”. Another adaptation by Reginald Andre Jackson, the play chronicles the “Weird Watsons” as they travel from Flint, Michigan to Birmingham, Alabama and become witness to the devastation of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing.
Still in pre-production, the newest stage translation comes from Christopher Paul Curtis’ 2005 publication, “Mr. Chickee’s Funny Money.” Adapted by David Ingber in collaboration with Motown writer Lamont Dozier (of Holland-Dozier-Holland fame), the story centers around nine-year-old Steven whose blind neighborhood presents him with a quadrillion dollar bill featuring James Brown. The whimsical adventure and musical accompaniment are sure to make this theatrical release a major hit for all ages.
© 2012, NOBODY BUT CURTIS
"Curtis effortlessly weaves historical tidbits into his tale, while maintaining his focus on the resolve and faith that drive Deza and her family forward."
- Publishers Weekly, Best Books 2012
"Her spunky attitude and great sense of humor make Deza appealing to girls and boys."
- Tracy Grant, Washington Post
"Deza is one great heroine in her own right, a fitting literary companion to Bud Caldwell."
- Kirkus Reviews
"The strength of this companion to BUD, NOT BUDDY (Delacorte, 1999) is its vivid characterization and clear sense of place and time."
- Marie Orlando, School Library Journal