When Great Minds Think Alike

By Lydia Baxter

Edie Brickell and Steve Martin are somewhat of an unlikely pairing—she’s a well-known singer-songwriter and he’s a comic legend. But they struck gold in 2013 with their Grammy Award-winning album, Love Has Come for You, and again three years later, when Bright Star hit Broadway.

While Brickell and Martin were touring together shortly after their record release, they started discussing their love of musicals.

“We both grew up on them,” said Brickell. “We loved their emotion and their melodies, so we got this hair-brained idea to write one ourselves.”

And just like Brickell and Martin’s solo careers, their collaborative process was unconventional.

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Edie Brickell and Steve Martin.

“Steve would send me his banjo tunes, and I would just walk around my kitchen and sing to them until a song emerged,” explained Brickell. “It was like someone turned a projector on my mind—I would see images and all I had to do was say what I saw…and then make it rhyme, have rhythm, and melody.”

But a musical can’t thrive on music alone, they needed a story. Brickell found a news article from over 100 years ago that sparked Martin’s vivid imagination.

“Once he saw some characters, our musical really just took off,” said Brickell. “And we ended up inspiring each other along the way.”

Bright Star plays in FST’s Gompertz Theatre through January 3 and is part of a four-show subscription package.  Also included in the Mainstage subscription package is the cross-cultural romantic comedy Handle With Care, the gripping new play American Son, and The Legend of Georgia McBridea musical comedy written by the Obie Award-winning playwright Matthew Lopez.

Subscriptions for all four Winter Mainstage shows can be purchased for as little as $69 at (941) 366-9000 or online here.

For more information about Bright Star or to purchase tickets, click here.