Nerdy Musical Turning Triangle Into Broadway Suburb

Jan 30, 2013

North Carolina could soon become a proving ground for Broadway shows if one local theater company gets its way. The North Carolina Theatre is showing the techno-geek comedy musical "Nerds" through February 3. It follows Steve Jobs and Bill Gates as they rise to power.

"Nerds" is basically the story of American ingenuity," said producer Carl Levin in an interview with Frank Stasio on "The State of Things." "What an amazing time for two gentlemen, born in 1955... to have parallel lives creating Apple and Microsoft."

"Nerds" is an original production, and that’s a first for the NC Theatre, which typically specializes in revivals. It was brought here by Levin, who had been working on getting the story made into theater for a long time. The death of Steve Jobs finally gave him, and co-writers Jordan Allen-Dutton and Erik Weiner,  the definitive conclusion they needed.

"I don’t want to ruin it," he said. "But Steve does leave us."

Levin and NC Theatre President and CEO Lisa Barrie hope that Broadway leaders who see the show decide it’s ready to make the leap to the big stage in New York City. If so, that could start an exciting precedent for Raleigh as a testing ground for future Broadway hits.

"If the show is about innovation, I think all of us in the performance arts need to think about how we innovate for the future," Barrie said.