Posted on July 24, 2019 at 2:26 am

I started writing Parade twenty-five years ago, in 1994, and today I happened to be doing some work in my storage unit when I found a couple of really fun pieces of history from that show.

This is my pencil draft for the lyrics of “Come Up To My Office.” The monologue at the top is what Alfred Uhry sent me initially to give me some lyric ideas, and you can see how I took little phrases of his and used them as punch lines in my version. You can also see the title we were using for the show at the time, The Devil and Little Mary. (We knew it wasn’t quite right but we hadn’t come up with anything better.)

Here’s my rough pencil sketch for the Factory Girls section. I think it’s funny that while this melody is sung in about eight different keys over the course of the show, it’s never actually sung in E minor, the key in which I apparently originally conceived it. (You can try that phone number at the bottom of the page but I haven’t lived there since 1997.)

Leo’s Statement to the court, “It’s Hard To Speak My Heart,” spilling from my brain right to the paper (in ballpoint pen, no less). Clearly I kept working on the lyrics, but a lot of the ideas are already here.

And finally, I found most of my old casting sheets, and this made me laugh. Anne Hathaway was 15 years old when she came in to audition for the role of Mary Phagan. Apparently she didn’t make a strong impression on the team, but at least I “thought it was a nice try.” (My total inability to see into the future is reinforced by the story of how I cast Ansel Elgort in 13 and then fired him before we started performances.)

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