A young musical theater composer named Adam Gwon is the winner of the fourth annual Fred Ebb award, which he picked up in New York last night. Great, I support supporting young musical theater composers.
I'm fairly certain Gwon's work, which includes adaptations of the Fitzgerald story "Bernice Bobs Her Hair," Wharton's Ethan Frome and Wedekind's Lulu along with several original works, hasn't been seen in Chicago. But what's of note to us here (aside from the whole supporting-the-continuing-health-of-the-musical bit) is buried deep in the last graf of the press release (oops, I mean "article," sorry Playbill.com!): "He is currently working on an original musical with playwright Sarah Hammond, commissioned by Broadway Across America, and an adaptation of Joe Meno's The Boy Detective Fails, commissioned by Signature Theatre in Arlington, VA."
Joe Meno is, of course, a Chicagoan (and not-for-nothing one of Time Out's Cultural Heroes). More to the point, Chicago theatergoers know that Boy Detective has already been adapted for the stage. Meno's own version was produced by the House Theatre two summers ago, months before the book itself hit the shelves (aside from the shelves of the House's swag booth at the Viaduct).
Gwon's one of a handful of young composers with musicals in development thanks to a grant program administered by Signature and "under the guidance of Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer" (careful with that). Hard to tell how involved, if at all, Meno is in Gwon's work; perhaps he'll weigh in here.