Stage Door News

Toronto: Nolen Dubuc, the Stratford Festival’s Billy Elliot, is in the cast of Jason Robert Brown’s film of “13”

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Netflix has locked down the cast to its upcoming feature adaptation of Broadway’s 13: The Musical. 

The musical, which ran from October 2008 to January 2009 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre follows Evan Goldman (12) who following a move from NYC to small-town Indiana, grapples with his parents’ divorce, prepares for his impending Bar Mitzvah, and navigates the complicated social circles of a new school.

The Broadway version featured the first and only all-teenage cast and band and served as professional debuts of Ariana Grande and Elizabeth Gillies. The musical has since been a popular production of high school theater groups.

Of the 14 starring in 13: The Musical include Eli Golden (The Wizard of Lies), Gabriella Uhl, JD McCrary (Black Is King, The Lion King, The Payne’s, Little), Frankie McNellis (Sony’s Honey Girls, Black-ish), Lindsey Blackwell (The Change-Up), Jonathan Lengel, Ramon Reed (Disney Channel’s Just Roll With It), Nolen Dubuc (Good Boys), Luke Islam (The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers), Shechinah Mpumlwana (Uncorked, Blue’s Clues & You), Kayleigh Cerezo, Wyatt Moss (The Move), Liam Wignall, and Khiyla Aynne (Work It, Ponysitters Club).

Fans of Ontario’s Stratford Festival will remember Nolen Dubuc for his performance in the title role in the Festival’s 2019 Billy Elliot directed by Donna Feore.

Tony Award winner Robert Horn (Tootsie the Musical, Teen Beach movie) will adapt the script based on the book he co-wrote with Dan Elish for the original Broadway version of 13; 3x Tony Award winner Jason Robert Brown, who served as the composer and lyricist for the Broadway production, will compose new music; and Tamra Davis (Crossroads, High School Musical: The Series, Slinky) attached to direct. Primetime Emmy winner Neil Meron, who produced Chicago and Hairspray, is producing 13. EPs are Davis, Horn, Brown, Mark Nicholson and Bob Boyett.

13: The Musical joins Netflix’s growing slate of live-action family movies including Skater Girl from first time director Manjari Makijany and He’s All That starring Addison Rae and Tanner Buchanan directed by Mark Waters (Mean Girls) . Recent releases include Finding ‘Ohana, directed by Jude Weng (Fresh Off the Boat) and starring Kea Peahu and Alex Aiono; Feel the Beat, directed by Elissa Down (The Honor List) and starring Sofia Carson; and 2019 comedy Tall Girl, directed by Nzingha Stewart (Little Fires Everywhere) and starring Ava Michelle.

From Anthony D’Alessandro for

Photo: Nolen Dubuc as Billy Elliot. © 2019 Stratford Festival; top row: Eli Golden, Gabriella Uhl, JD McCrary, Frankie McNellis; mid row : Lindsey Blackwell, Jonathan Lengel, Ramon Reed, Nolen Dubuc, Luke Islam; bottom row: Shechinah Mpumlwana, Kayleigh Cerezo, Wyatt Moss, Liam Wignall, Khiyla Aynne. © 2021 Netflix.