The Blue and Gold

Joe Iconis

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Joe Iconis

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The date is September 30, 2018. The off-Broadway cast of Be More Chill has gathered for a special announcement. The sci-fi musical will be making its Broadway debut in January of 2019. Joe Iconis has written yet another show that has taken the internet by storm. How did this writer and performer become so successful?

Joseph Peter Philip Iconis was born on September 22, 1981 in New York. He studied at NYU and received a B.M. in music composition. In 2006 he was a recipient of the Jonathan Larson Award, granted for investment in individual talent. In 2007, he received the Ed Kleban Award and a Backstage Bistro Award, both recognizing his lyrical talent. Iconis can often be seen performing in the Joe Iconis Rock and Roll Jamboree, where he performed a collection of songs with his musical theater family. Joining Iconis were fellow vocalists such as Matt Hinkley, Eris William Morris, and Lance Rubin. “The arrangements are all based on ones we’ve been playing live for years,” said Iconis in a statement. “But they are adapted for this album. Showy and huge, we were more interested in capturing the spirit of the live show than we were in trying to recreate it.” A few of these songs, such as The Vagabond and Lisa, made it into He also wrote the song “Broadway, Here I Come!,” which was featured on the second season of the NBC show Smash.

Iconis began working on his first musical, The Black Suits, in 2003 while he was still in school. This show was about a high school garage band attempting to win their town’s band competition in Long Island. Actors Ben Platt and Will Roland were included in the cast, along with other soon-to-be famous Broadway stars. The show ran in 2008, 2012, and 2013 in workshops and two world premieres. He wrote four more musicals before his most popular one, Be More Chill.

Be More Chill premiered at the Two River Theatre in New Jersey on May 30, 2015. Soon after, the audience shared their experience on the internet and a large fanbase grew. The popularity of the sci-fi show led to it moving to off -Broadway with the same cast, including Joe’s wife, Lauren Marcus. The show continued to grow in popularity, and in fall of 2018, it was announced that Be More Chill would be upgrading to Broadway in February 2019 at the Lyceum Theatre. Thousands of fans online learned about Iconis’s other works, and he started making songs with a close friend, George Salazar.

 

Salazar has been in Be More Chill since the very beginning, and his video game-loving character Michael Mell was a favorite among fans. He and Iconis started a small stage show together called Two Player Game, named after the high-energy song from Be More Chill. The charismatic duo performed at 54 and Below, a musical dining experience in New York. Most of the Two Player Game album was made up of songs Iconis had written in the past for shows he didn’t finish, but songs from Be More Chill were snuck in. Salazar’s mesmerizing voice and Iconis’s piano skills touched fans and the more emotional songs, such as Kaboom, had a special place in the hearts of musical theater fans everywhere.  

Joe Iconis inspires fans everywhere with his unique music style and devotion to relatable characters. With the Broadway update of Be More Chill and a plan to start writing yet another hit, Iconis will continue to create new worlds for the stage.

 

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