Octavia Butler's 1993 dystopian novel Parable of the Sower has been set to music. The rock opera adaptation of the same name will hold its New York debut on January 8 at the Public Theater. The genre-bending musical was brought to life by Toshi Reagon and her mother, famed singer and activist Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon.
Parable of the Sower follows an American teenager in the mid-2020s who forms a new spiritual community in California. The book is referenced in Talib Kweli's 2005 song "Ms. Hill," where he describes Lauryn Hill's mother buying the book from his Brooklyn bookstore, noting that the main character's name is Lauren.
According to the show's original Kickstarter, the hope is to eventually make the musical available to communities and performers around the country.