Image: Ghostlight Records

More recently, he’s been all over our TV screens as Annie’s aging counterculture boss on Shrill and as a Milo-style alt-right shit stirrer on The Good Fight, but longtime fans of John Cameron Mitchell know that his heart is on the stage: Mitchell got his start in Broadway productions of The Secret Garden, Six Degrees Of Separation, and Big River before originating the role of Hedwig in Hedwig And The Angry Inch, the gender-bending glam musical that launched Mitchell to stardom, off-Broadway in 1998.

Now, Mitchell has a new musical written with composer Bryan Weller coming out, but this one won’t premiere on Broadway. Instead, it’s a musical podcast called Anthem: Homunculus, which debuted earlier this week on podcast streaming service Luminary. It still boasts a Broadway-ready cast, however, featuring Cynthia Erivo, Glenn Close, Nakhane, Patti LuPone, Laurie Anderson, Marion Cotillard, and Denis O’Hare alongside Mitchell himself as Ceann Mackay, a “a broke, solitary, and bitterly funny shut-in” who “launches the world’s first online radio ‘tumor telethon’ to crowdfund his brain cancer care.” In a fun little bit of universe-building, Mitchell tells Broadway.com that Anthem: Homunculus “originally started as a sequel to Hedwig ... the main character of this piece is living in the same trailer that Hedwig lived in but doesn’t know who she is.”

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We’re exclusively premiering the second track from the Anthem: Homunculus soundtrack, “Gog & Demagogue,” below, in advance of its release tonight at midnight. (Two more songs, “Duet With America” and “Metaphor,” will be out tonight as well.) Of the track, Weller says that in fall 2016, “John and I holed up for several weeks in Lawrence, Kansas, staying at William Burroughs’ house, which his estate still owns, and not far from it all his writings, paintings, philosophy are stored. It all seeped deeply into the fabric of Homunculus. I don’t think I finished any songs on that trip, but when John and I returned to NYC, Donald Trump was the president-elect, and we wrote ‘Gog & Demagogue’ a few days later, with a Burroughsian worldview still fresh in our minds.”

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Anthem: Homunculus is streaming weekly on Luminary, and the soundtrack will be out May 20 on Ghostlight Records.

Photo: Ghostlight Records

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Anthem: Homunculus track listing

1 – Homunculus
2 – Gog & Demagogue
3 – Bend You to the Left
4 – Toy Train
5 – State Road
6 – The End of Love
7 – Everybody Look
8 – What’s So Wrong with That?
9 – Second Chance
10 – If You Were Born
11 – I See What I Am
12 – Love You for Free
13 – The Cloud of Unknowing (Joan)
14 – Nobody Blink
15 – The New Messiah
16 – Hymn to Life
17 – I Exist
18 – Philosopher’s Stone
19 – Dissolve Me
20 – Duet with America
21 – Father Angus’ Theme
22 – Metaphor
23 – Prayer of the Mandrake
24 – Unborn/Unsound
25 – The Cloud of Unknowing (Jairo)
26 – Jairo’s Theme, Part 1
27 – The Quiet Savoir
28 – Solar Mass
29 – The Unnameable
30 – Move from Me
31 – The End of Love (Reprise)

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