Harry Connick Jr. has a busy fall ahead of him. Along with the simultaneous release of a solo piano album and a disc of Hollywood showtunes recorded with his big band and orchestra, the artist has con

Harry Connick Jr. has a busy fall ahead of him. Along with the simultaneous release of a solo piano album and a disc of Hollywood showtunes recorded with his big band and orchestra, the artist has contributed the music to the Broadway musical "Thou Shalt Not," and will be seen in the film "The Simian Line." The albums will be released Oct. 23 via Columbia; "Thou Shalt Not" opens Oct. 25 at New York's Plymouth Theatre (previews begin Sept. 20).

Dubbed "30," the piano album features guest performances by jazz trumpet great Wynton Marsalis, bassist Ben Wolfe, and late gospel vocalist Rev. James Moore, and focuses on Connick's New Orleans musical roots. Among the songs tackled are "Chattanooga Choo Choo," "Somewhere My Love," and "Way Down Yonder in New Orleans." Conversely, the big band album, "Songs I Heard," will find Connick interpreting songs from such Hollywood musical classics as "Annie," "Mary Poppins," "The Wizard of Oz," "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory," and "The Sound of Music."

Rehearsals for "Thou Shalt Not," based on the Emile Zola novel "Therese Raquin," begin this week in New York. Craig Bierko stars in the Susan Stroman-directed production, for which Connick wrote the music, lyrics, and score. Connick will also produce the show's cast recording.

As if that wasn't enough, Connick will soon be seen on the big screen in "The Simian Line." Due in U.S. theaters in November, "Simian" is an improvisational film by Linda Yellan that features an ensemble cast of Lynn Redgrave, Eric Stoltz, Tyne Daly, and Cindy Crawford.

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