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Doctor's Orders: Ensuring A Long, Healthy Life For Musical Theatre

October 29, 2011 12:30 - October 30, 2011 5:00 pm

The Westin New York at Times Square, 270 West 43rd Street (at 8th Avenue), New York, NY

At the 2011 Fall Conference, we explored the health of musical theatre today, looking holistically at new musical development, financing, working with writers and agents, sharing work for continued life, collaborating with other producers, and more, for an annual check-up of the field. We focused on solutions and results, working together towards a prescription for a long and healthy life!


  • A Keynote speech by legendary director and producer Harold Prince.
  • Panel discussions led by experts in the field on the health and fitness of the art form and industry, with ample audience participation, conversation and Q&A.
  • Extensive networking opportunities, including a networking cocktail party on Saturday night (full open bar and heavy hors d’oeuvres), breakfast and lunch at the Westin on Sunday, and coffee breaks and breakout sessions throughout the weekend.
  • NAMT’s Annual Membership Meeting, with reports from the Board and Staff, during lunch on Sunday.


Michael Baron (Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, OK)
Maria Goyanes (The Public Theater/NYSF, NY)
Robb Hunt (Village Theatre, WA), Chair
Sarah Schlesinger (NYU Tisch School of the Arts Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program, NY)
Chris Scholey (Dancap Productions Inc., Ontario)



Thursday, October 27 – Friday, October 28

Saturday, October 29

NAMT Members: Click here for details on the Post-Festival Members’ Morning, beginning at 9 am.

12:30 pm Registration/Check In

Westin Times Square, Majestic Foyer (5th Floor)

1:00 – 1:15 pm Welcome Remarks

Westin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

1:15 – 2:15 pm Keynote Speaker: Harold Prince

Westin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2The acclaimed director of such shows as She Loves Me, Cabaret, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, Evita, The Phantom of the Opera and Parade, and the producer of The Pajama Game, Damn Yankees, West Side Story, Fiddler on the Roof and many more, will share his thoughts on the state of the American musical today, and preserving its future.

2:15 – 2:45 pm Networking Coffee & Dessert Break

Westin Times Square, Majestic FoyerSponsored by The Marriott Theatre

Marriott Theatre
2:45 – 3:45 pm Panel: The Next Generation of Musical Theatre ArtistsWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

How do we train and sustain young artists — writers, directors, actors and more — to ensure vibrant new work and continued life for the classic canon? Where is the next generation coming from? How are we preparing them to enter a competitive marketplace? Are the NAMT member theatres finding the talent they want and need? How can we support the next generation to sustain both the art form and themselves?

Moderated by Victoria Bussert (Baldwin-Wallace College) and Soren Moeller (The Danish Academy of Musical Theatre), with Henry Fonte (University of Miami), Maria Goyanes (The Public Theater/NYSF), Andrea Lepcio (Dramatists Guild of America), Sarah Schlesinger (NYU Tisch Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program) and Frank Ventura (CAP21).

3:45 – 4:00 pm A Word From Our Sponsor: TravelzooWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2 Travelzoo
4:15 – 5:15 pm Panel: Working Towards DiversityWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

Do our new musicals and their writers reflect the changing population? Is musical theatre relevant in the modern world? Are shows being written that suit our various audiences and communities? Are writers coming from those communities? How can theatres bring audiences along for the ride to take risks with new types of work on new themes?

Moderated by Michael Baron (Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma), with Danny Larsen (The Yellow Wood, Festival 2008), Robert Lee (NYU Tisch Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program), Ralph Remington (National Endowment for the Arts), Darryl Reuben Hall (Stage Aurora Theatrical Company) and Billy Porter (Actor/Director/Choreographer/Writer).

5:30 – 7:30 pm Networking Cocktail PartyGlass House Tavern

252 West 47th Street (between Broadway and 8th Avenue)


Sponsored by Samuel French and Pittsburgh CLO

Samuel French

Pittsburgh CLO

Sunday, October 30

9:00 – 10:00 am Networking Continental Breakfast

Westin Times Square, Majestic FoyerSponsored by Broadway/LA and Theatre Under the Stars


Theatre Under the Stars

10:00 – 11:00 am Panel: Reducing Costs – Producing in the Ongoing RecessionWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

Case studies from members about creative ways they have lowered costs — on both new works and classics — without compromising the work or the audience’s experience. We’ll look at practical solutions to producing in the current economy, maintaining healthy and vibrant theatres, with ideas that are scalable and adaptable to any organization.

Moderated by Chris Scholey (Dancap Productions), with Michael Baron (Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma), Kevin Moriarty (Dallas Theater Center) and Kristin Staskowski (Red Mountain Theatre Company).

11:00 – 11:15 am A Word From Our Sponsor: Theatrical Rights WorldwideWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2
Theatrical Rights Worldwide
11:15 – 11:30 am Break
11:30 am – 12:15 pm Panel: On the RecordWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

How do new shows that don’t go to Broadway get preserved and shared with a wider audience? How does that music live on and make it into the hands of fans, as well as potential future producers of the work? We’ll hear from recording industry experts, plus NAMT members and alumni who have successfully recorded new musicals, about the pleasures and pitfalls of getting your new show on disc or online.

Moderated by Robb Hunt (Village Theatre), with Wayne Bryan (Music Theatre of Wichita), Kurt Deutsch (Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight Records), Sean Flahaven (Warner/Chappell Music), Elizabeth Healy (The Recording Academy), and Cara Reichel & Peter Mills (Golden Boy of the Blue Ridge, Festival 2011; Iron Curtain, Festival 2009).

12:15 – 1:00 pm Panel: Continued Life, ContinuedWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

What is the life of a new American musical. Where do they go? When do they stop being “new”? What development paths are available for new works today? With fewer shows starting out on Broadway, but many regional theatres only interested in world or regional premieres, how are shows entering the canon? Classic musicals have continued life — what’s changed in the last 20 years to change how new works live on? How can NAMT members collaborate to keep great musicals moving forward, sustaining their writers and the art form?

Moderated by Kent Nicholson (Playwrights Horizons), with Doug Cohen (Festival 2008, 2000 and 1994), Kelley Kirkpatrick (Center Theatre Group), Greg Schaffert (321 Theatrical Management) and Marilynn Sheldon (The 5th Avenue Theatre).

1:00 – 2:30 pm Lunch and Annual Membership MeetingWestin Times Square, Broadway Ballroom

A delicious lunch with peer affinity groups to network and brainstorm! Over dessert the NAMT Board of Directors and staff will report on the state of the Alliance and plans for the year ahead.

Sponsored by Disney Theatrical Productions and The 5th Avenue Theatre

Disney Theatrical

5th Avenue Theatre

2:30 – 3:15 pm3:15 – 4:00 pm Concurrent Breakout SessionsRoundtable discussions with experts on special interest topics. Each session will repeat so that you may attend two sessions.

Meet the Licensers

Majestic Ballroom 1

An opportunity to talk to representatives from the major musical licensing houses: Music Theatre International, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Samuel French and Theatrical Rights Worldwide.

Music Prep

Melville Room

If you’re new to producing new work, the costs and logistics of music preparation (arranging, orchestration, and music copying) can sneak up on you. Learn what to expect in this informal session with Sean Flahaven (Warner/Chappell Music), Bruce Coughlin (Orchestrator) and Katharine Edmonds (Emily Grishman Music Preparation).

Working With Actors Equity

Majestic Ballroom 2

Discuss changing Equity rules and how they affect your work and your theatre. Share resources with your fellow NAMT members. Moderated by Robb Hunt (Village Theatre).

Working With Agents and Lawyers

Manhattan Room

Tips and tricks for working with agents and lawyers, straight from the source – Thomas Pearson (ICM) and Marsha Brooks (Brooks and Distler).

4:00 – 4:45 pm Panel: Classics Made NewWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

How do producers of classic musicals keep the work fresh when going back to the same shows their audiences have seen before? How do they attract new audiences or younger crowds to the classics we all love and want to preserve? Plus, when multiple versions of a script, score or orchestrations exist, which one are you able to produce?

Moderated by Steve Stettler (Weston Playhouse Theatre Company), with Bob Alwine (Goodspeed Musicals), Kate Galvin (Walnut Street Theatre), Andy Hite (Marriott Theatre) and more to be announced.

4:45 – 5:00 pm Concluding Remarks/QuestionsWestin Times Square, Majestic Ballroom 2

A quick wrap-up of the Conference, and a chance to ask any questions that weren’t covered earlier.

5:00 pm End of Conference