23rd Annual Festival of New Musicals
October 27 - 28
The 23rd Annual Festival of New Musicals was held in New York City on Thursday, October 27 and Friday, October 28, 2011, introducing a select audience of NAMT members, producers and other musical theatre industry professionals to eight new musicals in 45-minute presentations. According to American Theatre Magazine, “It’s an industry-only event, and it happens for only two days, but it makes a major impact in the world of musical theatre.”
NAMT was honored to return to New World Stages for our 8th consecutive year to present this Festival.Festival Program
Bernice Bobs Her Hair
Steven Booth, Josh Breckenridge, Demi Fragale, Olli Haaskivi, Brynn O'Malley, Olivia Oguma, Will Reynolds, Courtney Stokes, Derrick Trumbly, Casey Tuma and Kate Wetherhead
Ideal Cast Size: 13
Ideal Band Size: Piano + TBD
Style: Musical Comedy
Genre & Style:
Bernice Bobs Her HairÂ is based on the classic short story of the same name by F. Scott Fitzgerald as well as letters he wrote to his sister. Â It is a story of “the shifting, semi-cruel world of adolescence” set in a time of transformation for American women. Young men and women dance and flirt and engage in character assassination in the time honored pursuit of romance and status. The story is retold with an eye to the future which Fitzgerald anticipates but could not have predicted.
Bloodsong Of Love
Carrie Cimma, Rebecca Naomi Jones, Jeremy Morse, Lance Rubin and Jason "Sweet Tooth" Williams
Ideal Cast Size: 4 Fellas, 2 Ladies
Ideal Band Size: 5 Musicians
Style: Rock ‘n’ Roll Spaghetti Western
Genre & Style:
Bloodsong of LoveÂ is a musical theater interpretation of the Spaghetti Western film genre. It follows the story of a wandering guitarist known only as The Musician who is on a journey to reclaim his bride from the evil clutches of Lo Cocodrilo. The Musician navigates his way through a bizarre and hyper-stylized world of maimed prostitutes, one-eyed bartenders, shoot â€˜em ups, midnight hallucinations, and lots and lots of blood.
River Alexander, Rozi Baker, Chris Hoch and Kate Shindle
Ideal Cast Size: 4
Ideal Band Size: 3
Style: Dark Musical Comedy
Genre & Style:
Dani Girl is the inspiring and humorous story of a young girl’s battle with a life-threatening disease. Far from sitting back and accepting her condition, Dani transforms her struggle into a fantastical adventure. Together with her teddy bear, imaginary guardian angel, and movie-obsessed hospital roommate, she battles a personified Cancer across the realms of fantasy and reality as she attempts to get her beloved hair back. Told from a child’s perspective, this provocative musical explores the universal themes of life in the face of death, hope in the face of despair, and the indomitable power of imagination.
The Dogs Of Pripyat
Alex Brightman, Kerry Butler, Chris Hoch, Gwen Hollander, Eliseo Roman, William Ryall and Kate Shindle
Ideal Cast Size: 8 or 10
Ideal Band Size: 1-6
Style: A fable for adults
Genre & Style:
USSR, 1986. As all humans are evacuated from Chernobyl, their pets are left behind to fend for themselves. This is the story of those animals. Boychik is a gentle mutt who pines for his masters’ return. But when a corrupt Rottweiler takes control, Boychik learns how to hunt, kill and ultimately form a new kind of family. Based on true events,Â The Dogs of PripyatÂ asks what it means to be a family, a friend, and, ultimately, what it means to be a dog in our increasingly frightening post-Katrina, post-Fukushima world. It’s a story about hope and survival when they seem least possible.
Golden Boy Of The Blue Ridge
Kenneth Cavett, Joanna Glushak, Anika Larsen, Kyle Dean Massey, Spencer Moses and Dan Sharkey
Ideal Cast/Band Size: 11 (6 actors, 4 actor/musicians, 1 music director)
Style: Black Comedy
Genre & Style:
A pitch-dark comedy with the kick of moonshine,Â Golden Boy of the Blue RidgeÂ transplants J.M. Synge’s classicÂ The Playboy of the Western WorldÂ to 1930s Appalachia. Bluegrass music and backwoods mayhem abound in this coming-of-age story about a slapdash murder, a whirlwind romance, and a most unlikely hero.
Notes To Marianne
Stephen Bogardus, Haley Bond, Charlie Brady, Will Erat, Santino Fontana, Megan Lawrence, Vasthy Mompoint, Rachel Stern and Ken Triwush
Ideal Cast Size: 8
Ideal Band Size: 6
Style: American Family Drama
Sometimes we leave someone we love. At 12 years old, Johnny ran away from home, leaving behind his sister MariAnne — a regret he can’t shake. That was in 1952. Ten years later, the estranged pair are swept into a series of extraordinary events that will bring them to a pivotal reunionÂ The set is sparse yet the story stretches from Brooklyn to Kansas. The cross-country journey rides a wave of American pop music, from early ’60s rock to ’30s saloon songs to contemporary beats and melody. A modern fairy tale,Â notes to MariAnneÂ explores the consequences of leaving those we love and finding new hope in the most unexpected places.
Robert Mark Brokaw
Krystina Alabado, Ally Bonino, Robi Hager, Emma Hunton, Phoebe Strole, Stephanie Umoh and Emily Walton
Ideal Cast Size: 7-8
Ideal Band Size: 6
Style: Pop/Rock-infused Teen Drama
Genre & Style:
Pregnancy PactÂ is a pop-rock musical about a group of teens who make a pact to become single mothers together. 15-year-old Maddie is devoted to herÂ three bestÂ friends and they are to her. So when Brynn gets pregnant, theÂ friends all plan to haveÂ children, raising them together in a dream of aÂ perfect life. Â Their pact grows as other girls find out andÂ want in. The bubble finally bursts when their secret is revealed, leaving each of the girls to face the hardÂ realities ofÂ love, responsibilityÂ and growing up.
Liz Callaway, Ryan Duncan, John Treacy Egan, Trent Armand Kendall, Ken Marks, Emily Rossell and Pearl Sun
Ideal Cast Size: 7-10
Ideal Band Size: 4
Style: Satirical Rock Comedy
Genre & Style:
Watt?!?Â is a balls-out rock musical telling the heroic true story of James Watt, Ronald Reagan’s Secretary of the Interior, who opened millions of acres of federal land for exploitation, banned the Beach Boys from July 4th festivities, and was ultimately fired for referring to a five-person panel as â€œa black, two Jews, a woman and a cripple. â€
NEXT THING YOU KNOW by Ryan Cunningham & Joshua Salzman
FEBRUARY HOUSE by Seth Bockley & Gabriel Kahane
BLOOD MAGIC by Aaron Jafferis & Ian Williams
SAINT-EX by Sean Barry & Jenny Giering
LOVE KILLS by Kyle Jarrow
SNOW by Sean Hartley
POST OFFICE by Michael Friedman & Melissa James Gibson
Writers & Artists
Book & Lyrics, The Dogs Of Pripyat
Jill Abramovitz BMI Workshop (Harrington Award), Dramatists Guild Fellow, Weston Playhouse New Musical Award (Dogs of Pripyat). Contributing lyricist on It Shoulda Been You, past NAMT selectee now headed for the George Street Playhouse and The Village Theatre. Currently adapting Martha Speaks for Theatreworks USA with composer/husband Brad Alexander, with whom she is also adapting the film Bread and Roses. Acting credits include 9 to 5 and Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me on Broadway, and many off-Broadway and regional credits including past NAMT shows See Rock City (Barrington Stage) and Band Geeks (Goodspeed).
Music, The Dogs Of Pripyat
Composer/Additional Lyricist: Nona (commissioned by Weston. Six productions including The Atlantic Theatre and a National Tour by Maximum Entertainment.);Training: Dramatists Guild Fellow, BMI Workshop (Harrington Award). B’way: Sister Act (Assistant Conductor), Little Mermaid (Keyboard 1), Billy Elliot (Casting, Rehearsal Pianist). Regional: Calvin Berger at George Street (Incidental Music/Music Director). Workshops: Aladdin, Up Here, Newsies, Addams Family, Hello My Baby, Red Clay. TV: Regis and Kelly, and Wendy Williams with American Idol Finalists. Education: BA in Music Composition with distinction from St. Olaf College.
Book & Lyrics, Dani Girl
Christopher Dimond and Michael Kooman received the 2013 Fred Ebb Award, a 2010 Jonathan Larson Grant and are the first recipients of the Lorenz Hart Award. Between them, they have received the Burton Lane Award, the Harold Adamson Award, the KC/ACTF Musical Theatre Award, a NYFA Fellowship, and numerous ASCAP Plus awards. Their musicals include Dani Girl(NAMT Fest ’12, licensed by Samuel French), Judge Jackie Justice (Pittsburgh CLO), Orphie & the Book of Heroes (The Kennedy Center), Golden Gate(Williamstown Theatre Festival), Homemade Fusion (London’s Ambassadors Theater, Edinburgh Fringe Festival) and Junior Claus (licensed by Dramatic Publishing).They are currently working on several new projects, including a commission from the Canadian Musical Theatre Project. Michael and Chris are members of the Dramatists Guild and ASCAP, and are proud alumni of Carnegie Mellon University. They were Dramatists Guild Fellows, received a fellowship at the O’Neill National Music Theater Conference, and attended the Johnny Mercer Songwriting workshop. In addition, they are the founders of The ASCAP Musical Theatre Songwriting Workshop, a program dedicated to training young songwriters. Their debut album, OUT OF OUR HEADS, featuring an all-star lineup of Broadway performers, is now available on iTunes.
Lyrics & Music, Bernice Bobs Her Hair
Musicals include Ordinary Days (NAMT Fest ’08, Roundabout, London’s West End, and more), Cloudlands (South Coast Repertory), The Boy Detective Fails(Signature Theatre) and Bernice Bobs Her Hair (NAMT Fest ’11).His songs have been performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and more, by such luminaries as Audra McDonald and Kelli O’Hara. Honors include the Kleban, Ebb, and Loewe Awards, Second Stage Theatre’s Rosen Award, ASCAP’s Harold Adamson Award, the MAC John Wallowitch Award, and commissions from Roundabout, Playwrights Horizons, SCR, Signature, and Broadway Across America. Adam is proud to be making his third appearance in the NAMT Festival.
Book & Lyrics & Music, Bloodsong Of Love
Joe Iconis has been nominated for two Drama Desk Awards, a Lucille Lortel Award, and is the proud recipient of an Ed Kleban Award and a Jonathan Larson Award. He is the author of Bloodsong of Love, The Black Suits, ReWrite, The Plant That Ate Dirty Socks and We The People. His concert act, The Rock and Roll Jamboree, frequently plays The Laurie Beechman Theater and Joe’s Pub and the Original Cast Recording of Things To Ruin, Joe’s theatrical rock concert, is available on Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight records. Joe is greatly inspired by Robert Altman, Dolly Parton, The Rolling Stones, whiskey, The Muppets, and The Family of artists he frequently surrounds himself with. www.MrJoeIconis.com
Book & Lyrics, Watt?!?
David Javerbaum has won 11 Emmys for his work as head writer and executive producer of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. He was a principal author of its best-sellers America (The Book) and Earth (The Book). He is also a Kleban Award-winning lyricist whose work includes 2008’s Cry-Baby, for which he was Tony-nominated; eight original Christmas songs for the 2008 television special, A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All! for which he won a Grammy; and “Broadway: It’s Not Just for Gays Anymore!”, the opening number to the 2011 Tonys. He also collaborated with God on His upcoming memoir, The Last Testament.
Book & Lyrics, Bernice Bobs Her Hair
Julia Jordan musical books include Sarah Plain and Tall (NAMT Festival 2003)and The Mice, both written with Larry O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin. Upcoming musicals: Storyville and Murder Ballad. . Plays include Smoking Lesson, Tatjana in Color, St. Scarlet, Boy, Dark Yellow, and Jones. Currently in development, the film Tell Me Something I Don’t Know with Glen Luchford slated to direct. Kleban Award, Francesca Primus Prize, Lucille Lortel Playwriting Fellowship, Manhattan Theater Club Fellowship, Jonathan Larson Award, Heideman Award and LeComte Nouy Award. She is one of the founders of The Lilly Awards and sits on the Council of the Dramatists Guild.
Music, Dani Girl
Michael Kooman (music) and Christopher Dimond (book & lyrics) received the 2013 Fred Ebb Award, a 2010 Jonathan Larson Grant and are the first recipients of the Lorenz Hart Award. Between them, they have received the Burton Lane Award, the Harold Adamson Award, the KC/ACTF Musical Theatre Award, a NYFA Fellowship, and numerous ASCAP Plus awards. Their musicals include Dani Girl(NAMT Fest ’12, licensed by Samuel French), Judge Jackie Justice (Pittsburgh CLO), Orphie & the Book of Heroes (The Kennedy Center), Golden Gate(Williamstown Theatre Festival), Homemade Fusion (London’s Ambassadors Theater, Edinburgh Fringe Festival) and Junior Claus (licensed by Dramatic Publishing).They are currently working on several new projects, including a commission from the Canadian Musical Theatre Project. Michael and Chris are members of the Dramatists Guild and ASCAP, and are proud alumni of Carnegie Mellon University. They were Dramatists Guild Fellows, received a fellowship at the O’Neill National Music Theater Conference, and attended the Johnny Mercer Songwriting workshop. In addition, they are the founders of The ASCAP Musical Theatre Songwriting Workshop, a program dedicated to training young songwriters. Their debut album, OUT OF OUR HEADS, featuring an all-star lineup of Broadway performers, is now available on iTunes.
Book & Lyrics, Pregnancy Pact
Gordon Leary is a Brooklyn-based bookwriter and lyricist. With Julia Meinwald, musicals include Pregnancy Pact (2012 Weston Playhouse, 2011 NAMT Festival, 2011 YIMT), Disappeared (2009 Lincoln Center Directors Lab, 2008 Prospect Theater Dark Nights), Something Blue (2014 NYTB), and REB + VoDKa + ME (2015 Civilians’ FINDINGS Series). Other musicals include Cheer Wars (2009 Richard Rodgers Award) and Across the River (2013 Seoul Musical Festival, 2009 Daegu International Musical Festival). 2009-10 Dramatists Guild Fellow, 2013-14 Uncharted (Ars Nova), 2015-16 R&D Group (The Civilians), 2016 Playground Playgroup (Fresh Ground Pepper). BA: Vassar. MFA: NYU Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. www.omfgordon.com
Book & Lyrics, Notes To Marianne
Dan Lipton and David Rossmer are longtime collaborators who have created several original musicals, jointly writing all music, book and lyrics. Their musical comedy The Blonde Streak was commissioned by Broadway Across America and developed at the Orchard Project. Their form-bending musical satire JOE! (NAMT Festival 2000) was seen at the Kennedy Center’s Theater Lab and Chicago’s Equity Library Theatre. JOE! is currently in development as a 3-D movie musical. Rossmer & Lipton are currently working for Araca Group on adapting a bestselling memoir, with playwright Jessica Provenz. Their sketch comedy musical Rated P… for Parenthood, written with Sandy Rustin, premiered at SOPAC in NJ and is optioned for production off-Broadway. Other projects include: a Depression-era book musical with television writer Janis Hirsch, a futuristic concept musical with Kirsten Guenther, and a biographical show about B-movie king Roger Corman with Wayne Rawley. Lipton & Rossmer have written special material for singers including Kelli O’Hara (“Always” album, Lincoln Center, Town Hall) and Sutton Foster (Joe’s Pub). And the duo co-created, with Steve Rosen and Sarah Saltzberg, the comedy improv variety show Don’t Quit Your Night Job, which began at Joe’s Pub and ran off-Broadway.
Music, Pregnancy Pact
Julia Meinwald‘s other musicals with Gordon Leary include Pregnancy Pact (2012 premiere production at the Weston Playhouse, 2011 NAMT Festival and Yale Institute for Musical Theatre selection), REB + VoDKa + ME (Civilians R&D Group 2015-2016), Galaxy Comics (2014 United Airlines in-flight programming), and Disappeared (2009 Lincoln Center Directors Lab). Julia was a participant in the New Dramatists Composer Librettist Development Program, the Dramatists Guild fellowship, American Lyric Theatre residency, Ars Nova’s Uncharted group, the Civilian’s R&D Group, and Fresh Ground Pepper’s Playground Playgroup. She holds a BA in Music from Yale and an MFA from NYU’s GMTWP. www.juliameinwald.com.
Brendan Milburn writes songs for theatre and film (mostly with wife Valerie Vigoda), produces records, and is a stay-at-home dad when he’s not off rewriting the opening number at some regional theatre somewhere. Musicals: Striking 12(NAMT Fest ’04, Off Broadway & regional), Sleeping Beauty Wakes (NAMT Fest ’12, CTG, McCarter, La Jolla), Wheelhouse (TheatreWorks), Toy Story: The Musical (Disney), Fantasy Faire (Disneyland), Long Story Short (regional),Midsummer Night (in development), Ernest Shackleton Loves Me (Balagan/Seattle Rep/ACT), WATT?!? (NAMT Fest ’11, Trinity Rep, Village Theatre), The Behavior of Broadus (CTG, Sacred Fools). Film: four movies about Tinker Bell (Disney). Proudest production: nine-year old son, Mose.
Book & Lyrics & Music, Golden Boy Of The Blue Ridge
Peter Mills received the 2010 Kleban Prize for Lyrics, the 2007 Fred Ebb Award, the 2003 Richard Rodgers New Horizons Award, and a 2002 Jonathan Larson grant. Since 2000, Peter has written 11 new musicals. As composer/lyricist, his shows include The Pursuit Of Persephone (2006 Drama Desk nominations: Best Music, Best Orchestrations), Illyria, The Flood, and The Taxi Cabaret. Peter wrote lyrics for Iron Curtain (NAMT Festival 2009), with composer Stephen Weiner and bookwriter Susan DiLallo. He has an MFA. in Musical Theater Writing from NYU. Peter is a founding member of Prospect Theater Company. www.pcmills.com.
Book, The Dogs Of Pripyat
Leah Napolin made her Broadway playwrighting debut in 1975 with Yentl, produced by Cheryl Crawford and the Chelsea Theatre Center. In 2003, Yentl returned to New York for a successful run at the Folksbiene Yiddish Theater. In 1979, Ms. Napolin completed her second play Lost Island, about monks and nuns in the eleventh century, followed by Trash and Treasures (1981); Aristophanes’ Retreat (1985); Split at the Root, a Novel in Three Acts (2010); and Twister (2011). She is a member of P.E.N. and the Dramatists Guild, and the winner of the John Gassner Memorial Playwriting Award for The Dogs of Pripyat (2004).
Cara Reichel is a writer and director, and serves as the Producing Artistic Director of the NYC-based non-profit Prospect Theater Company. Over the past decade, she has co-created 11 new musicals with writer Peter Mills. Recent Prospect productions include: Once Upon a Time in New Jersey, Golden Boy of the Blue Ridge, Illyria, and Honor. She also directed Iron Curtain at the 2009 NAMT Festival of New Musicals and the O’Neill Theatre Center (2008), and Othello for Oberon Theatre Ensemble (2010). Education: Princeton University, and the MFA. Program at Brooklyn College. Cara is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, and the League of Professional Theatre Women. www.carareichel.com
Book & Lyrics & Music, Notes To Marianne