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Overview

October 17 - 18

New World Stages 340 W 50th Street, New York, NY

The 25th Annual Festival of New Musicals was held in New York City on Thursday, October 17 and Friday, October 18, 2013, introducing the NAMT membership to a wide variety of new musicals, ranging from romantic comedies to pieces about today’s world, from a darkly comic thriller to a delightful fairy tale, from fantastical superheroes to real people pulled from the pages of history.

Musicals

Analog And Vinyl

Cast
Bryan Fenkart, Harriet Harris and Sarah Stiles

Director
Michael Berresse

Music Director
Jodie Moore

Ideal Cast Size: 4
Ideal Band Size: 5
Style: Quirky Romantic Comedy

Synopsis

Harrison is obsessed with LPs from the sixties and the superior quality of analog. Rodeo Girl, a quirky Silver Lake hipster, is obsessed with Harrison but he barely notices. With his vintage record store about to go under, Harrison and Rodeo Girl are visited by a mysterious customer who makes them a devilish offer they can’t refuse.

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The Astonishing Return Of...the Protagonists!

Director
Christopher Gattelli

Cast
Carlos Encinias, Sutton Foster, Todd Johnson, Andy Karl, Marc Kudisch, Alice Lee, Kara Lindsay, Tyler Maynard, Christopher Sieber, Douglas Sills, Kevin Smith Kirkwood and Aurelia Williams

Ideal Cast Size: 17+
Ideal Band Size: tbd
Style: Action Comedy

Synopsis

The Protagonists was once a mighty group of superheroes battling the forces of evil. Twenty years later, they find themselves battling the forces of thinning hair and menopause. But when an old nemesis re-emerges with a sinister plan, can the former superfriends pull it together to save the world again?

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The Boy Who Danced On Air

Music Director
Matt Castle

Cast
Fajer Al-Kaisi, Giuseppe Bausilio, Anthony Medina, Jonathan Raviv and Sorab Wadia

Director
Saheem Ali

Cast Size: 5
Ideal Band Size: 3-5

Synopsis

The Boy Who Danced on Air focuses on a tradition in Afghanistan called Bacha Bazi: wealthy men take in poorer boys and train them to dance. The boys perform at parties and are often sexually abused. This is the story of what happens when two of those boys fall in love.

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Come From Away

Director
Brian Hill

Music Director
Dan Pardo

Cast
Becca Ayers, Klea Blackhurst, Allison Case, Nick Choksi, Stephanie D'Abruzzo, Colin Hanlon, Ruthie Ann Miles, Spencer Moses, Jason Michael Snow, Barbara Walsh, Jason "Sweet Tooth" Williams and Lenny Wolpe

Ideal Cast Size: 10 to 14
Ideal Band Size: 4 to 7

Synopsis

Come From Away tells the true story of when seven thousand people landed on the doorstep of Gander, Newfoundland… and the people of Gander “put the kettle on.” A rocking musical about when 38 planes from around the world were diverted to a small, Canadian community on September 11, 2001—doubling its population in an instant. While the world witnessed the worst acts of humankind, the stranded passengers had their faith in humanity restored by the spirited people who comforted those who had come from away.

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Eastland

Director
Amanda Dehnert

Cast
Andi Alhadeff, Will Connolly, Derek Hasenstab, Erik Hellman, Katrina Lenk, Lauren Marcus, William Parry, Randy Redd, William Ryall and Emily Walton

Music Director
Rick Fox

Cast Size: 12
Ideal Band Size: 6 to 8
Style: Folk Operetta

Synopsis

Early morning, July 24, 1915: moored on the Chicago River, the S. S. Eastland overflows with passengers ready for their company picnic. The boat leans to port – and keeps leaning, until it tips completely over. By day’s end, hundreds will perish, whole families will vanish and unexpected heroes will emerge in this American folk musical.

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My Heart Is The Drum

Cast
Natalie Venetia Belcon, Krystal Joy Brown, Rebecca Covington, Mel Johnson, Crystal Joy, Nicole Lewis, Jarran Muse, John Eric Parker, Saycon Sengbloh, Danielle Thomas, Donald Webber and Tommar Wilson

Director
Schele Williams

Ideal Cast Size: 12-16+
Ideal Band Size: 3-12
Style: Contemporary Coming-of-Age Drama

Synopsis

When Efua Kuti is pulled from school and forced to marry, she flees her village in Ghana to pursue her dream: a college education. Guided by the spirit of her grandmother, she confronts life-threatening dangers, and in doing so, discovers her true strength. A joyous tale of modern Africa with driving rhythms and rich vocal harmonies, this big, coming-of-age musical celebrates the promise within us all.

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The Sandman

Director
Sam Buntrock

Cast
Heidi Blickenstaff, Joshua Colley, Robert Creighton, Kelly McCormick, Bailey Ryon, Douglas Sills and Mavis Simpson-Ernst

Music Director
Valerie Gebert

Ideal Cast Size: 8 people
Ideal Band Size: 2 to 9
Style: Dark comedy thriller

Synopsis

Germany, 1838. What if Clara’s nutcracker had been built by a clockmaker whose children were held hostage by the Sandman? What if the clockmaker’s nanny had invited the Sandman in? What if the Sandman steals children’s eyes at night? Too ghastly to contemplate. Who dares put such horrors in a musical?

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Single Girls Guide

Director
Kevin Moriarty

Cast
Farah Alvin, Sydney Harcourt, Adam Heller, Gwen Hollander, Amber Iman, Julia Mattison, Michael McCorry Rose, Susan Mosher, Jenny Powers, Steve Rosen, Graham Rowat and Clarke Thorell

Cast Size: 9+ people
Ideal Band Size: 3 (piano, bass, drums)
Style: Comedy

Synopsis

Jane Austen meets Helen Gurley Brown in the stylish world of 1964 Manhattan. Filled with the buoyant sounds and bright spirit of the mid-1960s, The Single Girls Guide is a fizzy riff on Emma and Sex and The Single Girlthat echoes the questions we continue to ask about marriage, sex and being single.

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The Three Little Pigs

Director
Victoria Bussert

Music Director
Ryan Garrett

Cast
Ann Harada, David Larsen, Ciara Renee, George Salazar and Christopher Sieber

Cast Size: 5 people
Band Size: 1 to 6
Style:
Younger Audience

Synopsis

Take three little superstar Piglets, their devoted single-parent Mom, a misunderstood Big Bad Wolf and the award-winning tuneful wit of Stiles and Drewe and you’ve got the perfect “Great Big Little Broadway Show” for audiences of three years old and up. This very curly musical tail will huff, puff and blow you away!

More about The Three Little Pigs

Songwriters Showcase

CHASING THE SONG by Joe DiPietro & David Bryan
THE UNTITLED HUNTER S. THOMPSON PROJECT by Joe Iconis
LIFE IS A PARTY by Nell Benjamin & Laurence O’Keefe
BREAD & ROSES by Jill Abromovitz & Brad Alexander
MISS PETTIGREW LIVES FOR A DAY by Lisa Lambert & Greg Morrison
UNTITLED PROJECT by Sam Willmott
UNTITLED PROJECT by Chad Begeulin & Matthew Sklar
JAWBREAKER by Jordan Mann & Jeff Thomson

Writers & Artists

Kevin Del Aguila

Book, The Astonishing Return Of...the Protagonists!

Kevin Del Aguila is the book writer of the hit Off Broadway musical Altar Boyz (NY Outer Critics Circle Award, Lortel and Drama Desk nominations). Other works include his stage adaptations of the DreamWorks film Madagascar (Radio City Music Hall), Skippyjon Jones (Lortel nomination) and Click Clack Moo (Lortel and Drama Desk nominations). He received the Heideman Award for his play The Greekest of Tragedies (Actors Theatre of Louisville) and took top prize at the FringeNYC with his comedy 6 Story Building. Theatergoers may know him as “Smee” from the Broadway and Off Broadway companies of Peter and the Starcatcher. www.delaguila.info

Anthony Drewe

Book, The Three Little Pigs

With composer George Stiles, Anthony has written book and lyrics for the multi award-winning Honk! (NAMT Fest ’99), Just So, Soho Cinders and Goldilocks and The Three Bears as well as writing lyrics for Betty Blue Eyes, Peter Pan – A Musical Adventure and the new songs for the international smash hit Mary Poppins. He is currently working on the lyrics for three new shows: Soapdish, The Wind in the Willows and Travels With My Aunt. His other musicals are: The Card (with composer Tony Hatch) and A Twist of Fate (with composer Dick Lee). www.StilesandDrewe.com

Paul Gordon

Book, Analog And Vinyl

Paul Gordon co-wrote the Broadway musical Jane Eyre, nominated for five Tony Awards including Best Musical and Best Score. He won a 2009 Ovation award for his score to Daddy Long Legs and won the 2007 Bay Area Critics Circle Award for his book to the musical Emma (NAMT Fest ’06) which has played all across the country. Daddy Long Legs, written with John Caird, has had productions all over the world including London and Tokyo. Being Earnest, written with Jay Gruska, premiered at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley this April. Little Miss Scrooge, written with John Caird and Sam Caird, will premiere at the Rubicon Theatre in Ventura this Christmas. paulgordonmusic.com

Gordon Greenberg

Book, Single Girls Guide

Directing/Writing includes: Working (Drama Desk Award, 59 E 59, Old Globe, Broadway in Chicago, Asolo), Jacques Brel… (Zipper Theatre, Drama Desk, Drama League, Outer Critics Award nominations), Band Geeks! (co-writer, Goodspeed, Human Race Theatre Co., NAMT Fest ‘09), Pirates! (Huntington, Paper Mill, Goodspeed, MUNY), The Baker’s Wife (Goodspeed, Paper Mill), Disney’s Believe (Disney Creative Entertainment), Happy Days (First National Tour). Current projects include: Scramble Band! (co-writer, Disney Channel), Rags (Roundabout), Guys & Dolls (Chichester Theatre Festival UK 2014), Johnny Baseball (Williamstown) and developing new musicals for Universal Pictures and the pop group Fun. Education: Stanford University, NYU Film School, Lincoln Center Directors Lab. www.gordongreenberg.com

David Hein

Book, Come From Away

David Hein is an award-winning, Canadian singer/songwriter who has played festivals across North America and released four CD’s. With Irene Sankoff, he co-wrote and starred in My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding (based on his mother’s true story and the same-sex marriage movement) winning more awards than any other show at NYMF 2010, 3 SALT awards and a Bryden “Ones-to-Watch” award, among others. Proud ASCAP members, they were featured in the ASCAP LA musical theatre showcase last year. www.sankoffandhein.com or Twitter @sankoffandhein

Stacey Luftig

Lyrics, My Heart Is The Drum

Stacey Luftig is a lyricist, librettist, and playwright. Her lyrics were featured Off Broadway and on tour in That’s Life (Outer Critics Circle nomination). She wrote book/lyrics for Understood Betsy (Jackie White Memorial National Children’s Playwriting Award, National Children’s Theatre Festival Award). Story of an Hour, her operetta, premiered with Portland Chamber Orchestra, and her play Jinxed, an O’Neill NPC Finalist, won first place and audience favorite at Dayton Playhouse FutureFest. Stacey has also written animated television episodes for Pinky Dinky Doo, produced by the Sesame Workshop. A five-time fellow of the VCCA, she is a member of the BMI Librettists Workshop, ASCAP and the Dramatists Guild. www.staceyluftig.com

Tommy Newman

Lyrics, Single Girls Guide

Band Geeks! (Goodspeed Musicals, Human Race Theatre Co., NAMT Fest ‘09), Tinyard Hill (Theatreworks Silicon Valley, Red Mountain Theatre, Human Race Theatre, Goodspeed, NAMT Fest ‘07). Off Broadway: We the People: America Rocks (Theatreworks, USA, Lortel Nomination 2010), The Yellow Brick Road (TheatreworksUSA) and 29 (NYU with Gaby Alter). In development: The Teacher from the Black Lagoon and Other Stories (TheatreworksUSA), The Odyssey Suite, ELEkTRA, The House of the Rising Sun. Tommy teaches in the Department of Theatre and Dance at Troy University. BS in Music Education, Theatre and Business, Troy University. MFA, Musical Theatre Writing, NYU Tisch. www.tommynewman.com

Richard Oberacker

Book, The Sandman

Richard Oberacker is currently the conductor of Cirque Du Soleil’s Ka in Las Vegas. His musicals as composer and co-author include The Gospel According to Fishman (Signature Theatre), Dracula (Cincinnati Conservatory), In That Valley (NAMT Fest ‘99), Journey to the West (NYMF), Ace (NAMT Fest ‘05, The Old Globe, Cincinnati Playhouse, Repertory Theater of St. Louis, Signature Theatre) and The Parenting Project (Cincinnati Fringe Festival, Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati). Theater scores include A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Peter Pan and The Trojan Women, as well as new works for the Nevada Ballet Theatre.

Phillip Palmer

Conceived, My Heart Is The Drum

Theatre: The Weatherman (Clear Space Productions, Network One-Act Festival). Studies: Eastman School of Music (B.M.), traditional drumming and choral music in Ghana and South Africa. Member: Advanced Class, BMI Musical Theatre Workshop. Phillip is also a Foreign Service Officer with the Agency for International Development (USAID), where he implements programs to create economic opportunities in the world’s poorest countries. He has lived and worked in Haiti and Southern Africa.

Andre Pluess

Music, Eastland

Based in Chicago, Pluess and Sussman have been collaborating as sound designers/composers for over 15 years. Projects include productions for Lookingglass Theatre and Tony Award-winning director Mary Zimmerman for whom they designed the Broadway/regional/international productions of Metamorphoses, as well as her adaptation of the Chinese folk-tale The White Snake. Additional Broadway credits include sound designs for I Am My Own Wife and 33 Variations (with director Moises Kaufman), as well as the score for the Lincoln Center Theater production of The Clean House. Their musical Winesburg, Ohio (recipient of both Joseph Jefferson and Barrymore awards for outstanding musical) was a selection for the NAMT Festival in 2004, and has been produced at Steppenwolf/About Face, the Arden Theatre and Kansas City Repertory Theatre. Currently, they are composing the scores for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s productions of A Streetcar Named Desire and The Tempest, as well as designing sound for The Jungle Book for the Goodman Theatre in Chicago. They have received numerous awards for composition and sound design including eleven Joseph Jefferson Awards, an Ovation Award, a Barrymore Award, Lortel/Drama Desk Nominations and a Drama Critics Circle Award.

Jennie Redling

Book, My Heart Is The Drum

Jennie Redling is a playwright and librettist. Off Broadway: Miscast (Soho Rep, EST, NY Fringe Festival), Among Women (Mint Theater), Gone Astray (EST), The Harvest (Mint Theater). Regional/Play readings/Awards: Gone Astray (Stanley Drama Award, Penguin Rep, Urban Stages, Hudson Stage Co.), Desperate Territory (The Barrow Group), Ride the Dark Cars (NJ Rep), A Rape in Glorious (Arlene R. and William P. Lewis Playwriting Award for Women, O’Neill NPC Finalist twice, Arts & Letters Prize for Drama Finalist). Member: Dramatists Guild, BMI Librettists Workshop. www.jennieredling.com

Tim Rosser

Music, The Boy Who Danced On Air

Tim Rosser is a composer and music director. Credits: MD for BC/EFA’s Broadway Backwards (2013) at the Palace Theatre; keyboards for The Addams Family on Broadway and Carrie; MD for Making Books Sing and The Water Coolers. Composing (book and lyrics by Charlie Sohne): The Profit of Creation (Yale Institute for Music Theater, Johnny Mercer Songwriters Workshop) and Political Speeches (Culture Project’s IMPACT). Concerts: a sold-out show at 54 Below, Cutting Edge Composers IV at Joe’s Pub and more. Alumnus of Oberlin Conservatory, advanced class of the BMI Workshop.

Irene Sankoff

Book, Come From Away

Her first musical, My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding (co-written and performed with David Hein) won Outstanding New Musical and Best Book (NYMF ’10) and was nominated for a Canadian Comedy Award. Their newest show, Mitzvah (about a family dealing with the pressures of having a son with autism as he prepares for his Bar Mitzvah) was workshopped at the Finger Lakes Musical Theatre Festival. Irene holds an Acting MFA (New School for Drama) and a Writing/Psychology degree (York University). www.sankoffandhein.com or Twitter @sankoffandhein

Michael Shaieb

Music, The Astonishing Return Of...the Protagonists!

Stage: Out of My Range (and Other Age-Related Performance Issues); Alexander’s House (winner 2013 Washington Area Music Award: Best Classical Recording); Through a Glass, Darkly; Go-Go Beach (dir. John Simpkins, NYMF 2006). Film: Brief Reunion (dir. John Daschbach); Last Days of Left Eye (VH1 Rock Docs); Waking Dreams (starring Ben Shenkman). Choral: Kushner Trilogy, commissioned by Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus for the Guthrie Theater 2009 Tony Kushner Festival. Upcoming films: Decay (dir. Joseph Wartnerchaney, starring Rob Zabrecky, Jackie Hoffman, Lisa Howard); co-producing a documentary about NYC Youth Pride Chorus. MFA from NYU’s Tisch Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. fatlabmusic.com

Charlie Sohne

Book, The Boy Who Danced On Air

With composer Tim Rosser: The Profit of Creation (Yale Institute for Music Theater, Johnny Mercer Songwriters Workshop) and Political Speeches (NYTB, Culture Project’s IMPACT). Lyricist: Tina Girlstar (book – Anton Dudley, music – Brian Feinstein; NYSAF, Olympus Theatricals) and The Shadow Sparrow (book – Anton Dudley, music – Keith Gordon; The O’Neill NMTC). Concerts: 54 Below, Joe’s Pub and Second Stage, among others. Song with David Gaines named Top 25 in the Directory of Contemporary Musical Theater. Advanced class of the BMI Workshop, Dramatists Guild.

George Stiles

Music, The Three Little Pigs

New songs, dance and vocal arrangements for the world-wide smash-hit Mary Poppins. Also with Anthony Drewe: Betty Blue Eyes, Soho Cinders, Peter Pan – A Musical Adventure, Just So, Goldilocks and the The Three Bears and the Olivier Award-winning Honk! (NAMT Fest ’99) which has been seen by more than 6 million people in over 8,000 productions around the world in more than 20 languages. They are currently writing Soapdish for Broadway, Wind in the Willows with Julian Fellowes for the West End and Travels With My Aunt. Other work includes: The Three Musketeers (NAMT Fest ’99), Sam Mendes’ Twelfth Night and Uncle Vanya. www.StilesandDrewe.com

Ben Sussman

Music, Eastland

Based in Chicago, Pluess and Sussman have been collaborating as sound designers/composers for over 15 years. Projects include productions for Lookingglass Theatre and Tony Award-winning director Mary Zimmerman for whom they designed the Broadway/regional/international productions of Metamorphoses, as well as her adaptation of the Chinese folk-tale The White Snake. Additional Broadway credits include sound designs for I Am My Own Wife and 33 Variations (with director Moises Kaufman), as well as the score for the Lincoln Center Theater production of The Clean House. Their musical Winesburg, Ohio (recipient of both Joseph Jefferson and Barrymore awards for outstanding musical) was a selection for the NAMT Festival in 2004, and has been produced at Steppenwolf/About Face, the Arden Theatre and Kansas City Repertory Theatre. Currently, they are composing the scores for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s productions of A Streetcar Named Desire and The Tempest, as well as designing sound for The Jungle Book for the Goodman Theatre in Chicago. They have received numerous awards for composition and sound design including eleven Joseph Jefferson Awards, an Ovation Award, a Barrymore Award, Lortel/Drama Desk Nominations and a Drama Critics Circle Award.

Robert Taylor

Book, The Sandman

Robert Taylor is a graduate of Holland’s Royal Conservatory, Union College, the University of Bonn and Princeton. He has taught foreign languages and ornithology in New York, English and music in China, served as music critic for the Albany Times Union, founded and directed several non-profits, worked as a freelance musician and writer in Manhattan and a translator in Europe and Asia. As lyricist and co-author, his musicals include Ace (NAMT Fest ‘05, Cincinnati Playhouse, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, The Old Globe, Signature Theatre), Journey to the West (NYMF) and The Parenting Project (Cincinnati Fringe Festival, Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati).

Andrew White

Book, Eastland

Andrew White is a founding member of Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre Company, where he currently serves as Artistic Director. As a Lookingglass Ensemble Member and performer, he has participated in the workshop and development of more than 30 Lookingglass original adaptations and world premieres. He wrote and directed the company’s 1989 production of Of One Blood, about the 1964 murders of Schwerner, Chaney and Goodman in Mississippi. In 2004, he wrote and directed an adaptation of George Orwell’s 1984, which received a Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Adaptation. Eastland is his first musical.

Selection Process

Kevin Moriarty (Dallas Theatre Center, TX), Co-Chair
Kelley Kirkpatrick (Center Theatre Group, CA), Co-Chair
Joe Barros (New York Theatre Barn, NY)
Stephanie Cowan (Playing Pretend, NY)
Keith Cromwell (Red Mountain Theatre Company, AL)
Christine Denniston (Mercury Musical Developments, UK)
Elise Dewsberry (Academy for New Musical Theatre, CA)
Dana Harrel (La Jolla Playhouse, CA)
Eric Louie (The Old Globe, CA)
Søren Møller (Fredericia Theatre, Denmark)
Kent Nicholson (Playwrights Horizons, NY)
Marc Robin (Fulton Theatre, PA)
John Simpkins (TriArts Sharon Playhouse, CT)
Heather Schmucker (formerly of American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University, IL), Chair Emerita