Back to the 29th Annual Festival of New Musicals

The Passage

2017 Festival

Number of Acts: 1
Number of Principals (Male): 2
Number of Principals (Female): 2
Number of Chorus (Male): 2
Number of Chorus (Female): 2
Orchestra Breakdown:

Piano, Guitar, Cello, Bass, and Percussion

Casting Needs:

The piece requires two children – Albert and Cassie. Both are in sixth grade. In the first production, the ensemble actor who played Cassie’s Mom also played Knight #1.

Synopsis

Albert, a sixth grader, has a monster living in his basement. When it captures his father, he enlists his brave new friend, Cassie, and together they embark on an epic journey to save his Dad and his family. The Passage is a coming-of-age story about two imaginative children confronting a reality stranger than anything they could imagine.

The unfolding of this mystery engulfed us even once we’d thought we’d figured it out. We found this a beautiful, compelling and poignant coming-of- age story with extremely well-drawn characters. Charming at first, it evolves quickly into a meditation on the circle of life.

- Festival Committee

Development History

The Passage was originally developed and produced by 7th House Theater in 2016. It received an internal developmental workshop with 7th House and a full production in the Dowling Studio at the Guthrie.

5 Things You Should Know

  1. The Passageis autobiographical. It is based on the author’s experience living in a house with a sick family member. The house in The Passage functions almost as another character.
  2. For a musical, it is small and very intimate. There are scenes that take place in tiny areas—a tent, a closet, a bathroom—but the world should feel enormous to Albert, and his journey into the basement should feel epic.
  3. The main characters don’t sing. There is a chorus of four actors who play various parts of the world—a dog, a box of memories, a pile of coats—and they supply the music of the world. The chorus in many ways represents the inner life of the characters.
  4. Although the two leads, Albert and Cassie, are children, The Passage is not a piece of children’s theater.
  5. This piece had its first workshop and production at The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, where it was developed and produced by 7th House Theater. I am looking for partners to help with the next stages—further development and a larger production.
Excerpts