Back to the 29th Annual Festival of New Musicals

The Passage

2017 Festival

Shelley Butler

Music Director
Mark Hartman

Farah Alvin, Cat Brindisi, Brian D. Coats, CJ Eldred, Daniel Marcus, John Rubinstein, Isabella Russo, Jennifer Sanchez and Ian Saraceni

Contact for Rights

David Darrow,, 973.865.5261,

Number of Acts: 1
Number of Principals (Male): 2
Number of Principals (Female): 2
Preferred Ensemble Size: 4
Total Cast Size: 8
Orchestra Breakdown:

Piano, Guitar, Cello, Bass, and Percussion

Casting Notes:

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.

Genre & Style:

Search Set & Costume Registry


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.

Festival Successes

August 2018 reading at Village Theatre’s (WA) Festival of New Musicals and a subsequent February 2019 developmental production as a part of their Beta Series. Apples and Oranges Theatre Accelerator (2020)

5 Things You Should Know

  1. The Passageis autobiographical. It is based on the author’s experience of a moment of deep crisis for his family. The house in which the musical takes place functions almost like 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 world premiere 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.