This week I am having the most rapturous time at a writers' retreat with SPACE on Ryder Farm. Gordon and I are here through Page 73, and we've had the most wonderful week working on our various shows and communing with the sheep, horses, rabbits, and impressively sized bugs. Each day all the artists in residence gather for three amazing farm-to-table meals prepared by a resident chef, and this combination of structure/community and freedom to work has made this one of my most pleasant and productive writing experiences.
We have a first full draft of The Magnificent Seven, so Gordon and I gathered together some of our very favorite collaborators to read and sing through the whole thing. Thanks to Shaleah Adkisson, Renee Albulario, Delaney Amatrudo, Ian Axness, Ally Bonino, David Friedlander, Holly Gould, Brandon Michael Lowden, Ellen Macy, Lynne Marie Rosenberg, Keith Rubin, and Hana Slevin for a great read and a great discussion.
Fun news: the University of San Francisco will be producing Elevator Heart as their fall mainstage production! More info and tickets here.
So fun to be named an "other name to investigate" in the last paragraph of Playbill's Writers You Should Know Mixtape.
My heart soared like so many glass elevators in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory when Sara, Amy, and I learned that THML Thearte Company will be producing Elevator Heart as part of their upcoming season! The show will run at The Secret Theatre in Long Island City in the spring of 2019. Here's the Broadway World article outlining the rest of their great lineup. Stay tuned for more updates!
Very excited that the wonderful Allie Sandler will be singing Cheerleader (lyrics by Sara Cooper, music by me) from Elevator Heart at Prospect Theatre Company's Rave Revue concert on Friday 7/27! Here's the nifty Broadway World article, and you can get tickets here!
A few more nice pull quotes from reviews of The Loneliest Girl in the World's world premiere at Diversionary Theatre!
"Ingenious...Absorbing and smartly conceived new musical...One remarkable -- and admirable -- aspect of Loneliest Girl...is the generosity of spirit that writer-lyricist Gordon Leary and composer Julia Meinwald extend to their subject. Meinwald's score hooks a playgoer with all kinds of strong melodic lines, and meshes gracefully with...well-turned Leary lyrics."
-James Hebert, San Diego Union-Tribune
"Witty and impassioned...The melodic score is moving without becoming rhapsodic, and its clever turns spoof the pop and political landscape of the '50s and '70s."
-David L. Coddon, San Diego City Beat
"A groundbreaking, spectacular piece of theater."
-Albert H. Fulcher, Gay San Diego
"A creative and moving work...highlights the intersections of those on the opposite sides of political debate"
-Yuko Kurahashi, San Diego Free Press
The lovely Shoshana Greenberg is launching her podcast, Scene to Song, and I had the good fortune to be her first guest! We had a super fun conversation about comedy in musical theatre, among other things -- check out the episode here!
This week I traveled to St. Louis for the Opera America conference. (All of the 2018 Discovery Grant recipients were invited to attend.) It was awesome and mind-opening to be in the company of so many smart, passionate people thinking about the future of opera, and humbling to be welcomed into their community.