I was so honored to receive a commission for a wind-band piece to be premiered at Hastings High School, funded by a Cultural Arts Grant. My dear friend, the insanely multi-talented Eric Day, conducts the group, and it was a pleasure writing a piece for his ensemble and making improvements to the piece thanks to their input. Then on May 21 I got to hear it performed in a lovely outdoor concert!
The radio show In Between the Lines "introduces listeners to great contemporary musical theatre songs and writers who wrote them". I was excited to be featured on an episode comprised entirely of musical settings of Edna St Vincent Millay poems (NYU's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program application, anyone?) You can hear the episode here!
Back in April, Gordon and I started scheming about how we could go about our business of making musical theatre while staying safely separate. We chose to focus on our show REB+VoDKa+ME, a piece inspired by a real-life community seeking connection on the internet. We wanted to make something that felt collaborative, un-constrained, and true to the spirit of the show. Six months later, I'm so excited to share these three videos, conceived, rehearsed, recorded, mixed, edited, and now viewed entirely remotely: https://www.rebvodka.me/
Big thanks to the Dramatist Guild Foundation and Iris Dart, Janis Purins of the Thom Thomas Award Committee, whose support made this project possible, and to the inspiring humans we worked with, who make the difficult look easy:
director annie tippe
video editor ryan mazer
audio engineer andrew zinsmeister
violin saki uetsuhara
cello brian sanders
performers ally bonino, sam heldt, minji kim, adam lawrence, david merino, elexis morton, jeanna phillips, emily walton, tatiana wechsler
Gordon and I recently posted an interview on 10glo in which we talk about writing unlikeable characters, the inspiration behind some of our work, and collaborating during a pandemic. You can also find some of our favorite videos on our 10glo artists page!
In this brave new world of remote collaboration, Gordon and I are thrilled that the intrepid musical theatre students at Penn State are workshop-ing REB+VoDKa+ME as part of their fall curriculum, under the fearless leadership of director John Simpkins and music director Jennifer Peacock. You haven't really lived until you've watched a cast rehearse 7-part harmony in 3 distinct locations.
I was going a bit stir crazy, so I put together some remote demo recordings for Elevator Heart!
Putting everything together one remote piece at a time was challenging, but luckily the preternaturally insightful Andy Zinsmeister made everything sounds as if it Wasn't recorded in 11 different closets using 11 different microphones.
Audio Mixer, and Guitar, and Bass on two songs, and general genius: Andy Zinsmeister
Piano: Katya Stanislavskaya
Bass (on the other 4 songs): Eric Day
Drum Arrangements: Jeremy Yaddaw
Cello: Brian Sanders
After spending no less than [redacted] number of hours agonizing over the perfect set of videos to share, Gordon and I are proud to unveil our new Broadway On Demand channel. This is a very cool website, collecting content from a slew of exciting writing teams (not that I'm biased), and we're thrilled to be a part of it!
Gordon and I were excited to kick of the Weston Playhouse Songs for Today series with our new song, I Remember Summer. You can find our "liner notes" for the song here. Coming up later in the series are Kirsten Childs, Joe Iconis, Tidtaya Sinutoke & Isabella Dawis, Jenny Giering & Sean Barry, Adam Gwon, and Adam Guettel -- mighty fine company to be in! We feel lucky to count The Weston Playhouse as an artistic home, and can't wait to get back there again soon!
You'd best believe that I put on a sparkly dress and opened a bottle of champagne just to celebratorially drink one glass while watching the Dramatists Guild Annual Awards Night, in collaboration with the Lilly Awards and the Dramatists Guild Foundation. It was an honor to be up there amidst this year's inspiring slate of winners.
Time Does Not Bring Relief, my 2005 setting of an Edna St Vincent Millay poem (part of my grad school application!) was included as part of Project 2020, a conference showcasing work by under-represented groups. I had the pleasure of being on a Q&A panel for the event as well, alongside some extremely rad composers. Thanks to Jennifer Sgroe for including me!