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Our First Christmas from ALL THAT HE WAS - performed by the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles

June 9, 2010 - A 'Beautiful' Reading


 Last night's reading of 'Beautiful' was a big success.  We had a nearly-full house, and the audience was very responsive and warm.  The show is so hard to define, tonally, and it took a while for the audience to really know what they were in for.  For the record... that was intentional on our parts, and it seems to have really worked.  There was extended applause for several songs, including 'People Never Change', 'Out of My Mind', 'A Man and His Gun', and 'Nothing Matters.'  Our favorite number, 'Miss Alabama and Mr. Redemption', gets theatrically cut off before the end, so there's is no chance for applause, but the audience seemed very engaged, and there was much laughter at things which we knew were funny, but were worried the audience would miss.There is a long road ahead for us to make this show a success.  But I think we are off to a good start, and all three of us are eager to keep working.  Our next step is to complete the score and schedule another reading.  Keep an eye out for future performances!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         


'40 is the new 15' Daily Blog - Audition Day One


Sorry to get started so late on this daily blog!  June 5 was our first official day of auditions for the new incarnation of '40 is the new 15' at the NoHo Arts Center in North Hollywood, CA.  Producer Scott Guy, Director Michele Spears, Composer Cindy O'Connor and I saw some very talented people and are very excited at the prospects.  Rules of decorum keep me from sharing more until the results are final, but it was a very exciting day.  We still need to see quite a few more people, for even though we open July 16, we are hoping to have the cast final next week, so we have time to tweak the script with our cast on its feet during the rehearsal process.  This is my favorite part of the process... so I'm making an effort to relax and enjoy!


'Beautiful' - a New Musical Adaptation of Hedda Gabler - June 9th


The first developmental reading of this new adaptation, with book by Adrian Bewley, music by Cindy O'Connor, and lyrics by Larry Todd Johnson will take place June 9, 2010, 8:30pm, at the Secret Rose Theatre in North Hollywood, CA. 

For reservations, go to:!/event.php?eid=119078281463957


It's Official! '40 is the New 15' opens July 16 at the NoHo Arts Center


Follow my blog over the next two months while I update you on every step of the process! 


February 28 - 'Next To Normal'


On Saturday the 28th my partner and I took time out from my busy production schedule to see 'Next To Normal' on Broadway.  I had previously downloaded the music on iTunes, so I thought I knew what to expect, but the show far exceeded my expectations.  From a production standpoint, the show was impressive across the board, and the performances (particularly of the two female leads) were spectacular.  What I wasn't expecting is how moving and emotional it is; and that despite the many leaps in time and place, the storytelling and character arcs are quite clear.  

Much of the music, as is often true in a 'character study' piece, involved the main characters expressing their feelings directly and unapologetically to each other and/or the audience.  My work got criticized a bit for doing this last weekend, and it was somewhat vindicating to see an award-winning Broadway show full of such songs.

Some of the most effective moments in the show, however, involved characters describing a memory or event with a set of lyrics that evoked an emotion as much as or more than told a story.

From a learning perspective, this show stands as an example to me that an audience will follow a show much more nimbly than one might expect, and that I can perhaps allow myself to be more poetic, more 'random' and perhaps even more obtuse, without necessarily losing the audience in the process.

I would highly recommend the show, which approaches dysfunctionality and mental illness in a raw and approachable way.  I enjoyed it, and was impressed by it, but more importantly, it moved me.