They are all the topics of brand new fifteen-minute musicals that will have their world premiere on June 23 and 24 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood. The annual 15 Minute Musicals are a decades-long tradition at the Academy for New Musical Theatre, and one of the hottest tickets in town.
The 15 Minute Musical Project concludes each season of the Academy’s world-famous Core Curriculum of the writers’ workshop, which has been in existence for over 40 years.
For the final project of the curriculum, composers, lyricists and bookwriters are put together on writing teams and are given eight short weeks to write, revise and polish a brand-new musical written for actors whom they’ve never met before.
“It’s like a rite of passage,” says Elise Dewsberry, the Academy’s Artistic Director and dramaturge/producer of this season’s 15 Minute Musicals. “We design the process to imitate a full-length show in a professional theatre: draft, rehearsal, rewrites, rehearsal, opening. It’s really a wonderful experience, but it’s often stressful, just like a million-dollar opening night. Our writers’ names are in the program, and it’s important to them they write the best show they possibly can, in the short amount of time we’ve given them.”
This season there will be three 15-minute musicals, featuring the same cast of four actors. The writers have been given a theme of Can’t Get Enough: three short musicals about addiction.
The shows and writing teams this season are:
The Lover: A Tale of Obsessive Love; Grace Jasmine (book and lyrics; Ron Barnett (music)
Smartest Zombie at Harvard; Bryon Richards (book); Natalie Elder (lyrics); Marc Macalintal (music)
Spoilers!; Mitch Glaser (book); Mike Shapiro (lyrics); Erik Przytulski (music)
The cast for all three musicals is: Noel Britton, Sara Gonzales, Jeffrey Landman, and Kevin Yee. The musicals will be directed by Joshua Finkel, and music directed by Ron Barnett.
As a special added bonus this season, we will also be giving a glimpse into the Core Curriculum process by having the cast sing samples of the assignments that have been written during the course of year.
Tickets for June 23 and 24 are $25, and are now on sale at www.anmt.org