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View: Submission NVP Comments View

Elijah Best
Shawn Miller
Liberty Naud
Tessie Wilmot
Shannon Corbeil
Joan Enguita Willingham
Cherissa Jackson
Connie Gail Baptiste
Anitra Lane
Diarra McCormick
John Lopez
Stephanie Kline
Anne Barlieb
Debra Flax
Nicholas M Garcia
Marcus Blevins
Brian N. Duchaney
John Garofolo
Takosha Swan
Cody Mower
Joshua Keller Katz
brenda garcia
Joy Mosley
Cedrick Matthew Terrell
Jackie ‘Jax’ Meyer
Addison Williams
Jennifer Marshall
Paulo Jorge Machado Dias Gonçalves
Richard Cordeiro
Diane M. Williamson
Allison Churchill
Gabriel Griffin
James Sarli
John Antonov
Dave Cartwright
Tamara Lawrence
Alex Krol
Shawn Eric Miller
Natalie Rebecca Lovejoy
Peter Borreggine
Penny Lee Deere
Lord Vidar Fagerholt
David Forster
J. Scott Price
Billie Estes
Frank Taylor
Mia Rivera
Jeffrey Golden
Elliott McKenzie
Steve Bingley
Michael Lockwood
Morgan John Dally
Jennifer Figueroa
Carol Thompson
Victor Hurtado
Katie Brady submitting on behalf of David Ramsey
Jean Noel Ruhland
David Hernandez
Stephen Nolly
George Nolly
J.A. Moad II
Jeff McCarley
Melissa Renee Milich
Travis Deyoung
Michael O’Dell
Nancy Coombs
Rosalie Cooper
Ting Du
Matthew T. Miller
Elaine Little
Ron Capps
Ron Barnett
Kelly Damann
Joshua H. Cohen
Rollin Jewett
Katie Brady
Eric C. Jones
Anita Prestdige
Cris Eli Blak
Brad Beaver
Stephanie Carlin
Alexander Craven
Mike von der Nahmer
Kerry Kazmierowicztrimm
Leland Frankel
Annabelle Revak
R. D. (Rick) Rhobajt
Filip Holacky
Christine Croyden
Jeff Dunne
Ogden Rime
Stephen Green
Sgt. Elise Green
Olivia Popp
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Olivia Popp


neckDEEP - really bad prosody; rather bland ordinary music.  We have better candidates.

5/7/3 - Musical sci-fi - fun premise and promise in book. Music is interesting and well notated - but lyrics are AWFUL - prosody stinks. But I think this gal is a force - and definitely a composer. We could really help her.

Clayton Daniel Briggs
     Book & Lyrics by Molly Reisman, Book & Music by Clayton Daniel Briggs


Impressive collaboration — good interplay of book and lyrics.  Music is varied, and trying to convey emotion (not just Tischifying lyrics).  But I’m disappointed the score itself is so underannotated, and there’s no mention of NMI in Clayton’s bio.  (What the –?  At least revise it when you’re submitting to NMI!)

7/7/5 - yep - I’m liking this work. Definitely good to go with this team.

Emma Lockwood
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Noah Sunday-Lefkowitz and Emma Lockwood


Something intriguing behind these lyrics; music is pastiche-y; book is in search of a unique voice (wayy too much about being an actor, and theatre references).  But this team could go some places if they get someone to push them.


There’s a “Perpetual Baby Face” song with Allie Costa written all over it.

N/A / 7/7 - good songs. No actual book material submitted, and the subject matter is sooooooooo boring to me - young people writing about how tough it is to be young. Does every New York team have to write one of these?

Celine Snippe
     Book and Lyrics by Celine Snippe, Music by Justin Gates


Lovecraft; searching through things in attic.  No score submitted.  And are two of the mp3’s identical (didn’t listen to them all the way through).

Tischy.  Competent; trusting the book’s power.  Lyrics lazy and underwhelming.

We’d want to see the score before we commit to this team.

I agree we would want to see a score - but these are Tisch grads so I assume the score will be in reasonable shape. Their horror musical would sure be difficult to stage…

Rachel Covey
     Book, Music & Lyrics


Focus on your hands.  Big-note accompaniment.  There’s some musical talent here, but it’s not even close to being ready for even NMI.  Stop/start musical structure; lyrics which are just something to sing…don’t really mean anything.  Pass.

4/7/5 - another composer - but somewhat better with lyrics. Dealing with very existential and “precious” stuff - but someone who likely has a future in the biz.

Jared Goudsmit
     Libretto by Jared Goudsmit, Music by Max Reinert.


PTA.  Music is catchy, but lyrics aren’t yet lyrics.  Score is a wreck, and script is formatted like a screenplay.  This guy’s someone to watch, though; in another 2-3 years.

Martin Gold
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Martin Gold


(Terrible chord symbols — essentially just naming the left hand’s note.)

Attentive and sensitive musical setting of lyrics.

4/7/6 - Tisch all the way - but very promising. Solo writer from Chicago. A good marriage of words and music - and more variety to the melodic line than often heard in Tischy songs.

Nicholas Duarte
     Book and Lyrics by Nicholas Duarte, Music and Lyrics by Shreya Jha

3/3/3 - disappointing submission from a Canadian male/female team. Story of several young couples dealing with the issues of love and dating. Very little book submitted; songs are very simplistic, overly wordy, scores are just lead sheets with simplistic melodies and chord symbols.

Sean Ullmer
     Music, Lyrics and Book by Sean Ullmer

N/A / 4 / 3    I wish he had included more book instead of just the context and the sentence prior to the song. Not really possible to evaluate his bookwriting. I feel like there is promise in the music - but the demos are horrific because he has arranged it for a small live band and they are way out of tune - it’s painful (singers are better than the musicians).  Rita the Cleaning Lady - could be fun idea - but I don’t understand the song spotting choices - and I especially don’t understand the final Control number. Very possibly an interesting composer here - but I don’t know how we would present this material.

David Quang Pham
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by D. Q. Pham


Terrible lyrics (English probably not a first language here); intriguing subject matter (Particle Physics), but not even close to consideration.

Francesco Redica
     Book by Kira Mepham, Music & Lyrics by Francesco Redica and Joe Archer, additional lyrics by Daniel Walford


No book, no pdf, no score — just mp3’s.  BUT! The tracks and performances are really electric, and powerful.

The theme bores me (“as he struggles with his sexuality….”) - and the selections are labeled “The opening”, “the power ballad”, and “the love song.”  All so cliche musical theatre.

Not sure what to do with this team.  They talk about having finished their show in 2017, but they don’t have any pdf’s?


Yeah, I suggest we pass on this team. Their demos are indeed very well produced, so us doing a concert version of their songs won’t impress them or help them much at all. And I’m so borrrrrred by their song choices - such generic, self-absorbed, whiney moments - and they last so looooooong.

Zev Burrows
     Book & Lyrics by Mark Evan Chimsky, Music by Zev Burrows

N/A  / 6 / 3 …once again, no book submitted - just context for three songs (were we unclear?). There seems to be a lot of musical promise, but in general I don’t like how the melodies lie, and the lyrics are banal - and the idea of high school kids dealing with coming out is just so old news - and this doesn’t seem to be approaching it in any new way. (and the bookwriter on this one is in his 60s)

Adina Kruskal
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Adina Kruskal


Tick tick.  Simplistic music - jam-it-in-there prosody.  2nd piece single-note left hand.  Not yet a composer.

Ideas are about music players and auditioners.  Not much to SAY yet.

Malory Torr
     Book by Gordon Torr, Music by Malory Torr Lyrics by Malory Torr and Gordon Torr

5/2/3 - lots of info about what they are intending; some competence in the book; but the music (no score submitted) is extremely simplistic (notated on the lyric pages with chord symbols)

Stephanie L. Carlin
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Stephanie L. Carlin

N/A / 7 / 4 - once again, not much book submitted. Clearly a composer, but lyrics are underwhelming (and her demo singing is out of tune). Story of anxiety and depression …

John M. Waller
     Book, Music and Lyrics by John M. Waller

0 - John states that he has been writing for 30+ years so he is not eligible

Dylan Schifrin
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Dylan Schifrin


Y2K; Yale. Music is quite competent and well-notated.  Lyrics are like his video’s rambling introduction…a bunch of words at the end of which time we’re confused about what was just said.  Needs a collaborator; could be a force.  But he’s bogged down by his words.

Marisa Wexler
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Marisa Wexler

4/4/4  - Two shows both dealing with gender issues - one in our world, one in a world of humans and faes. Music is rocky but pretty simplistic. Book for human story is interesting but everyone seems to be fine with the transgender reveal - where is the conflict? Fantasty story is pretty textbook.

Sam Diedrich
     Music by Sam Diedrich, Book & Lyrics by Aubrey Lavender and Aidan Mantho

3/3/3 - couldn’t get into this one. Submitted scores are for several instruments - but with nothing written out for the piano (they suggest it should be “improvized”). Story of lumberjack issues narrated by Paul Bunyon and John Henry. Not musically interesting enough to me to pursue.

Eric C. Jones
     Music by Joshua Davis & Lyrics & Book by Eric C. Jones

Couldn’t access the pdf’s; the “score” links to Google Drive zip file requesting some third party ZIP software…so I’m moving on.

But the bookwriter here is 50-somsething-year-old Erik Jones from Texas — who has flaked on NMI three times before.  His collaborator is 26.

Rebecca Murillo
     Music & Lyrics by Rebecca Murillo


Jack and Jill going up a mountain, and a dinosaur on a journey to find a comet.  Music is well-produced, but not a unique voice.  Lyrics are just word salad pop cliche.

3/8/5 - a very talented composer - lyrics are acceptable. She works with different bookwriters - two of these are submissions are with one guy (dinosaur story and Jack & Jill adaptation) - third one is from one where she is writing book as well for first time. About a Cuban escaping on a raft. Very song-writery - but lots of promise.

Matthew Shaker
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Matthew Shaker

0 - he admits to be 59 and is therefore ineligible. What’s up? Was the submission request unclear???

Maggie Ludwig
     Book by Maggie Ludwig & Kristina Bryan, Music by Maggie Ludwig & Kristina Bryan, Lyrics by Kristina Bryan & Maggie Ludwig


(See Elise’s comments — women in coalmining).  No score.

Ouch; I can’t listen to that out-of-tune singing.  Do I need to?

4/6/5 - women in coalmining. No score submitted; but first 20 pages of script. bluegrass music - heavy on guitar. A bet to sleep with a woman - seems a bit heavy handed. (female team - they have won some awards and now live in New York)

Frank Toncar
     Book by Ben Covello, Music and Lyrics by Frank Toncar


Couldn’t access pdf’s;, only video link.  They look like a band-song-writing team, rather than musical theatre writers — but because they write:  “Book files are only the lyrics of the songs, and the score files don’t have the lyrics or melodies, but are currently being worked on.” it’s hard to evaluate this submission.  Might just need to pass on them and select more serious teams.

Charlene Tashnizi
     Book by Charlene Tashnizi, Music by Charlene Tashnizi, Lyrics by Charlene Tashnizi, Additional Lyrics by Isabella Tolentino, Book Edited by Ellen Lu and Isabella Tolentino


The team is comprised of 15 year olds, and their work is not ready to go.

Billy Recce
     Music and Lyrics by Billy Recce


Heidi Fleiss - everybody wants my black book.  Promising.  Very kitchy/affected bio and works.  Theatrical, but self-winky.

Book writing stage directions are theatrical and visual; actual dialogue though is stiff and on-the-nose.

4/7/5.. definitely accomplished.

Charli Eglinton
     Concept, Book, Music and Lyrics by Charli Eglinton


Impressive submission.  She’s 19.  Her notation is pretty awful — she clearly creates in a sequencer or DAW…her tracks are cool, but her actual composition is simplistic.  Lyrics not very good; but she’s a force to be reckoned with, and I think we should nurture her.  (We might want to workshop her with both piano and tracks, and steer her towards composition rather than green sequins.)

I didn’t look at her book writing.

She didn’t really submit any book beyond what is contained in the songs - but the songs are great! The Detective is Working on it song is a really fun duet; and the Flawless song is fun. I definitely like her stuff.

Celina Reynes
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Celina Reynes; Arrangement by Tony Eiras
Blake Dylan Pilger
     Book by River Kai Pilger, Music and Lyrics by Blake Dylan Pilger

I think we should help Blake along as best we can.  They is going to have a hard time of it.

Having said that, if we didn’t know them, I think we’d take a pass on this submission as being pretentious and arbitrary.


Not sure what’s up with “River Kai Pilger” - a sibling? Cousin? Alter-ego? Blake’s music is, as always, really really interesting. The book writing is heavy-handed and amateur. The demos are rehearsal tracks, with vocal lines but no voices. CAN we help Blake any further?

Jonah Sorscher
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Jonah Sorscher

A high school student.  Guy discovering another guy is gay.

Very green; simplistic; imitative.  Though, for a high-schooler, ambitious that he’s working at scoring already, and found a contest on the internet.

Not ready for New Voices…but I wonder if there’s something Andee might want us to do with/for him.


High school student from Cincinatti; his musical has a vote with two different endings. Very derivative and basically simple - but a good conversational voice and some promising lyric writing. Only submitted 1 (simple) score.

Evan Johnson
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Evan Johnson and Socks Whitmore

mental illness, severe anxiety attacks, sexual assault, eating disorders, and suicidal thoughts

lousy demo (both voices out of tune); not very friendly application (making us go to external link and timecode); live performance equally out of tune (probably the same girl?)

Tischy; not a unique voice.  Competent enough team, but uninteresting.


Evan Johnson and Socks Whitmore; both local (CalArts students); this is from their musical WE ARE HERE which was just performed at CalArts. Tischy but nicely conversational. Overt heavy-handed book writing. But potentially a good team here.

Matthew Brown
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Matthew Brown

Scores are in good shape, but for a composition major, his chords are very very basic.  Pleasant enough, but elementary.

Still, compared to most of the rest of the NVP submissions this year, at least the scores are playable and singable.


Junior at Pomona College; involved in program called “The Green Room” that sounds really interesting; got an actual production of his new musical. Has worked with bookwriter before and probably should do more of that. More of a composer - book is rudimentary, lyrics aren’t great. But I think there’s a composer here.

Jacob Ryan Smith
     Music & Lyrics by Jacob Ryan Smith

This guy can write…but he’s writing the same Tischy stuff we’ve heard for a 15 years.  Same topics, same rhythms, same three-name monikers.  Submission underwhelms me, but he’s very A Little New Music and seems ready to go.


Solo writer; junior at U of Mich in Musical Theatre; lots of views on his stuff; finalist for O’Neill. Obviously very good - very Tischy story songs - wish he had a bookwriter.

Ryan Martin
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Ryan Martin

(All E’s all the time.)

I didn’t download from Dropbox.  I would have listened, but I don’t want to download, so I didn’t.

I could tell from his scores, though, that there’s an energy and rhythm to this guy’s music.

He’s my only recommendation among this year’s submissions.  Again, though, Tisch, and vocal lines are Johnny-one-note.

(Note in his book pdf he does that same weird Adrian Bewley “of her look” as opposed to “off her look”)



Chicago (Northwestern grad - did WaMuu). I think this guy might actually be a triple threat - very promising. (you don’t have to download from Dropbox, by the way - I was able to play it directly online)

Shayna Toh
     Book, music and lyrics by Shayna Toh


I like this persona and biography.  I can’t reconcile the over-produced demo with the two lead sheets.  My recommendation is that we reach out to her and ask for piano/vocal scores of something/anything, and if she can deliver, then perhaps we consider including her.

The only book-writing skills in this year’s submissions.


Singapore. A junior, probably at Tisch although she didn’t say so - has already had work produced at Playwrights Horizons. Book is interesting. Lyrics need work. Intros are repetitive, but then melody breaks free and is interesting and lovely. First score is orchestrated, next 2 are lead sheets. But she is a good composer.

Marisa Wexler
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Marisa Wexler

came out as trans; previously submitted to NVP.  Big Note notation.

pdf’s are sub-rudimentary; lyrics and book are guesswork.

amateur submission; pass.


Pittsburgh; science writer, book (for second selection) is amateur; opera (third piece) has some interesting accompaniment but melodies are that two-note stuff. She is right that her own singing is not good.

Mark Mc Quown
     Book by Mark Mc Quown, Music/Lyrics by Buddy Mix

“I am a member of NMI” — then he should know better than to submit just a sound file.  We can’t consider him based on this submission.

This pair (Mark McQuown and Buddy Mix) produced a musical in Hollywood in 1994 - so how could they possibly be under 26? Sound files only. big old pass

Lori Fischer
     Book by Lori Fischer, Lyrics by Lori Fischer Music by Lori Fischer, Music by Mark Allen

learning how to be an usher

music is okay if banal; lyrics are pretty bad; no book sample (or pdf); demos are terrible.

amateur submission; not interested.


how can either on this team be 26? She got her Masters at Tisch in 2008; he wrote music for Getting the Band Together (Davenport) and Tinyard Hill and Band Geeks - what? And yet this submission is pedestrian. Tischy but such uninteresting story material; no book element; no scores submitted. What a weird submission.

Weston Gaylord
     Book by Jessia Hoffman and Ken Savage, Music and Lyrics by Joel Chapman, Weston Gaylord and Matt Herrero

2/3/7  Time travel to pop-Isaac Newton.  This team is comprised of all performers, and the demo is electric, but the writing is banal and naive.  Not sure we can help these guys…or rather, not sure that they’d be interested in the kind of help we could give them.  Their audiences undoubtly scream-n-woo, so my guess is the team wouldn’t be interested in our feedback.  But let’s talk about them…maybe we can make a huge difference to their writing.

large team from Bay area (and LA) - working with their teacher? (this team submitted last year). Time traveling physicist has to fix her error of stopping Newton from experiencing the apple. Time Flies (fun choral singing - but who are they?) Very produced demo - can we do anything for them with piano only? (8 minute musical scene - lots of parts). (no scores??? - 3rd song has one) The 1666 world is totally anachronistic - why? (fun though). But I think this team is too unwieldy for us.

Carrie Caffrey
     Book by Max Beer, Carrie Caffrey, and Alex Rothfield, Music by Alex Rothfield and Max Beer, Lyrics by Carrie Caffrey

3/3/3  Superheroes come to life.  Johnny-one-note music accompaniment.  I would have expected more from Waa-Mu Show writers.  Take a deeper look if Elise ranks Top Ten — maybe the lyrics and music progress and turn into something more.

* 2 men/1 woman - Northwestern - songs from Wamuu show; mostly Tischy; one lead sheet but two scores; some promise

David Brush
     Music by Rachel Dean; Book and Lyrics by David Brush

1/2/5  Standalone songs/no book?  Amelia Earhart; Weightless.  Interesting, confident music, but pedestrian for-rhyme’s-sake lyrics.  Rachel (composer) deserves better.

* Male b/l; female composer (who was working with Nancy Cheser): she might be younger, he might be older based on bio. There is definitely a composer here (although she “fixes” the lyrics too much); I’m interested in her; the submission wasn’t so clear about the context for these songs

Kim Jinhyoung, preferred as Kim
     Music & Lyrics by Kim Jinhyoung

4/2/5 Premise of 2nd selection interesting (Korean daughter cut herself off from family, now anxious waiting to hear from them re her father), but lyrics are naive, and the premises for the other two songs make me long for this guy to find himself a bookwriter.

I’m guessing he is at Tisch as a composer, not a lyricist.

Henry Nettleton
     Music by Jake Chapman, Lyrics by Henry Nettleton

6/6/7 “It’s a Wonderful Life”.  These guys are the real deal.  But I wish they had something to SAY, rather than milling around in musical-theatre-centric topics.

two BMI guys (are 2 of their selections from BMI exercises? One for It’s a Wonderful Life; one for the movie “Her”). Stand alone piece for a pregnant woman with cello. 2 pieces were dreamy floaty … didn’t float my boat.

Makena Metz,
     Book by Makena Metz, Music and Lyrics by Makena Metz and Katiana Zimmerman

2/2/3 Meaning of Hannukah.  Lyrics are naive; score is completely underwritten (and bass clef for the male voice)…almost just a lead sheet.  Very disappointing submission.

Makena and Kat. Looks to me like they took a play Makena had already written - and threw two songs into it. The first is a solo “prayer” from one of the characters, the second is a rip-off of “Baby It’s Cold Outside” - but if this is intended to be a musical, it is far from finished. They would have better off telling us that they had only written two songs so far…

Natalie Stewart Elder
     Music by John Ervin Brooks, Lyrics by Natalie Stewart Elder, Book by Natalie Stewart Elder and John Ervin Brooks

8/6/8  Fun!  Jack and Jill with neighbor Bucket and a couch.  Made me laugh out loud when the couch sings.  A little bit too much sass in their bios (and some typos), so they might be obnoxious to work with, but they clearly have a bucket of talent.

**Natalie and a New York composer collaborator. Couch is an opera - tough to understand what they’re saying - but fun. Penis Fly Trap song fun - can’t really hear the third one - demo is bad. And I do wish they had submitted more book material! But a promising team.

Scott - did you listen to the other two songs?

Benji Goldsmith
     Book & Lyrics by Stefan Melnyk; Music by Benji Goldsmith

4/5/6  Final days of a Boston newspaper.  Strong interplay between music and book.  Interesting ideas; not fully realized.  Music has promising inner-voice work.  (If this team is on Elise’s Top Ten, SG should look more closely at it.)

* 2 guys: DEADLINE (about a dying newspaper) is their Tisch thesis show; sounds Tischy in a good way; professional submission.

Lisa Mongillo
     Book and Lyrics by Lisa Mongillo, Music by Jake Chapman

4/3/6 Cancer kids musical (unfair!).  Trying awfully hard to be cute and fun.  But energetic, charismatic if undisciplined music.  Trying to listen to the writing, not the subject…I think there’s a good team here; at least a good composer.  (Didn’t care much for their video, and the front row looked like they were having a terrible time.)  Introductions very self-inflating (they need some lessons in presentation….)

Is this composer the same guy who did the ALL CAP lyric submission?

* not sure; I wish the music they chose showed some of the “weird” and “madcap” elements mentioned in their prose. The composer guy submitted with someone else already; the lyricist girl doesn’t make much of the bookwriter claim and they haven’t included any “book” or even lyrics with their submissions - only scores. Three cancer surviving patients.

Jared Corak
     Book, Music & Lyrics by Chris Anselmo & Jared Corak

4/4/7 “River City” ripoff, and a lead-sheet.  These guys look like they’re emerging, but casting about looking for something to write (and don’t know it yet).  Talent here; I didn’t respond much to their actual submission.

** two guys - worked with NVP alum. one selection from new project FOUNTAIN (only a lead sheet); second from WAmuu show (making a new all american pastime) - folky flavor to music. I think there’s a team here, but I wish their submission were better (no third piece)

Katie Lam
     Music by Alex Parker, Book and Lyrics by Katie Lam

—  Railway Children — 500-page orchestral score.  That’s not going to work for us.  We might contact them and request piano-vocal of something/anything.


re the link:  I think it’s way pretentious for just some folks singing around a piano.  Might not be too much for “What’s On Stage” — but I think it’s trying too hard and find it a turn off.  (Though their accents are really convincing.)

** guy and gal from London; this is a very ambitious submission from a full musical that was performed in concert in London. Unfortunately, they’ve included only a full orchestral score - no piano reduction. Not sure the three songs they chose are the best - but we have the whole script and score. Make sure to check out the link - it is from a promo video for their concert - I love the way they have shot and staged it - could we do something like that?

Austin Nuckols
     Book and Lyrics by Lily Dwoskin, Music by Austin Nuckols

2/3/6 Uninteresting topic for a musical (Wollenscraft); park and bark lyrics.  Music looks fairly inventive, but tied to a lodestone of a project.

female bookwriter/lyricist; male composer; at least one a Tisch grad; first song sounded musically interesting at first but third one in particular is pastichey; demos are not good (not good singers); but a professional submission. Story of Mary Wollenscraft … but didn’t grab me.

Ethan Treiman
     Books, Music, and Lyrics by Ethan Treiman

1/2/7 Song-cycle-y.  Neo-classical piano music, reminds me of Blake Pilger.  But clueless lyrics and reason-to-sing.  Oh, dear, someone find this guy a lyricist and bookwriter FAST!

** this guy (19 year old at Yale for music and engineering) is something - Blake Pilger kind of music but singable … really interesting - and his bookwriting looks interesting as well. Someone we might want to get involved with!

Grace Oberhofer
     Book by Julia Izumi, Music by Grace Oberhofer, Lyrics by Julia Izumi and Grace Oberhofer

2/2/2 Bunny Isle.  Introduction indicates a passionate social agenda, but the writing doesn’t know how to deliver a message.  Already graduated…they should have found a clearer voice by now.

2 women - 1 current 1 former BMI; Legend of Bunny Isle - very subversive. Last score looks unplayable to me. They are trying some out-there stuff - but aren’t in control of it.

Phoenix Victoria
     Book, Music, Lyrics by Phoenix Victoria

2/2/1 No score.  Yelly/screamy bizarre demo.  I wanted to like the music, to justify the in-your-face-arrogant introductory comments, but the music is awful and there’s no score.

Kansas City native - rock opera King of the Internet - first piece over-produced demo, no score. Very alternative rock. (I don’t see where she plots to get him to propose? Is that in the book that wasn’t submitted?). Lyrics are stream of consciousness free verse … music repetitive. Although I love the title “I Love You So Much You Could Die”. We are not the right place for this material.

Stephen Hyde
     Music by Stephen Hyde, Lyrics/Book by Leoe Mercer

4/8/8  UK/America-obsessed.  Hiccups/snorts/yawns in the score.  High-energy bubble-gum music.  A lot of fun, but their UK-centric POV might feel ten years behind-the-times.  These guys might really love working with us.

* UK pair of guys; show about Kardashians, Marriage of Figaro, and couple. (sort of orchestral score, but it doesn’t say what instruments!). First song for Amelia is rather infectious. Second song from GUY (gay rom-com) is a little confusing; the characters don’t actually sing this song? But these guys are pushing boundaries - could be good to get to know. Then coffee shop musical (they are sneakily trying to get us extra lyrics by including several for each selection).

Brooke Magalis
     Book by Brooke Magalis & Clayton Daniel Briggs, Music by Clayton Daniel Briggs, Lyrics by Brooke Magalis

3/3/4  Clock which is tied to death.  Interesting premise, but in the hands of a bookwriter who doesn’t know what to do with it.  Music’s on the simple side.  (And shame on Clayton for submitting to NMI with so many formatting errors.)

female/male (Clayton): music nice but sometimes relentless; I question the spotting (solos, reflective, past tense). story set in 15thC Prague - about the clock

Charlie Oh
     Book and Lyrics by Charlie Oh, Music by Ross Baum

3/7/6 Mascot characters.  Lovely musical setting of lyrics; lyrics know when they’re entering B-sections.  Didn’t look at the book…is it ok?

*** 2 guys: Northwestern and Tisch grads - now at BMI. two songs from MASCOT musical; one from musical taking place during war; I love this music.

Emily Chiu
     Book/Lyrics by Molly Reisman, Music by Emily Chiu

6/4/6 Whale who falls in love with installation artist’s soundscape.  Really quirky book topics.  Music a little too proud-of-itself (5/4, 6/4, tongue flutter articulation), but responsive to lyrics.  Is this 2/3rd’s of the Holy Crab team?


Second look — liked this submission less the second time around.  3/3/5

Fly.  Cringy prosody; no sense of progression (it doesn’t repeat well).  Range issues.  Like the premise, don’t like the execution.


Robots — didn’t care for the rapid-rap, and multi-layering not very deft.  pdf didn’t display correctly for me.


Spinning — pretty vocal arrangement; pdf didn’t display properly.  Not very singable lyrics.

* two gals one a Tisch grad, the other currently currently in Tisch. Some really interesting stuff - pushing boundaries -but not sure they quite have a handle on it yet -but promising. (whale who can’t be heard by anyone else; and two songs from show about girl who builds a robot)

Julian Drucker
     Book by Monica Hannush, Music by Julian Drucker, Lyrics by Julian Drucker & Monica Hannush

2/2/4  Kid texts suicide note to psych ward.  Stinko lyrics; competent-but-green music; formatting not in control.  Arrangement compelling, but masking ordinary actual composition.  Didn’t look at any book — should I?

*** guy and girl - LA locals. (Julian attended the first weekend of Core this year, then said he had to wait til next year. We thought we had frightened him off - now that I hear his music, I don’t think that’s the case at all). I think there’s a team here.

Stephanie Carlin
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Stephanie L. Carlin

4/2/4  “Psychologist addresses audience so they can learn about psychology.”  Music plain/vanilla, under-arranged.  Lyrics are lame.  Book okay, but not interesting mise-en-scene.

Stephanie - student at Berklee. show about a girl working at a place like BuzzFeed. very repetitive melodic line and comp, lousy prosody. Description for Rose and Adam is awful - song is better than description. Still awful prosody. In third song, the Psychiatrist makes up an ending for the characters. Some fun choral singing at end - but in all, the submission doesn’t do much for me.

Gretchen Midgley
     Book and Lyrics by Gretchen Midgley, Music by John Henderson

2/2/5 Peter Pan from Wendy’s perspective.  This team has potential, but it looks like they’ve been chasing this one show too long…it looks labored and over-thought, desperately trying to make it mean something.  I’d like to see their work on a completely different show…they’re interesting to me, but I think they’ve been misguided by the attention that Wendy has had.

Book/lyrics woman from D.C.; music her teacher? Texas. Music is all pretty dreamy (lovely - but not much variety). Peter Pan from point of view of Wendy (what’s the audience?)

Dylan Marshall
     Lyrics and Book by Dylan Marshall, Music by Earl Marrows

4/2/2 A tree longing for a bigger role in fairy tales.  Description of premise is really interesting, but oh-dear execution at every level.  Quarter-note accompaniment and all caps cliche lyrics.

2 Australian guys; cute idea; some fun book stuff; some fun stuff in lyrics; only one score which they said took a long time and it isn’t good. Music is adequate. About a tree tired of being in the background.

Alex Petti
     Music and Lyrics by Alex Petti, Book and Lyrics by Annie Pulsipher

3/4/4  obvious zombie stuff (wouldn’t it be funny if there were a zombie musical?)

Male/female team with good pedigree: show is DEAD BOYFRIENDS meant to “upend” idea of bad boyfriends using zombie, ghost, and vampire. some clever stuff (Zom-baby); rocky pop; a couple of video demos from a bare-bones production. Not as sharply clever as it wants to be for social satire - but promising team.

Evan Cullinan
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Evan Cullinan

2/2/3 “Based on my own life, but…”  Rambling introductories.  Young uniniformed musicalizing with pretentious lyrics.  Ambitious artist, but still very green.  Interesting to see where he is in 2-3 years.

* solo writer from Chicago; self-aware show about a writer with anxiety trying to write a musical; this guy has promise - wish he would get some collaborators

Angela Sclafani
     Music and Lyrics by Angela Sclafani

2/2/6  Fitzgerald adaptation.  All about production; not much actual composition, and arrangements aren’t by this solo author.

Through-sung story of Zelda and F.Scott; jazzy rock/pop; this woman wrote this for herself - great demos - she has a quirky voice - I don’t think we could perform anything useful for her. Music is lead sheets.

Spencer Robelen
     Book and Lyrics by Nina Kauffman, Music by Spencer Robelen

5/4/4  The Boy Who Cried Succubus.  Best part of the submission is the title.  Verrrry Tischy; classic Tischy.  Self-referential; lyrics downbeat-driven; contemporary sensibility; naive sociology.  If we take six teams, they’d make the cut.

**Girl (b/l) and guy (m) - both Tisch Grads. Boy Who Cried Succubus (I’m so sad she turned out to actually be a Succubus). VERY well prepared integrated score. Rocky music. Nice integration of book and song. Fun diction in the book. Third song is more “Tischy”.

Pablo Rossil
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Pablo Rossil

-/2/2  Jazz font lead sheet; typos in lyrics; awkward grammar.  Not a contender.

(Is this Pablo of “Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum”?)

yes - this is Pablo of Forum. He might have talent - but this submission wasn’t ready. He hasn’t finished the show, and clearly hasn’t notated much of anything. I agree, not a contender this year.

Madeleine Hale
     Book, music and lyrics by Madeleine Hale

2/2/5 Dido and Anaeus.  Cliche musical theatre aspirations/execution (classical work, pop score; pop “across the sea we’ll be together/forever/you and me”  Pretty music, but a banal result.

Australian lawyer! I thought this would be a through sung opera (from the first selection) - but it isn’t. The book is actually quite clever and fun - but the music is all a bit full of itself - and she has provided a fully orchestrated score, no piano reduction.

Kira Stone
     Music & Lyrics by Kira Stone, Book by Chelsea Hickman

2/2/4 PTSD/OCD.  Very professional arrangements by other people; I worry whether she’s a humposer.  Introductions make me cringe, and the playwright’s bio makes me worry she doesn’t know what she’s doing.

2 young girls - I would have been interested until I saw that the songs were “arranged” by someone else. They all sounded a bit the same …

Matthew Wexler
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Matthew Wexler

3/6/5  Good sense of the interplay between book and lyrics.  Lyrics working hard at pure rhyme, although often to the detriment of sense.  Music rhythmic and peppy; probably a lot of fun to sing.  Book the weak link here.  Worth looking at this guy.  Annoying submission through Dropbox (I didn’t bother), which might be a red flag?


Second look:  Vimeo recording — spot-checking it not very impressive.  Audio-alone excerpt dull and uninventive. Dropbox pdfs show a dexterous sense of jamming lyrics onto the downbeat, but an undisciplined lyric itself.  Not sure whether he has the tools we need him to have in order for us to be able to help him.

** man drugging wife to forget her past life; what an interesting idea! music is pretty simplistic, though. Some fun lyrics and ideas. He is a PHD candidate studying ovarian cancer? only one score.
so much potential here … probably the most theatrical submission I’ve seen yet!

- (the dropbox links are to other scores - so we have more to look at)

Michael Elderkin
     Music and Lyrics by Michael Elderkin, Book by Elliott Hemp

-/4/6 Soundcloud; no pdf’s.  Orchestrated, but a little under-composed nonetheless.  Not really melodies, but just setting of lyrics.  Clearly a motivated writer here, but I wonder if they’re missing some critical skills (notation), melody.  Lyrics are serviceable but meh.  I like other submissions better than this, but if we were taking seven teams, they’d probably make the cut.

2 guys (from England?) one a basoonist! Mascherato the Musical takes place in Venice in the past. First selection - over-produced demo but sounds great (but no score file). No book submitted - only the three songs (and no scores). All three songs are soaring lovely ballads - but no variety. (“warm embrace of her smiling face” - Scott will hate that!)

Zev Burrows
     Book & Lyrics by Mark Evan Chimsky, Music by Zev Burrows

5/2/4  Shakespeare’s encounter with Moroccan ambassador.  Interesting topic (though…yet another “here’s where Shakespeare got the inspiration for…” Civi-Cat says yawn).  Prosody is pretty awful, and the music is pedestrian.   I think the book/lyricist has more potential than the composer…if he linked with a composer with high standards, he might see what he has yet left to learn.  He’d really really benefit from Core.

Zev and Mark (from ASCAP); Will Shakespeare has decided to set the record straight and narrates his story. Badly recorded demos by composer. Tough for me to assess the songs because the composer is so pitchy! And in general I don’t like the way he’s set this lyrics.

(Sadly, the composer is the young chippy - the book/lyrics guy is an older man who lives in Boston)

Sharon Fogarty
     Book, music and lyrics by Sharon Fogarty

2/2/2  Amateur submission; font issues on the pdf; home recordings; disclaimer about SoundCloud.  I’d forgive all that if the writing were incandescent, but it’s not, and no one else had this many problems from top to bottom.  No reason to try to fight through all the troubles this writer has in putting together a submission.

* Sharon (one woman); Go Back to Being A Whore - fun scene; song is pastiche but well done. Christmas Trash score is a lead sheet (first and third song not). Jazzy pastiche.3rd is Nuns in El Salvador. Very bizarre but intriguiging book scene with nuns and priest. Music is very theatrical.

Richard Lindenfelzer
     Music by Grant Carey, Book and Lyrics by Richard Lindenfelzer

5/4/3  Music is harmonically static (a lot of repeated notes); Tishy without the rippling rhythm.  If we were taking nine teams, I’d recommend these guys; they look energetic and write pleasing stuff, but the actual writing leaves me indifferent.  (But if Elise rates these guys high or if their book is fantastic, I wouldn’t reject them.)


Disclaimer:  the typo in their “where did you hear about us” prejudiced my look at this team.

* Richard (Tisch) and Grant (LA). Sad that the aliens sound so HUMAN. And that they are converted from their strength and lack of emotion by one viewing of a Golden Age musical. There is talent here - but the story is old and predictable despite being sci-fi. Disappointing. The “To Kiss A Girl” song (from a different show about the Man in a strange place) is much more interesting - and I really like the book scene. BUT the music is that one phrase repeated over and over - why do the kids do that????

Becca Grumet
     Book by Becca Grumet and Madelyne Heyman, Music by Becca Grumet, Madelyne Heyman, and Will Robertson, Lyrics by Becca Grumet, Madelyne Heyman, and Will Robertson

4/6/6.  Weed Shop.  Energetic score; lyrics making valiant attempts.  Promising, though I worry about the complicated credits, and the over-arranged score (would they care about our plain ol’ piano?)

2 women (local); musician guy (Maine); music is predictable pastichey (although orchestrated score); Weed Store musical (most of their work is parody).

Weston Gaylord
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Joel Chapman, Weston Gaylord, Matt Herrero, Jessia Hoffman and Ken Savage
3 5 7 Newton.  Guitar, not piano.  Ord music.  Trying to be casual, contemp, but just mild POV. 15

A team of five including an adult - mostly Bay area - this show was presented at TheatreWorks.  Set in 1666; there is a great male/female duet (the 3rd piece).

Grace Oberhofer
     Music and Lyrics by Grace Oberhofer, Additional Text by Allison Benko
3 6 2 poor sense of recit; leans on chromatic 11

Opera of A Doll’s House.  Really interesting and layered music; lyrics are pretty mundane.

Michael Stancliff
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Michael Stancliff
2 5 2 Needs a collaborator.  OK music 9

I’m sure he’s very earnest - but this seems very young and dime-a-dozen.

Jackson Teeley
     Music, Lyrics, Book by Jackson Teeley
3 6 3 pretty, pleasant music; production values of video!  Garage Band composer. 12

I think this guy is the real deal as a composer; and has promise as a lyricist.  And even some book chops.

Cristian Guerrero
     Book and Lyrics by Cristian Guerrero, Book and Lyrics by Andrew Moorhead, Music and Lyrics by Steven Schmidt
2 7 4 Italian blackshirts; acad version of book; underscorey music; but some sense of vocal theatrics, and it’s a team 13


Local (LA) team.  Not much book submitted here - hard to tell what the tone of the show is supposed to be.  Some fun choral singing; but 3rd piece seems traditional where first one seemed tonally more interesting.

Shayna Toh
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Shayna Toh
4 3 3 Underdeveloped score; unstructured lyrics; dialogue combination of stiff and fresh 10

She is from Singapore and has a cool resume; but has provided lead sheets; and music that sounds so disappointingly New York Tischy.

Marina Toft
     Book & Lyrics - Marina Toft; Music - David Lancelle
5 7 6 I remember this team from last year.  How’s the STORY of this project? 18

Tischy in a really good way.  (Marina submittted last year with Benji - Herder & Weaver).  The first selection has some great choral stuff that would be useful in concert.  Good team here.

Oliver Houser
     Book, Music & Lyrics by Oliver Houser
3 6 6 Nice trading between voices; a little Sondheim-shriney.  Lyrics look like they’re up to something.  (Maybe he’s a lyricist but not a composer.)  Book looks bland. 15

Very talented - more reminiscent of Sondheim than Tischy; the “Friday” song was already featured at ALNM

Jude Obermüller
     Words and Music by David Gomez & Jude Obermüller
7 4 NY and London; does he need us?  Sophisticated harmonies; obvious lyrics and poor rhymes 11

Excited by this team (one of them is British?) - very accomplished work …

Emily Chiu
     Book and Lyrics by Lauren Taslitz, Music by Emily Chiu
3 7 4 Pretty music, fun to sing; bland lyrics; goopy book. 14


Female team.  first two selections from a more interesting variation on the herder and weaver story from last year.  Last one from new show - love the music (not the singer).

Amanda D’Archangelis
     Book and Lyrics by Anderson Cook Music and Lyrics by Amanda D\'Archangelis
5 7 5 Professional submission; seasoned.  Book looks wild; lyrics not as strong as rest of team. 17


Some wild stuff here - fun and provocative.

J.M. Gates
     Music and Lyrics by J.M. Gates
2 5 5 song-cycle; promising but undercooked music; lyrics functional 12

Classmate of Blake at Berklee.  Also an interesting composer; not really a lyricist (or a melodist).  Song cycle.

Eliot Rhys
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Eliot Rhys & Oscar Jacques
3 4 3 Time travling “Stag Do”.  Roman gladiators; poor lyrics; book thinks it’s funnier than it is.  No score?  Bangy accompaniment, not about melody, about rhythm. 10


Team from Edinburgh - fun, over the top story line.  Only 2 pieces submitted so far.

Chris Anselmo
     Christopher Anselmo (Music & Lyrics & sometimes Book)
2 4 3 Waa-Mu ballad; “non-traditional MT” but it’s not very daring for all that. 9


He is experimenting; didn’t provide scores; isn’t a bookwriter; there might be something interesting here.  Not sure if I’m seeing it.

Lily Dwoskin
     Book and Lyrics: Lily Dwoskin, Music: Xiaodan Zhang
3 4 5 Baum story.   Done a lot to Baum’s story, but result is meh 12

2 women (one from China); Tischy in a good way.  Great team.

Jordan Kamalu
     Book by George D. Nelson, Music, Lyrics, and Orchestrations by Jordan Kamalu
3 7 6 Trailer park mom longing for better days for her son.  Scored for guitars and percussion.  Clearly serious musician.  Not sure I like the project, but this guy’s an up-and-comer. 16

This is a very talented young man - teamed up with an older professor.  But the music and lyrics are well crafted and strong - I like this guy.

Sami Horneff
     Music and Lyrics by Sami Horneff, Book by Michael Ker
3 6 5 No score; (s)he’s a pianist/performer.  Music is paddy rather than composed.  Lyrics are earnest but imitative rather than original.  Book looks like an excuse for songs. 14

Sami is a quintessential Tisch composer (and slightly sloppy lyricist); but her collaborator is older.

Eric Kofman
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Eric Kofman
2 4 4 German/Jews; book smells academic, not earned.  The one pdf looks like it’s guitar-driven, and not very composed.  I remember this guy from SF.  Earnest, eager, but no performer, and scared/insecure of his talents.  Terrible idea for a musical. 10


San Francisco solo writer.  Wildly ambitious project.  Hideous prosody.  Guitarist.

Jonathan Horn
     Music by Jonathan Horn, Lyrics by Luke Davidson & Jonathan Horn, Book by Luke Davidson
6 8 8 You had me at the title.  I’ll shove the pie down your throat and you’ll never laugh again.  Bad demos. 16

I wanted to like this team more than I did; lots of promise and inventiveness.

Ariel Mitchell
     Book and Lyrics by Ariel Mitchell, Music and Concept by Edison Hong
2 4 3 Collaborator is Edison Hong.   “Build a map to your heart” Lyrics cliche or just ??  “She are her husband deal with the news” 9


Tischy rambling structure but lovely music and interesting lyrics; I really love the bookwriting - interesting and unexpected.  I’m interested in this team.

Sasha Bartol
     Book by Jeffrey Morse, Music by Sasha Bartol, Lyrics by Sasha Bartol and Jeffrey Morse
4 4 4 Past tense, after suicide.  Accompaniment is chords, and bland, but looks like some wonderful vocal writing. 12

The team has potential; but this is an earnest piece with the main character as a high school boy who has committed suicide.

Erin Reifler
     Book/Music/Lyrics by Erin J. Reifler
2 3 2 Not yet come into her own.  Big Note Music.  Lyrics vague and cliche.  Story re band instruments. 7

A trombonist who rhymed “couplet” with “Juliet”

Lia Rodriguez
     Book, Music, Lyrics by Lia Rodriguez
2 4 3 Dustbowl, peach farmers.  Arranger for piano and cello/violin with bad notation and whole-notey chords, though it’s very pretty.  Cornpone words. 9

Solo female writer based in Texas.  Fully orchestrated scores.  Keeps clearing the stage for heart-felt ballads.  Some talent here but needs collaborators.

Caroline Munsell




Cynical Christmas — wishing on a genie…ooo, I wish you would all stop singing.  Wasted wish.  Self-referential.  Music for the Pillowman.  Pillowman music is impromptu-y on the piano and not very interesting.



Some promise here - a very enterprising young woman.  But very unformed - and nothing here we could present in public.  If we have the funds/options, it would be great to nurture her - but not as an NVP winner.

Ben Boecker
     Book Music and Lyrics by Ben Boecker



Cederalla/My True Love again.  (Disappointing he didn’t submit anything new; perhaps he was trying to show how much his show has changed as a result of NMI feedback.)  Group narrative; theatrically naive.  My True Love has changes, but they’re local, and not very deep.  Not sure we want to take him a second year in a row?  (And why does the pdf say “Printed for use by Joshua Finkel”?)



I really loved the opening of the show (think it would be great for got musical); and I do think there were some very good changes to My True Love.  I also really like his facility with lyrics, and his sense of humor.  I think this guy is really talented.  (although he was Merit Winner last year, almost everyone thought My True Love was the best song out of all our NVP songs last year - so I think it could indeed make sense to boost him up to winner this year.)

Simon Riker
     Book, Music, & Lyrics by Simon Riker & Emerson Sieverts




GRUG - story of discovery of fire.  Edison to audience, snorts coke, dances.  Rhymes obvious, lyric overwritten.  No score?  Book is unclear.   “I Got Stood Up” — pronoun issues (to you, her, she?)  A Dude Bird eating someone’s liver.  Odd subject matter; hard to know what the author sees in it.

Blake Dylan Pilger
     Music and Lyrics by Blake Dylan Pilger



Song cycle.  Book aspects of his writing are not promising, but his music is amazing even for an adult.  “Megan” is so ambitious.  Baaad demos.  How can we help this guy?  Would Jeff Marx support a workshop and Brian Graden support a recording/demo project?



Agreed that his demos are TERRIBLE.  He is more Gettel/LeChiusa than I remembered; but I know he can be Tischy or pastichy as well - this is just his artsy side.  But he certain works to have his music convey emotion.  He needs more work as a lyricist, and he needs a bookwriter (my book score is just the average of lyrics and music) - and he desperately needs demos.

Marina Toft
     Music by Benji Goldsmith, Book & Lyrics by Marina Toft



The Herder and the Weaver, who meet only once a year.  Music in the pocket, but ordinary.  Promising team, not very good material.



Cute children’s piece - lots of fun.  Wonder what else they have in them, though … (very Tischy)

Clara Luthas
     Book and Lyrics by Clara Luthas, Music by Minhui Lee



Waltz in 5/4 (interesting; initially a gimmick, but actually supported by action of the book).  Childhood friends (stop motion animation), reunited.  Awkward book; playwrighty.  Pretty music.  One piece with fragments for lyrics.  Team feels like they’re trying to break rules before they’ve mastered the basics…but doing a pretty good job of it.  We could help them.



Two women so I’m pulling for them - but I agree with Scott that they are trying to break rules they haven’t yet mastered.   The conceit of the book (past/present/videos) is pretty ambitious and I’m not sure it would ever be anything but hugely confusing.

Brandon Scott Grayson
     Book, Music, & Lyrics by Brandon Scott Grayson



Family dog is dying, and the family gathers.  Music is pretty, if quarter-note-y and ignorantly notated.  He’s not yet studying the craft.

Suzi MacGregor
     'Maid, Mother, Crone'. Book by Karen Chandler, Music and Lyrics by Suzi MacGregor



Maid, Mother, Crone.  Sound files only.  Lullaby.  Yoga, spiders (huh?).  Odd music, arbitrary vocal line.  Pass.

Rachel Garnet
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Rachel Garnet


She only  submitted a lyric/score (very simplistic looking) and two book scenes - but the book scenes are truly lovely!  She is clearly a bookwriter.  Not sure what she thought she was submitting for … but her scenes were my favorite of anything I’ve read so far.

Katie Lam
     Book and Lyrics by Katie Lam, Music by Alex Parker



Amateur Dramatics.  Railway Children.  Hired for a British awards show to write opening number.  Promising summary, but lyrics cliche (“my turn to shine; time for life to begin.”), no progression.  Music is lovely (orchestrated by someone else — how much of the piano accompaniment was theirs?).   I’m lukewarm on this team; their music is fine, their lyrics are substandard but get the job done.



I agree with Scott - fine music, okay lyrics, but nothing terribly exciting.

Jeff Daye
     Music by Jeff Daye, Book & Lyrics by Laura Kleinbaum



Cleopatra.  Rock/DJ.  Sassy, sharp dialogue.  Good character aggression in the lyrics, which relate to the book. But the score is just vocals without piano (is that what they meant to upload?)  Melody is uninspired; music is produced rather than composed (e.g. loops and sound, rather than composition).

Can we take the book writer without his colleagues?



I agree that music is produced - but it has a great groove.  The Cleo/Anthony duet (can’t look at you) is a great dramatic musical scene.  But could we do this justice in concert?  Probably no score - just tracks.  The opening song seems serious but the scene that follows seems tongue-in-cheek humorous and purposefully anachronistic - feels like a mismatch after such a long serious (repetitive) song.

Alex Ratner
     Book by Laurel Durning-Hammond, Music and Lyrics by Alex Ratner



Appalachia/Great Depression.  Shelling walnuts, listening to birds.  Pretty music, if tropic and old-fashioned.  Northern Sky might love this piece.  Sweet, Clay Zambo.  Prosody not very good, and book is quiet, quiet, quiet.  An audience-pleasing team, if not contemporary/forward-looking (not always a bad thing).



Not much book submitted - but an interesting, emotional story.  Lovely music - too bad they keep putting people alone for a big long emotional song - but the songs are good and would excerpt for concertizing really really well.  All three of these submissions would play well in concert - and this is clearly a really talented team.

Sam Johnides
     Music, Book and Lyrics by Sam Johnides and Tony Gonzalez



Town reliving the same day over and over again because they’re marionettes.  (?)  Dialogue reads like translation: awkward.  Why are puppets frozen, and coming to life?  A “welcome to” song.  Lyrics formatted with / instead of returns.  Handwritten score — and we’re done here.

Claire McKenzie
     Book and Lyrics by Scott Gilmour, Music by Claire McKenzie



Scottish.  Half lady (no lower body).  Boy lost in the forest (or was he?). Lion Witch Wardrobe.  Highly competent team that knows what it’s trying to do.  Not QUITE getting there; but an exciting duo.



Oh, dear, Scott and I will both have to listen to this again.  I didn’t see as much in it as he did.

Maizy Broderick Scarpa
      Created by Clara Strauch & Maizy Scarpa



Noah’s ark story in small city with immigrants.  Initial book is naive and “who’ll play which part?” kind of intro, but once the story itself kicks in it’s convincing and captures immigrant/folk music/folk tale.  Mrs. Noah’s loss over child plays authentically  There’s no pdf — the composer performs at the piano (with great charisma); IS it annotated?  A problem for us if it’s not.  We could really help this team.



Interesting adaptation of the Noah story; very folksie/story theatre style.  Not sure what else this team would be capable of.

Nathan Jones
     Music by Nathan Rhys Jones. Lyrics by Géraldine Smits.



Grimm’s Robber Bridegroom.  Girl in woods, warned by crow.  Woodman, murderer.  Odd music, but jazzy, interesting.  This composer understands drama in lyrics; confident choices.  It’s orchestrated; does it work on piano?  More opera that musical theatre.  Going to be hard to find an audience for his voice initially, until he writes grand opera.  He’s Welsh; is she? Introduce to Angharad Lee?



Great music - but yes, could we do it justice in concert on piano?  Definitely opera.  Hard to excerpt.

Jack Williams
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Jack Williams and Freya Smith



Cynical and dour, strong POV  Happiness is just sadness that hasn’t happened yet.  Final moments of my life before I shoot myself.  British; he’s a former atty  no pdf.  Okay music, not up to the level of the book and lyrics.  I’d really like to nurture these guys; they have a unique, strong POV which doesn’t scare them to articulate.



Didn’t appeal to me as much as Scott.  I also appreciated the cynical POV but felt that it just didn’t land.  “Happiness” song was a lame shadow of Aunt Evelyn’s Inspirational Advice; Beer Googles not as funny as it thinks (and it would need to be funnier to avoid just being offensive)

Benedict Braxton-Smith
     Benedict Braxton-Smith - Music&Lyrics



Australian.  Ned Kelly, outlaw.  Kiki, who thinks she’s a superhero.  “Ride Free” — no progression in lyric, but exciting build in music.  It’s a screenplay, but interesting.  Moving song for Ned Kelly’s mother.  This guy looks like a pro.  (Though sloppy; witness the typo-capitalizing in his own name.)



Sloppy indeed - typos throughout script and score.  Music doesn’t acknowledge when she finally says she wants to be a super-hero - but that song could excerpt well.  The demo for mom’s moving song is awful with some poor woman shouting out Cs and Ds.

Alexander Gatherer
     Book, Music & Lyrics by Alexander Gatherer



Children’s ward/hospital in Wales.  Girl slitting wrists.  Obvious text, no subtext.  “We all have battle scars.”  Pro-hah-sody.  (Three mistakes in the very first phrase.)

Javon Ford
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Javon Ford



Ordering coffee from broken machine.  Song about star/eternity; another about “Ethereal Desire”

Prosody unbelievably awkward.  Lyrics don’t make sense grammatically.  Not a contender.  Book is stiff and “written” and doesn’t have conflict between characters.

Lia Rodriguez
     Book by Lia Rodriguez, Music by Jocelyn Chambers, Lyrics by Lia Rodriguez



19 year old from Texas.  Depression Era.  Earnest music and lyrics.  Slow-Tischy (vocal line with triplets, quintuplets, etc), but pretty good prosody.  Nice, quite.  Promising.  Last number has no pdf.

Alex Petti
     Book and Lyrics by Bradley Plaxen, Music by Alex Petti



GUTS — after the zombie apocalypse.  Underground bunker.  Orchestrated for rock band.  These guys look like the real deal.  (Although they submitted a 106-page script — can they follow directions?)



Loved the premise and the book.  HATED the music.  It had that repetitive sing song thing (in every song) that I’m hearing more and more these days that just makes me want to kill.

Ryan Korell
     Music by Ryan Korell, Book and Lyrics by Jonathan Keebler



Earning the Gay Card.  Narrated.  On the nose.  No POV, just statements.  Lyrics average.  Tisch, but music not as rhythmic as other Tisch.  Pass.

Richard Lindenfelzer
     Book and Lyrics by Richard Lindenfelzer, Music by Grant Carey

LOVED the song “Somewhere in the Stars” … looks like their score was “transcribed” … not so thrilled with the song within song.  They also uploaded their whole script and I didn’t read it.

Benjamin Turner
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Benjamin Turner



White bird flying outside the dome in Mars.  (memories of home; turns out it’s just trash in the wind.  Impossible-to-play right hand — 6 notes for 5 fingers.  Score incomplete, with mistakes.  But pretty music, interesting world with haunted book.  Lyrics serviceable.



Scores are partial with no lyrics; man sings impossibly high; rhyme is horribly sloppy.  (Scott: did you listen to the one about surgery in Mars?  Just not working for me.)


Wayne H. Holland, III
     Book, Words, & Music by Wayne H. Holland, III



Soviet 1917; cartoony assassination; Boris Badinov English.  Greg Franklin’s CPA.  Lyrics inverted to rhyme.  Bouncy music if pastiche-y (Wayne Moore-ish).   Mistakes in score (high D for tenor).



Fun old fashioned music - lyrics are trying hard to keep up but can’t; book is somewhat incomprehensible.

Lottie Fallis
     Lottie Fallis (Book, Music and Lyrics)



School for Whores.  mp3’s only (probably no score; composed in Logic?).  Ambitious music; hard to ascertain the book from the summary.  Lyric functional but TO___, not dialogue.

May-Elise Martinsen
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by May-Elise Martinsen



9-part webseries about a girl intern failing to get a job in an office; co-worker sings a cappella backstory.  Ballet sequence.  Earnest, but not funny, POV or interesting.  (1400 viewers of Episode 5, down to 350 for final episode.)

Rachel Bellman
     Book and Lyrics by Rachel Bellman, Music by Josh Bird



Black market rare flowers.  A lot of “left alone, she sings” but in between music and lyrics and book integrated and working together.  Music simple but the right ideas, though perhaps doesn’t capture the creepiness of the world as well as it could.  “They enter the greenhouse” — cinematic rather than theatrical.  Video doesn’t capture the creepy mood.  (Or am I imposing that creepiness on the piece, which perhaps doesn’t deliver it?)



Doesn’t feel to me like the reaction of the characters to their crime has any drama in it.  The songs are really long without progressing anywhere - found myself pretty bored.

Addison Peacock
     Book by Addison Peacock, Music and Lyrics by Alex Flanigan



3a.m. girlfriend crashes another gf’s apartment — let’s go on a road trip and live!  Breezy dialogue, but a single beat without growth.  Tischy lrics without the fun.  Music Tischy but under-realized.  Still — an all-woman team and it’s okay material.

Alex Koceja
     Music by Tekgoo Kang, Book and Lyrics by Alex Koceja



Living in an IKEA store.  Grad of Tisch, but so many problems with score (syllabification, enharmonics, beaming, clefs, repeat signs).  Dull lyrics; no progression; on the nose.  I would expect more from Tisch grads.



Yeah, promising possibilities - but falling short.  The lyrics are so close to being clever and funny but are constantly ruined by such bad settings.

Eliana Hood
     Lyrics by Eliana Hood



Upload incomplete, only a single document.  Lyrics are free verse poetry, not lyrics.

Jeffrey Derus
     Music and words by Jeffrey M. Derus and Tiffani N. F. Santiago



Wanted so much to like this submission, as he’s Matthew Ballestero’s bf, but dreadful lyrics, and nothing of a book.  Pretentious but ambitious music.  Computer ahhh on vocal line (from a Master Chorale singer, and bf of Matthew?)  Summaries are not well-thought out, and read as though we’re supposed to know the storyline already.

Polly Hilton
     Book and Lyrics by Polly Hilton, Music and Lyrics by Brian Dratch



Peter Pan as an angel.  First day of school.  Looking at stars (“Inwardly, he sings….”),  Adventure again.  Adults playing kids.  Music doesn’t sound like kids.  Not much Barrie left in this take, not much reason to do it.

Joe Howlett
     Music and Lyrics by Joe Howlett (with one piece including lyrics by Tom Holland)



Discussion between whiskey bottle and rum bottle.  Girl imagining living in NY, no, LA, no….

Music trying hard to be inventive and never-been-done-before, but result is distracting and attention-calling, and doesn’t support lyric.  Composer seems more interested in time signatures than in setting a lyric to be schmacted.

Lyrics are odd and forced.  (e.g., “fine beaches as far as the eye reaches”).

Ethan Cruxton
     Book by Ben Powell, Music by Ethan Cruxton, Lyrics by Ben Powell



England.  Roman Senators.  Rhyme dictating content.  Old-fashioned music (circa Elgar).  This guy writes like he’s 65-years old, poor chap.  Probably a fine MD one day, but not sure he’s a writer or composer.

Zach Spound
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Zach Spound



What’s Your Favorite Dinosaur (ALNM).  Epic fail picking up a girl in a bar.  Graphic artist creating “Jetpack Girl.”  Tischy music, poorly notated (ties).  Not keen on this guy, though his cume score is high.



I like this guy a lot - he has good theatrical instincts, fun music, and actually funny lyrics and great scenes.  I’d like to think we could have a really positive effect on somebody like this who makes such obvious “Tischy” mistakes in prosody, etc. - if we could get him to care more (dinoSAUR) I think he could really go far.

Billy Recce
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Billy Recce

13 - but 8 for book


Balloon Boy re the man who lied to the press that he launched his 5-year-old in a cardboard box under a weather balloon.  Book is good. Lyrics/prosody poor, and he is NOT a composer.

Spencer Robelen
     Music and Lyrics by Spencer Robelen



Songcycle “Awkward”. Transition from high school senior to adulthood.  “Nothing I do would interest you.” (swing).  No progression, but fairly interesting list.  “Going to the Mountains” — saying bye to family.  Music cenergetic, lyric runs out of gas.  Unconvincing rap: I don’t need your advice.  a (4) for book by averaging music and lyrics.

Ross Baum
     Music by Ross Baum, Book & Lyrics by Angelica Chéri



Woman “passing for white” doesn’t tell her fiance; can’t be with a black man.  (In the summary, they don’t tell us in what year the story takes place; that would make a huge difference to the story.)  Tischy score (literally).  Lyrics are meh (“hide under a cloud, hold our heads proud under a different sun.”)

Casey O’Neil
     Book & Lyrics by Marella Martin, Music by Casey O'Neil



Danny and the Rocket (sending rocket off, tribute to Grandma).  Yoga chanting in fifths.  Purging a boyfriend.


Book functional. Lyrics on the nose.  Music pretty.  Overwritten vocal arrangements.

Caitlin Turnage
     Book by Caitlin Turnage



Son and grandfather at tree with ribbons on their fingers, re wishes.  (Not saying out loud he wishes his father were still alive).  Second piece is very similar material:  son/dad fishing at a “lake” fearing a mythical goat-man and missing their wives.  Pseudo-Lori-Parks philosophy.  Typos.  Fakey emotion/thinking.  Nice ethos a la Padraic Duffy, but she’s not yet the “thinker” she thinks she is.  Her score of 12 is a little manufactured from a 4 for the book, because there’s no music/lyrics.

Daniel Sugimoto
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Daniel Sugimoto



A Trump-like character with a charismatic self-inflation song.  ALNM might like this song?  A show-within-a-noir-show about a poisoned girl singing with her last breath…not as over the top as its promise.  WWII internment camp — bad key for the girl.  Hard to score this entry…the first song is really good, the other two are underwhelming.

Recommend for a Tier Two.

No pdfs, mp3 only.



mp3 only for first song; pdfs for other two, but piano only, no lyrics.

I wasn’t as impressed by the first song as Scott - it has a nice bouncy rhythm but it wanders and doesn’t really land lyrically.

Chantelle Simons
     Chantelle Simons- Lyricist, Composer, Writer, basically everything.




Scary artistic statements (needy; crazed).  Terrible music, and terrible notation.

Danny Baird
     Book & Lyrics by Danny Baird, Music by Andrew Gordon



Two men in Rome, wooing, wanting to go back to Ireland.  Lyrics statis and literally repetitive.  Man/woman scene cliche lyrics, no conflict, not dramatic.  Third piece is a Talented Mr. Ripley set up (exactly).  Music is naive transcription (from Midi?; bad ties, unplayable hand span, etc.)  Bad prosody.  Pass.

Tim Parker
     Book and Lyrics by Tim Parker, Music by Edison Hong



Off-planet plant-centric society.  “Clip Ceremony”; Growing a “death seed.”  You don’t deserve such an awful blossom.  Summaries incomplete, so hard to follow the plant/human backstory.  Lyrics awkward; prosody; inversions for rhyme.  Production versus composition.  TO____.  But something interesting in the book and environment.



Pretty and haunting … but not enough to truly evaluate (only sound files - no book, no score). Pretty melodies but a bit rambling and repetitive.

Matthew Wexler
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Matthew Wexler



Deviant sex in Hell: lesbian demon being hit on by demon.  Necrophiliac pedaphile.  Spread your legs for Jesus.  Good book; really strong POV.  Sick and wild.  Not for everyone, but really well done.  Lyrics are funny.  Music is simple and pastichey, but it’ll do.



Didn’t appeal to me as much as to Scott - but I can’t do anything without demos regarding the music.  The “deviant” stuff was fun at first but then felt like it was just there for shock value and didn’t really MEAN anything.  So what if they were hitting on each other and having sex? WHY?  I didn’t see any purpose to it.  (And we certainly couldn’t do it in concert)

James Long
     Music Lyrics and Book by James Long



Adaptation of “Just William” (some book — are we supposed to know it?)  Lots of chatter in artistic statements about collaboration, but eventually submitted as a solo writer.  Ditto chatter re poor demos.  Interesting music, but not musical theatre=y.  Naive book (TO___; actors building set before our eyes).  Lyrics on the nose.  This composer could thrive with a collaborator…wonder what his non-solo efforts are like?

Jessica Penzias
     Music by Anthony De Angelis, Lyrics by Christyn Budzyna, Book by Jessica Penzias



A Vanillaville-like story of a grey town: The Prince and the Wooglefoof.  The foof is afraid of a shadow.  Fun scene.  But lyrics lazy rhyme and on the nose.  (It is children’s theatre…but there’s so much more can be done with the lyrics).  Some Malificent character turns out to be sweet.  Music is really fun, but lyrics and book aren’t playing in the same league.  Can we take just the composer?  (Can we match him with Laura Kleinbaum of Jeff Daye’s team?)



I clearly liked the book and lyrics a lot more than Scott.  Although I agree that I don’t actually like the project (I just read/heard more of it in a NAMT submission).  But I think this is a very talented (and well connected) team - and I’d like to see what they have that is NOT kid’s theatre.

Patrick Lazour
     Book by Patrick and Daniel Lazour, Lyrics by Patrick Lazour, Music by Daniel Lazour



Topic of Egypt 2011 is unusual and compelling.  But POV doesn’t seem clear (or informed?).  Prosody is awk; music is odd without being interesting.  Vocal score for piece #1 is vocal only; demo for #2 starts with singer in booth saying, “thank you.”  e.g., not quite a professional submission.  How did it get into O’Neill?

Andrew Barret Cox
     Andrew Barret Cox: Book, Music, Lyrics, Production



Emergency Ward/Club/Dance/costumes.  Typos!  (dging; ingisduise).  Bad rhyme.  Hard to follow setup.  No piano in score, just vocals.  Astrological symbols for character names.  Yikes.

Gabrielle Bacques
     Script by Gabrielle Bacques, Music by Tyler Forrest, Lyrics by Gabrielle Bacques and Tyler Forrest



Ideas in the book are rich.  Stuff is happening during the music.  Actual writing is not very good.  1929 Coal/Pittsburg.  No music pdf.  Bio of composer full of himself and name-dropping.  Script formatting terrible (Final draft).  Best thing about things about this submission are the bios and the outline, which show a lot of promise.  Worth looking deeper at this team — a poor submission from a team which can probably deliver something.

I’d advocate for them if we have a Second Tier.



The story - although interesting - something feels like several things I’ve heard before (there is a Les Miz quality to the whole thing).  There isn’t any real book as part of this submission; the lyrics are pretty lame; the music is lush and interesting although not particularly theatrical.  This might be a good composer to get involved with - although my guess is that he can’t create a score.

Simone Allen
     Book by Simone Allen and Ed Rosini, Music and Lyrics by Simone Allen



17 year old wants out of family home.  Sister’s back from college; he’s jealous of her freedom.  (Why is this homelife so awful?  Dad reminder of deadline for college application; Mom wanting him to take out the trash.  Poor you.)  Score’s pretty good if a little thin.  Book is not so good; lyrics are below-average and on the nose.

Ian Curran
     Book and lyrics by Ian Curran, Music by Simon Hanson and Peter Vint.



Sleeping Beauty; Wheel of Fortune with rocktrack and Evil Fairy 8vb.  No pdf (odd for a team which has a 45 year old on it).  First word is a typo (Iv never known….)  What a mess of a mixed metaphor cliche lyric.  Music is pretty but standard.


Two composers on this team — one is like 45 (working as MD for 20 years); the other 25 years his junior.  Hard to know whom we’d be evaluating.  Maybe talk to Simon (the elder composer) and see how much work is from the other two.  But only if there’s a Second Tier to assign them to.  I’m not very high on this team.

Rebekah Allen
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Rebekah M. Allen



Women’s issues.  Woman taking marijuana to enduce pregnancy from tonight’s akky hookup; other character lying of leukemia and not talking about it.  Wanted to be prom queen/Carrie.  Fun book and lyrics; music not at all up to level of book and lyrics.  Killing herself not finding a composer collaborator.  ALNM should know some of her songs.  Esp. “21”.



Great book. Music/lyrics formless/rhymeless - but still sometimes moving - especially Valentine.

Brayden Bergman
     Book, Music, and Lyrics by Brayden Bergman



High school girl pretending not to be struck by friend’s brother.  Great dialogue.  Less than ordinary music.  Second piece (River) more interesting musically.  Promising.  If we have a second tier, I might advocate for him.




A promising composer, I think - but these are angsty-all-alone songs that wind up all sounding the same.

Timothy Huang
     book, music and lyrics by Timothy Huang

I think he IS too old…but he doesn’t tell us how old he is, and leaves that up to us to find out?  I went to Wikipedia — by inference put him at 30+.

Patrick Ross
     Book by Patrick Ross, Music by Kimaya Diggs, Lyrics by Patrick Ross & Kimaya Diggs



Hillary the First — such a great idea for webseries.  Blues numbers when someone drops out, etc.  But, aww, not any FUN.  Literal lyrics, and meh music.  Too bad.

Jillie Mae Eddy
     Music & Lyrics by Jillie Mae Eddy; Books for "28," "SIRENS," and "The Girl from Bare Cove" by Jillie Mae Eddy



Shine a light/dream/see beyond/insert cliche lyrics next.  No pdf.  Lyrics obvious rhymes.  Guitar not appropriate to lyrics.  She doesn’t yet know what she’s doing.

Tug Rice
     Book Music & Lyrics by Tug Rice



The Monk. “He’s in Love” video; hard to hear lyrics, but it’s clearly funny to the audience.  Castle in Wales — again, can’t understand the lyrics.  Cheery music doesn’t match my memory of the moody novel.  Hard to evaluate based just on the videos.  Ask to see lyric sheets?

Kevin P. Joyce
     Book, Music and Lyrics by Kevin P. Joyce



Fisherman/mermaid from Oscar Wilde (cutting out his soul to give to her).  Music effective but simple and obvious.  Lyrics and dialogue imitative but not inaccurate.  Score poorly proofed and under-arranged.  Wish he were developing more…he’s stuck in basics, with a good ear but not very sophisticated skills.  Tier II — we could help this guy.



The simplistic sing-song quality of the music was really annoying to me - almost childish.  And I was probably more affected than I should have been by the wooden, awful performances of the actors on the demos.

Neal Herr
     Book, lyrics, music and arrangements by Neal Herr and Brent Sanders



Oedipus, TX.  Great solid premise, but writers don’t deliver.  Exciting summary, convincing overlay of Wild West; Jocasta as whore, Oedipus blinded in duel.  But lyrics are lazy and music is all about production, not composition.  NAMT would love this, but probably then not produce it.  Can we help this show?



Agree with Scott - great premise, so disappointingly doesn’t deliver (especially the eight-part group number).  And the horrible demo would make sure NAMT wouldn’t touch it.

Lynn B. Poe
     Book by Carter Jones, Music by Marvin R. Burton



Kids show about a turtle of some sort.  Vocal line only.  Awful prosody.  Pass.

Christopher Raymond
     Music and Lyrics by Christopher Raymond



DOMA’s MD.  No score or book submitted.  mp3’s from Dorian’s Descent.  We probably want to take him, not only to help him, but to get support from Marco?



Very telling that he didn’t submit any songs by the lead character - none of these are “plot” songs; his lyrics are generic poetry and his music has an old-fashioned pop sound but is well done and his demos as good.  With a better team he could do well.