Veteran director Mark Brokaw is the artistic director for the Institute, a joint venture between the Yale School of Drama and the Yale School of Music that aims to develop the work of graduate and recent post-graduate students. Each musical receives a two-week workshop culminating in a free reading for the public. The rehearsal process began June 7.
The first musical reading presented will be Invisible Cities, with a score and libretto by Christopher Cerrone, on June 19 at 4 PM. The cast features Stephen Salters (Kublai Kahn), Tracy Wise (Marco Polo), Amelia Watkins (Woman 1), Abigail Fischer (Woman 2), Amanda Hall, Joe Mikolaj, Elizabeth Picker and Vince Vincent, under the direction of Robin Guarino.
"In Invisible Cities," press notes reveal, "Kublai Khan, sensing that the end of his empire is imminent, looks to young explorer Marco Polo to prevent the fall. Instead, Polo recounts stories of his many journeys — to far-reaching lands and through the landscape of his memory — illuminating why the fall of Kahn's empire is inevitable."
Following will be POP!, featuring book and lyrics by Maggie-Kate Coleman and music by Anna K. Jacobs, on June 20 at 12:30 PM. Mark Brokaw directs a cast including Hannah Corrigan (Valarie), Luther Creek (Andy Warhol), Brynn O'Malley (Viva), Kristen Paige (Edie), Ken Robinson (Ondine), Brian Charles Rooney (Candy) and Paul Anthony Stewart (Gerard).
"POP! re-imagines the events leading up to the shooting of Andy Warhol as a pop-art murder mystery show, with his New York Factory cohorts taking on the roles of stock detective film characters. With Candy Darling, the beautiful pre-op transsexual, acting as hostess, the artist is confronted by his relationships, his art, and perhaps his greatest creation: Andy Warhol," according to Yale. The final work will be Cancer? The Musical, featuring book, music and lyrics by Sam Wessels, on June 20 at 4:30 PM. Joe Calarco directs a cast including Daniel Binstock (Sam), Patty Goble (Mom) and Christopher Shyer (Dad), as well as Danielle Frimer, Douglas Hummel-Price, Emily Jenda and Jason Reiff.
"About to graduate from college, intrepid Sam had a lot in front of him," read the Cancer? press notes. "He had an acting career to start, musicals to produce, and the mysteries of adulthood waiting to uncover. Then for a graduation gift, he got leukemia. Cancer? the musical is an ingenious, funny, heartfelt, and unsentimental depiction of Sam's roller-coaster ride through the first dizzying nine months of his diagnosis and treatment — and how the cure ended up transforming his life long after the cancer itself was gone."
The Yale Institute for Music Theatre readings will be held at the Off-Broadway Theatre (41 Broadway, New Haven, CT). For reservations e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.