Previews began Feb. 15 and the musical opened Feb. 26 for a run originally scheduled through March 26. [title of show] extended its engagement to April 9 following "strong audience and critical support, and record ticket sales following its Feb. 26 opening," according to production spokespersons.
Previously seen at the 2004 New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), the new run of the Jeff Bowen and Hunter Bell creation reunites the original cast and creative team. [title of show] — which follows two young writers (Jeff and Hunter) as they "race to write and submit a show to the theatre festival" weeks before the deadline — was born out of just that: Bowen and Bell's race to complete an entry for the aforementioned festival.
The musical — which features added material (continuing the musical's own journey following its previous run) — also includes two of the scribe's friends who were enlisted for this journey. Bowen (The Who's Tommy) and Bell (Oh, Boy!) star with Susan Blackwell (The Heidi Chronicles) and Heidi Blickenstaff (The Full Monty).
Tony Award nominee Michael Berresse (The Light in the Piazza, Kiss Me Kate) leads the original creative team as the director-choreographer and Larry Pressgrove (Cats, Children's Letters To God) who provides musical arrangements and direction.
They are joined by the design team which features Neil Patel (set), Chase Tyler (costume), Ken Billington and Jason Kantrowitz (lighting) and ACME Sound Partners (sound). "There's a lot of self-referential stuff out there," Berresse previously told Playbill.com (Sept. 2004) about the musical, "and I think that is born from that desire for creative people to find a more organic and less compromised outlet for their work. It's hard, especially for new writers in this industry, to feel like they can really follow their hearts and not have to cater and pander. That's why a lot of the really interesting stuff is born in small venues."
He continued, "What was so unique about the structure of this piece is that it has that silly irreverence and a lot of very funny inside stuff, but at heart I'm a very serious person and I really, really love this art form — and it's very obvious these guys feel the same way. They're very serious people who really adore it. It's not about making fun of the art form at all. It's about trying to remember what it is that makes it so unique, so special and so affecting."
Tickets for [title of show] at the Vineyard Theatre, 108 East 15 St. are on sale through (212) 353-0303 or online at www.vineyardtheatre.org.