Children from Puerto Rico's Palmas Academy will rage against the storm that severely damaged their school by performing a new, original musical at the Beacon Theatre in New York City, April 26-30, but first there is a starry preview on TV's "Rosie O'Donnell Show."
Questionable Quest is billed as a Medieval-flavored romance with futuristic flourishes written by Cinda Fox (book and lyrics) and 12-year old composer and Palmas student William Fox.
Young Fox will appear on "Rosie" April 25. O'Donnell will interview the songwriter, and Broadway and recording artist Billy Porter will perform Fox's "There's Got to Be a Way," from the new musical.
The New York City benefit performances, to raise money to rebuild the model school, Palmas, which was damaged in 1998 by Hurricane Georges, will feature 36 students aged 8-15, and a 14-piece Salsa band. Students previously raised more than $100,000 by presenting another Fox musical, Relatively Speaking. Fox began writing songs for the current show when he was 8.
Elliott Taubenslag, a U.S. children's theatre artist, will direct. Waldo Gonzales choreographs. Karen Schwartz is musical director. Nemesio Canchani is scenic designer.
Palmas Academy was created in 1992 by parents who wanted to mix high academic standards with the desires of their children. Arts is stressed in the model school, which has 267 international students (hailing from Canada, Cuba, Switzerland, Germany and elsewhere) in kindergarten to grade 10.
Tickets for Questionable Quest are $10-$45. The Beacon Theatre is at 2124 Broadway at 74th Street. For information, call (212) 307-4100 or (212) 840-4400 (groups).
-- By Kenneth Jones