Pasek and Paul's Edges Gets Equity Bow in Albany with Hanlon and Alvin

News   Pasek and Paul's Edges Gets Equity Bow in Albany with Hanlon and Alvin Capital Repertory Theatre in Albany, NY, presents the professional premiere of Edges, a musical revue by young writers Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, Oct. 16-Nov. 4.

Gordon Greenberg directs the show, billed as "a delightful and soulful song-cycle of original compositions" that "confronts the trials and tribulations of four distinctly different 'twenty-somethings' and 'thirty-somethings' moving into adulthood."

Their search for work, love, commitment, identity and meaning is the meat of the show.

Larson Award winners Pasek and Paul began their collaboration as freshmen at The University of Michigan. Pasek and Paul are writers for the Disney Channel television series "Johnny and the Sprites" and contributed music to Off-Broadway's upcoming White Noise [A Cautionary Musical], which won Talkin' Broadway's 2006 Summer Theatre Festival Citation for Outstanding Original Score. Broadway stars have performed their work in sold-out shows at Joe's Pub and Ars Nova in New York City.

They were invited to participate in the first Johnny Mercer Songwriting Festival funded by the American Musical Theatre Project and are currently developing several original book musicals. At age 21, they were the winners of a 2007 Jonathan Larson Award, becoming the youngest recipients in the history of the foundation.

Justin Paul is the musical director of this professional premiere production of Edges. The show has previously been seen in university presentations. It has been revised since. The cast includes Stephen Booth (Las Vegas' Avenue Q), Colin Hanlon (Off-Broadway's I Love You Because), Whitney Bashor (Off-Broadway's current The Fantasticks) and Farah Alvin (Broadway's Nine, The Look of Love, Off-Broadway's I Love You Because and Paper Mill and Goodspeed's Pirates).

Director Gordon Greenberg (Happy Days: The Musical, Off-Broadway's Jacques Brel…) told Playbill.com, "I met Benj and Justin when a friend brought me to see their first New York concert at Joe's Pub last year. The energy in the room was amazing. At age 21, these guys already had a tremendous body of work, a great sound, and a huge fan club. Their music is highly accomplished — it honors theatre traditions but is clearly influenced by popular musicians like Ben Folds, John Mayer and Stevie Wonder — and contemporary theatre composers like Jason Robert Brown. I asked them to perform their own material at Ars Nova, and we soon struck up a friendship.

"They wrote the show we're working on now, Edges, when they were sophomores at University of Michigan. They put some of the music up on MySpace and Facebook, and within a few months it was being done at colleges all over the country and licensed by MTI [Music Theatre International]. The interesting thing is that they have managed to build the show's popularity in a totally new way. Rather than starting with a professional production and then licensing the show, they started by licensing the show enough to capture the attention of the professional world.

"We've been talking about the show for much of the past year, and they have rewritten more than half of it in that time. They have done phenomenal work in creating more defined characters and an overall arc to the show. All of the new material is wonderful, and the show is shaping up to be a small musical with a lot of charm, humanity and humor — and a score that feels fresh and truly exciting."

The creative for Edges includes set and costume designer Dane Laffrey, stage manager Liz Reddick, lighting designer Traci Kleiner, sound designer Christopher St. Hilaire and props master Kristi Sadowski.

Opening night is Oct. 17.

For more information call Capital Rep at (518) 445-SHOW (7469) or visit www.capitalrep.org.

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