The retreat began Jan. 16 and will continue through Jan. 23 at TheatreWorks' Mountain View home. A Jan. 24 presentation will feature selections from each of the developing works.
Playwright Kara Lee Corthron (Holly Down In Heaven, Julius By Design) and composer-lyricist) Justin Levine (Bonfire Night) are working together on a musical commission for Naked Angels Theatre Company, which staged the Tony Award-nominated play Next Fall.
Singer David Clement and playwright Kate Moira Ryan (It's Jewdy's Show) are collaborating on Weatherman, which is described as "a rock musical focusing on 6 months (1969-70) in the increasingly tumultuous history of the radical anti-Vietnam organization, The Weather Underground, as they escalated from college campus protests to a declaration of war on the United States." The work was previously developed at the La Jolla Playhouse in 2009.
Composer Marisa Michelson (Still Life with Toe Shoes, Hotel Sarajevo) and playwright Jason Grote (1001, Maria/Stuart) are developing Scheherazade, which "hyperlinks the ancient tales of '1,001 Arabian Nights' with the culture clashes of the 21st century to explore the ways in which narratives shape our lives."
The final work in development is The Light Princess, with music and lyrics by Mike Pettry (The Time Travelers Convention) and a book by playwright Lila Rose Kaplan (Wildflower). Based on the short story by George MacDonald, the musical tells "the whimsical tale of a princess cursed at birth to lack gravity, both physical and emotional. The King and Queen must find the Princess' gravity before her 16th birthday, else the kingdom will fall into the hands of the Witch who cursed her." Visit TheatreWorks.