Gay Grimms will kick off the new year of free readings at the Off-Broadway theatre company. With a book by Ted Sod, music by Dan Martin and lyrics by Michael Biello, the new musical, according to press notes, concerns "Jackie and Leon, the Cousins Grimm, adapting their ancestors’ beloved stories and adding a queer sensibility to them. The cousins learn a lot about themselves in the process; including revelations that provide a mysterious and surprising twist to their creative collaboration." The reading will be held Jan. 11 at 7:30 PM.
P. J. Barry's The Sheriff and Caputo will be presented Jan. 22 and 7:30 PM. The comedy-drama is described in this manner: "In a hospital, two enemies fight to live. Two women wait, pray, clash, deny. One man goes home."
At 3 and 7:30 PM on Jan. 29, Robert Grusecki (music and lyrics) and Anya Turner's (lyrics and book) Greetings From Yorkville will be offered. The new musical concerns "lovers, collaborators, partners in all things, a couple of songwriters from the Midwest [who] try to make it in the big city. Together they set out on the journey of a lifetime. Ultimately, this is a love story about trying again, and again, and again."
The late Clark Gesner penned book, music and lyrics for The Jello Is Always Red, which will be presented Jan. 30 at 7:30 PM. The work is a substantially revised version of Gesner's cabaret revue of the same name and will boast rarely-seen material from his other shows, all featuring his "uniquely funny and wise perspective on the world."
"It's Not What I Say. . .", which is billed as "The New Mae West Musical," will receive a reading on Feb. 20 at 7:30 PM. With music by Daniel Lanning and book and lyrics by Lanning and R. Bell, the musical is set in 1953 on the 60th birthday of the late performer: "[Mae West] has not made a movie in ten years and decides to go back to play writing, but this time she’s writing a musical… about herself, naturally. However, as she is busily musicalizing the 'sexsational' events of her life, Mae is once again faced with the danger of landing in jail." You Don't Know Jack is the title of a new musical by Jason Loffredo (music) and Jay Falzone (book and lyrics), which will be seen at the York Feb. 28 at 7:30 PM. "Mother Goose would have you believe that 'Jack & Jill' is just another harmless childhood nursery rhyme," read press notes. "Or is it just another fairy tale? As Mother Goose begins to compose the story of their lives, Jack and Jill long to escape Nursery Rhyme Land to live their own Happily Ever After. Their best friends, Bo Peep and Georgy Porgy, try to protect the couple, knowing all too well what a foul, tyrannical duck-tator Mother Goose can be. Accompanied by the famous jazz trio, The Three Blind Mice, these four friends sort through jealousies, fears, sexual indiscretions, and a political conspiracy involving one rather well-known Egg."
The York Theatre Company is located at Saint Peter's Theatre in Citigroup Center at 619 Lexington Avenue. Call (212) 935-5824, ext. 24 for reservations. Visit www.yorktheatre.org for more information.