Hello Out There, Musical About Teen Securities Crooks, Premieres Upstate with Liz Larsen
By Kenneth Jones
Tony Award nominee Liz Larsen plays a government investigator in the world premiere of Hello Out There, the musical about three teens who commit securities crimes, at Adirondack Theatre Festival, July 21-30.
Larsen (1992's The Most Happy Fella, plus Broadway's Hairspray, Starmites, Damn Yankees) plays S.E.C. Investigator Wendy Eikenberry, and is joined by Alex Brightman (Glory Days, Wicked), F. Michael Haynie and Emma Galvin (as the story's three teens) and Carol Linnea Johnson (Mamma Mia! on Broadway and in Las Vegas), Frank Vlastnik (A Year With Frog and Toad) and Brian Munn (Wicked).
Hello Out There is by Eric Price (book and lyrics) and Frank Terry (music), with direction by Benjamin Endsley Klein. The writers are alumni of the Tisch NYU graduate musical theatre writing program.
Here's how ATF in Glens Falls, NY, bills Hello Out There: "If greedy Wall Street bankers can act like children, why can't children act like Wall Street bankers? Hello Out There is a musical comedy about three teenagers who spend their summer vacation committing securities fraud over the Internet. Inspired by the true story of the first minor ever prosecuted by the S.E.C., the show introduces a trio of unlikely friends who become both rich and empowered by creating an ingenious and unprecedented online stock market scheme. But when an immigrant taxi driver loses his life savings because of it, he alerts the authorities and what was initially a high-flying summer for the teenagers turns upside down as the S.E.C. chases the teens across the Internet, through the New Jersey suburbs, and all the way to Wall Street."
ATF's Fleischer told Playbill.com, "I first read Hello Out There while serving on the National Alliance for Musical Theatre's Festival Committee. While its correspondence to the recent financial crisis and youthful energy were factors which initially hooked me, it was Eric and Frank's exploration of universal questions about coming of age, accepting responsibility and friendship which made me a committed fan of not just the piece, but the writing team."
He added, "Out of more than 100 [NAMT] submissions, Hello Out There was one of 20 finalists. When it wasn't chosen as one of the eight shows for the festival, I still believed this was a show that deserved attention. I wanted to provide the team opportunity to continue developing the show and see it in production. This is something ATF has a history of doing, and after meeting with Eric and Frank, they entrusted their show's development and premiere to ATF."
Hello Out There has choreography by Wendy Seyb (Toxic Avenger and The Pee-Wee Herman Show) and music direction by Andrew Gerle (a busy composer in his own right).
The production team is Caleb Levengood (sets), Joel Silver (lighting), David Kaley (costumes), Holly Breuer (properties) and Alix Claps (production stage manager).
ATF's home is the Charles R. Wood Theater, 207 Glen Street, in downtown Glens Falls, NY. For tickets and information, call (518) 874-0800 or visit ATFestival.org.
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