Nikki M. James, Anthony Rapp, Wesley Taylor and More Create the 2013 24 Hour Musicals April 28-29 in NYC
By Michael Gioia
The 24 Hour Company teams up with Off-Broadway theatre company Exchange to create the fifth annual 24 Hour Musicals, where a team of nearly 100 artists cast, write, compose, direct, rehearse, tech and perform four original musicals in a 24-hour time period from April 28-29.
The event benefits the Exchange's summer retreat, The Orchard Project, which kick-starts innovative new theatrical work from around the world.
The musicals are written, cast, rehearsed and performed at The Gramercy Theatre over the course of a single day. Show time is April 29 at 8 PM.
The line-up of Broadway performers, stars from TV and film, composers and writers, directors, choreographers and musical directors includes singer-songwriter Ben Folds, Maulik Pancholy ("30 Rock"), Josh Lawson (House of Lies), Taran Killam ("Saturday Night Live"), Deirdre Lovejoy ("The Wire"), Tony Award winner Nikki M. James (The Book of Mormon), Anthony Rapp (Rent), cabaret artist Bridget Everett, Kristoffer Diaz (Chad Diety), Wesley Taylor ("Smash") Obie Award winner Lisa Peterson (An Iliad), Jonathan Marc Sherman (Clive), Alicia Witt ("Friday Night Lights," "Law & Order"), John Cariani ("Law & Order," Fiddler on the Roof), Brian Crawley (Violet), Sam Wilmott, Michael Lew, Julian Fleisher (Coraline), Rehana Mirza, Julie Reiber (Wicked), Patrick McRoberts (Miss Saigon), Steve Rosen (Spamalot, The Other Josh Cohen), Michael Winther (The Laramie Project), Ryann Redmon (Bring It On), Lance Horne, James Sampliner, Zachary Florence, Michael Patrick Walker (Altar Boyz) and Danny Goldstein (Godspell).
"This event produces enough adrenaline to power a normal person for at least a month. I can't wait for the rush — and I can't wait to see what these enormously talented people create," said Ari Edelson, the artistic director of the Exchange and the Orchard Project, in a previous statement. "I am beyond grateful to everyone volunteering a day to help theatre artists develop their next big ideas this coming summer at the Orchard Project."
According to the event's producers, "The creative team will arrive at The Gramercy Theatre at 9 PM on April 28 for a meet-and-greet. Each person brings a prop and a costume to inspire the writers. At 11 PM — after some singing, dancing, introductions, and 'don't do this at home' warnings — the actors and directors go get some rest and the composers and book writers get to work. Completed musicals — with at least two songs each — are due by 7 AM. In the morning, directors, choreographers, and actors arrive for rehearsals. After a supersonic tech (with lights, costumes and sound) in the late afternoon, the audience arrives. The unconventional time constraints create a tremendous amount of energy. Although actors have only one day create characters, learn blocking, music and choreography, the musicals are performed without scripts in hand. The show starts at 8 PM, with an open bar courtesy of Monsieur Touton Selection and Diageo and VIP dinner from the wonderful new restaurant County, followed by an VIP after party at the Gansevoort Park Avenue Hotel."
The 24 Hour Musicals was the subject of a recent documentary, "One Night Stand," which premiered in January and which is currently running at The Quad Cinema in New York City. For more information, visit OneNightStandTheMovie.com.
The Gramercy Theater is located at 127 E 23rd Street. Tickets for the gala are $115-$500 and all include admission to the show and open bar at the Gramercy Theater. For more information and tickets, click here.
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