Stephanie D'Abruzzo, Jay Thomas and More Will Rock NYMF Musicals

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18 Jun 2014

As part of Playbill.com's ongoing coverage of the New York Musical Theatre Festival 2014, take a look below at some of the upcoming shows, news items and headlines we're featuring as part of the "Best of the Fest" before the opening ceremonies July 7.



Check out four of these awesome, cutting-edge, funny and touching new musicals premiering all over New York as part of the 2014 New York Musical Theatre Festival honorarily chaired by Tony Award-winning director Jack O'Brien. O'Brien said of the festival, in a statement, " [NYMF is] the very font of creativity currently nurturing our stages and our industry with a nearly unbroken series of exciting, promising works. No one sings out quite like NYMF...long may she wave!"

NYMF launches July 7 and runs through July 27 at several locations throughout New York City. 

Tickets, exact performance venues, times and more information are all available at nymf.org.

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Academia Nuts
Book and Lyrics by Becca Anderson and Dan Marshall
Music by Julian Blackmore
Directed by Thomas Caruso July 9-13

"It’s the National High School Quizbowl Championship! Dreamy-eyed brainiac Maggie McCutter hopes to win a scholarship so she can escape her controlling mother. Maggie’s world is hilariously turned upside down when she falls for Tyler O'Neil, a football-loving opponent from rival team, the Walla Walla Walruses. As she's torn between the family she’s got and the friendship she's found, will Maggie’s trivial pursuits be in jeopardy? Academia Nuts is the uproarious nerd-rock musical everyone will be buzzing about!"

Featuring Alyse Alan Louis (Mamma Mia!), Alison Lea Bender, Todd Cerveris (South Pacific; Twentieth Century),Stephanie D'Abruzzo (Avenue Q), Khris Davis, Alexander Ferguson, Melody Madarasz,  Will Roland (The Black Suits) and Jennifer Simard (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee; Shrek; Sister Act). 

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Somewhere With You
Book by Peter Zinn
Music and Lyrics by JT Harding
Directed by Peter Zinn
July 8-13

"Somewhere With You is a compellingly gritty, coming-of-age love story centering around a new generation of Southerners growing up in the early 2000s, confronted by the methamphetamine epidemic, the War in Iraq, and other post 9/11 challenges in the rural South. A country soundtrack of hits and new songs accompanies this engaging storyline from songwriter JT Harding (including Chesney’s number one song “Somewhere with You” and Uncle Kracker’s “Smile”). While Somewhere With You centers around a love story between an aspiring country music singer and a recovering Meth addict, it is also one of the first to chronicle the experience of US soldiers based in Iraq in the early 2000s. The production captures the unique challenges, isolation, and emotional despair military members experienced during those initial tours in Iraq and continue to experience today in Afghanistan."

Featuring Emmy-nominated actor Jay Thomas ("Cheers," "Murphy Brown") Graham Scott Fleming , Katy Frame, Andrew Rothenberg,  Anna Grace Barlow, Lauren Hoffmeier, Jonathan Judge-Russo, Joshua Wiles and Ashley Arnett.
 

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Wikimusical
Book and Lyrics by Frank Ceruzzi and Blake J. Harris
Music by Trent Jeffords
Directed by Richard J. Hinds
July 18-26

"WikiMusical is a hilarious new musical satire of the virtual age. It tells the epic tale of two estranged brothers, Peter and Kurt Oglesby, who return to their childhood home for Christmas Eve and, through a series of mysterious events, are magically zapped inside the Internet. But getting back to reality isn’t as simple as clicking on the right hyperlink; the brothers must put aside their differences and come to terms with their pasts in order to save the future. Along the way, they will need to rely on help from allies like the Cuddly Kittens (who may or may not have created the Internet), a cowardly Emoticon (who is searching for his long lost love, Princess LOL), and an omniscient Narrator (who may or may not be Morgan Freeman). WikiMusical is a quintessential quest story, inspired by such classics as "The Wizard of Oz," "Alice and Wonderland" and "The Phantom Tollbooth." Add a dash of "Tron" and a sprinkling of "Super Mario Bros." and you have a show that explores the ways in which our obsession with the virtual world has affected our ability to live in the real one. The show’s hip and memorable pop score is firmly rooted in musical theater." 

Featuring Brenda Braxton, Jason C. Brown, Trey Harrington, Michael Mahany), Noah Marlowe, Alison Novelli, Heather Jane Rolff, Lucas Schultz, Barry Shafrin, Adam B. Shapiro, Perry Sherman and Bob Walton.

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Deployed the Musical
Book, Music and Lyrics by Jessy Brouillard
Directed by Mindy Cooper
July 16-22

"With a soaring pop rock score and set against the epic backdrop of a military base in Baghdad, Deployed follows Emily's emotional journey. Our heroine develops an unlikely friendship with her interpreter, Laila, as she trains Iraqi women. Laila teaches Emily to appreciate others’ suffering and to realize the enemy she’s fighting is herself. When Emily finally lets go of her inner demons, a secret from the past comes back to wreak its revenge. They cannot forget...but can they forgive?"

Featuring Natalie Toro, Ashanti J’Aria, Kyle Robert Carter, Hanna Rose DeFlouri, Erik A. Gullberg, John D. Haggerty, Collin Lyle Howard, Adam Hyndman, Anna Lise Jensen, Clayton Jones, Janice Landry, Bryant Martin and Nina Negron.