Hot Mess in Manhattan, Multi-Composer Musical With Jared Zirilli, DJ Bucciarelli and Cait Doyle, Begins Aug. 30

News   Hot Mess in Manhattan, Multi-Composer Musical With Jared Zirilli, DJ Bucciarelli and Cait Doyle, Begins Aug. 30
The second annual Araca Project, featuring six original shows, continues with the multi-composer musical Hot Mess in Manhattan, which begins performances Aug. 30 at the American Theater of Actors. 

Jared Zirilli and Cait Doyle
Jared Zirilli and Cait Doyle

Jared Zirilli (Lysistrata Jones, Off-Broadway's Fat Camp) and DJ Bucciarelli (Jesus Christ Superstar national tour) join conceiver/co-librettist Cait Doyle (San Francisco premiere of The Last 5 Years) in the production, which is directed by David Ruttura (Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark, Follies) and continues through Sept. 8.

The score of Hot Mess in Manhattan includes contributions from up-and-coming composers Adam Gwon (Ordinary Days), Kait Kerrigan and Brian Lowdermilk (The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown), Ryan Scott Oliver (Mrs. Sharp), Julianne Wick Davis (Southern Comfort), Gaby Alter (Band Geeks), Nick Blaemire (Glory Days), Sam Carner and Derek Gregor (Unlock'd), Ryan Cunningham and Joshua Salzman (I Love You Because), Drew Gasparini (Crazy, Just Like Me), Michael Mahler (How Can You Run with a Shell on Your Back?) and Keith Varney (I Got Fired!). Oliver, Gwon and Alter each received MAC Award nominations for Best Song for their contributions to previous incarnations of Hot Mess In Manhattan. The libretto is by Cait and Meggie Doyle.

The musical is billed as a "high-heeled, low-brow musical comedy following one 20-something woman trying to conquer the big city the only way she knows how: the Way of Carrie Bradshaw. Armed with a score featuring a dozen of musical theater's hottest new composers and one worn-out pair of Blahniks, she confronts her greatest fear: if 'Sex and the City' lied, then what's to become of a Hot Mess in Manhattan?"

Other members of the creative team include choreographer Joe Barros, musical director James Cunningham, scenic designer Andy Yanni, costume designer Meghan Gaber, lighting designer Cory Pattack and sound designer Jason Crystal.

Hot Mess in Manhattan is produced by Justin Nichols and David Brush in association with Greg Schaffert, New York Theatre Barn and The Araca Project.  For more information, visit


The 2012 Araca Project lineup also includes an improvised musical (One Night Only) and a musical/comedy variety hour (The Rescignos). Previously featured were Shawn Nabors' Cake, Phil Blechman's The Black Book and Seth Moore's The Man With America Skin.

All productions are produced by young professionals who graduated between 2002 and 2012.

Here's a glance at the remaining productions:

One Night Only
Sept. 11-15
Produced by Michael Girts
Directed by TJ Shanoff
Music direction by Mike Descoteaux
"The great Stephen Sondheim composed eight musicals in 31 years. Slacker. At One Night Only, the cast creates a brand new musical each night, complete with singing, dancing, rhyming, rapping and free play. These veteran Chicago improvisers use audience suggestions to create a 60-minute joyride that’s never been seen before – and will never be seen again." Visit

The Rescignos
Sept. 19-29
Produced by Paul Rescigno, Robbie Rescigno and Mike Hadge
Written by Paul Rescigno, Robbie Rescigno and Mike Hadge
Directed by Lisa Anne Porter and Nicole Ricciardi
"Donning sweater vests and each armed with a razor-sharp wit, Paul and Robbie Rescigno are like Cain and Abel, but with more singing and less fratricide. In The Rescignos, the titular twin brothers are joined by a talented ensemble of actors for a musical comedy show that hearkens back to an old-school television variety series, with contemporary material and brand-spanking new music. If 'old-school' feels redundant, we only need to remind you: they're twins. Redundancy is what they do best." Visit


The Araca Group is a Broadway producing and merchandising organization led by Matthew Rego, Michael Rego and Hank Unger. The Araca Project launched in 2011 as a collaboration between The Araca Group and Syracuse University. In its second incarnation, the project has welcomed the University of Michigan as a partner in The Araca Group's commitment to early career development.

The American Theatre of Actors is located at 314 W. 54th Street. For more information and tickets, visit

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