The 24 Hour Musicals, which marks the 24th anniversary of The 24 Hour Plays, is presented June 17 at 8 PM on the Irene Diamond Stage at the Pershing Square Signature Center. The evening features four new musicals that were written within the span of 24 hours.
Artists include performers Aya Cash, Solea Pfeiffer, Tamara Tunie, Erich Bergen, Clifton Duncan, Isabelle Fuhrman, Noah Galvin, Joel Marsh Garland, Montego Glover, Jessica Hecht, Atandwa Kani, Richard Kind, Leslie Kritzer, Bonnie Milligan, Anthony Rapp, Dee Roscioli, and Sarah Steele; directors Sammi Cannold, Oliver Butler, Shira Milikowsky, and Taylor Reynolds; librettists Kristoffer Diaz, Dave Harris, Lily Houghton, and Christopher Oscar Peña; and composers Mike Doughty, Toshi Reagon, LOLO, and Nellie McKay.
“The 24 Hour Plays and The 24 Hour Musicals are a delivery system for joy,” said Executive Director Mark Armstrong, “and for 24 years, this organization has brought together extraordinary artists around the world to make singular evenings of theatre in 24 hours. From raising millions of dollars for charities, to launching significant careers through our professional development initiatives for young artists, our work shows what communities can do when they come together. We’re celebrating 24 years of work that’s touched everyone from celebrities to students and looking ahead to the next 24 years.”
The marathon process begins at 9 PM the night before the performance. Performers and creators gather for an orientation where they share costume pieces and props, their special skills, and reveal something that they have always wanted to do onstage. At 11 PM, composers and writers get to work crafting 15-20 minute musicals, and at 9 AM the next morning, actors receive their roles and directors, choreographers, and musicians arrive to begin rehearsal. Less than 12 hours later, the performance begins.
Proceeds benefit The 24 Hour Plays’ programs, including The 24 Hour Plays: Nationals (a professional intensive for young artists) and help support the organization’s ongoing non-profit work, including partner productions around the world.