Teen Spirit: Standardized Testing, a New Musical, Gets Philly Reading by Penn State Students | Playbill

News Teen Spirit: Standardized Testing, a New Musical, Gets Philly Reading by Penn State Students
Standardized Testing — The Musical gets heard in a Dec. 13 staged reading at Walnut Street Theatre's intimate second stage as part of Penn State University's NU Musical Theatre Festival.

The show, directed by Robert Schneider and written by Sam Willmott, plays 6 PM and 8 PM Dec. 13 at WST's Independence Studio on 3 in Philadelphia.

In the PSU NU Musical Theatre Festival, musical-theatre students have the chance to work with an established writer and director over the course of the fall semester and develop a new show from start to finish. The program gives students exposure to the processes and people in professional theatre.

Walnut Street Theatre, America's oldest theatre and most-subscribed theatre company, is playing host to these festival performances. (PSU is based in Stage College, PA, of course.)

According to PSU notes, "Standardized Testing — The Musical "is the story of eight eccentric teenagers who set out to prove their self-worth on the single biggest day of their entire academic lives. In the process, they create and destroy friendships, learn to express their individuality, and sing and dance their hearts out. The award-winning score encompasses a wide range of musical idioms, from funky rock to roof-raising gospel, from sparkling show tunes to sultry rhumba. Eat your balanced breakfast and get ready for a No. 2-pencil-tapping good time!"

Composer-lyricist-librettist Willmott wrote the mini-musical Scarlet Takes a Tumble (New York Theatre Barn at the Duplex). He is a member of the Drama faculty at the Harlem School of the Arts. His most recent work, Yo, Vikings!, a new musical featuring lyricist Marcus Stevens, was commissioned for the Upper Darby Summer Stage's 2010 Season and will receive an Off-Broadway workshop in November 2010. Admission is free. Reservations are recommended. Call Walnut Street Theatre at (215) 574-3550 ext. 545.

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