The 32nd Annual National Alliance for Musical Theatre Festival streams November 19–20, with eight musicals presented during the virtual showcase. The works range from an opera set during the Salem witch trials to a musical about a boy who has green lizard skin.
The presentation is available to view on Broadway on Demand in the U.S. at 3:30 PM ET and Streaming.Theatre in the U.K. at 7:30 PM GMT with the option to watch on-demand through November 29.
In the past, the festival has been the starting point for over 268 musicals, including Broadway hits like Come From Away and The Drowsy Chaperone. As announced in September, the festival is being presented virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This year’s presentations are overseen by NAMT New Works Director Ciera Iveson and Festival General Manager Dailey-Monda Management.
The year’s edition includes Co-Founders, with a book and lyrics by Beau Lewis, Adesha Adefela, and Ryan Nicole, and music by Jodie Ellis, Brian Watters, and Budo. The musical follows two unlikely partners, a Black woman from Oakland and a small-town college dropout, as they take on the most competitive startup accelerator in Silicon Valley.
Next in the lineup is Cowboy Bob, co-created by Molly Beach Murphy, Jeanna Phillips, and Annie Tippe, with music and lyrics by Phillips, a book and additional lyrics by Murphy, music direction and additional music by Alex Thrailkill, and Tippe directing. In this tuner, the small-town legend of a Texas bank robber spurs a waitress to take life by the reins.
The Consoling Mechanism, with a book, music, and lyrics by Josh Franklin and music direction by Meg Zervoulis, follows a family struggling to recover from unexpected loss in a world increasingly intertwined with artificial intelligence and virtual reality.
The lineup also includes Eastbound, with music by Cheeyang Ng, lyrics by Khiyon Hursey, a book by Ng and Hursey, and music direction by Nate Hopkins. Desdemona Chiang directs this bilingual musical about two brothers from opposite sides of the world and their quest for survival.
Next up is Hart Island, with a book and lyrics by Michelle Elliott, music and lyrics Danny Haengil Larsen, and music direction by Jason Yarcho, about an immigrant woman fighting for her child and the inmate who is the only person who can help her.
Lizard Boy, with a book, music, and lyrics by Justin Huertas, is about Trevor, who grew green lizard skin after a childhood accident, and the journey that makes Trevor decide if he’ll become the hero of his own story. Brandon Ivie directs.
Also in the lineup is Obeah Opera, with a book, music, and lyrics by Nicole Brooks. This a cappella opera featuring an all-female cast tells the story of the Salem witch trials from the perspective of a Caribbean slave woman.
Lastly, the festival will host On This Side of the World, with music and lyrics by Paulo K Tiról and music direction by Steven Cuevas. Developed and directed by Noam Shapiro, the musical gives voice to Filipino immigrants navigating new lives.