New Musical History of War, With Max von Essen, Begins Limited Run Oct. 8

News   New Musical History of War, With Max von Essen, Begins Limited Run Oct. 8
Chip Zien, who created the role of the Baker in the original Broadway production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods, has penned the book for the new musical The History of War, which makes its debut Oct. 8 as part of the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

Max von Essen
Max von Essen

History of War, which features music by Deborah Abramson and lyrics by Amanda Yesnowitz, plays the Chernuchin Theatre-American Theatre of Actors.

Nick Corley directs a cast headed by Max von Essen (Xanadu tour; Les Miserables) as Alexander the Great with Paul Kandel, Jason Kravits, Sophie Hayden, Jim Walton, Christopher Gurr, William Michals, Herman Sebek, Eric Poindexter, Andrew Pandaleon, Robbie Tann and Michael D'Addario as 12-year-old Manfred. The creative team also includes musical director Brian Usifer and choreographer Darren Lee.

The History of War, according to production notes, is "spun from the imagination of a 12-year-old boy — a megalomaniac in training. As he struggles with homework assignments and peculiar visions, he conjures up seven of the most famous tyrants of all time. They did horrible things. He wants to do horrible things. His parents are worried. ...and everybody sings! ... well, almost everybody. Reality and pathology neatly converge in this terrifyingly subversive new musical."

The production features scenic design by James Maloof, costume design by Gail Baldoni, lighting design by Jeff Croiter, sound design by Brandon Wolcott and projection design by Kate Freer and Dave Tennant of Room 404 Media. Donald Butchko is the production stage manager.

Show times are scheduled for Oct. 8 at 7 PM, Oct. 9 at 1 PM, Oct. 12 at 8 PM, Oct. 15 at 7 PM and Oct. 16 at 1 PM and 5 PM.

Chernuchin Theatre-American Theatre of Actors is located at 314 West 54th Street. Tickets, priced $20, are available by visiting For more information visit

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