Friday, January 30, 2009

Academy for New Musical Theatre to offer preview of new musicals

On Monday, February 9th at the Colony Theatre in Burbank, the Academy for New Musical Theatre will present Got Musical!, a sneak preview of seven brand-new musicals in development for producers across the country, giving an insight into the Academy's process for creating new musicals from scratch specifically for producers and theatre companies.

Musicals currently in development which will be showcased at this event include a traditional musical based on a classic Shaw play, a goofy all-cow revue, a cutting-edge cyberspace musical, an experimental take on an Ibsen play, and an enchanted evening based on tales of the Great Lakes shipping industry, among others.

'You don't have to be in Los Angeles to benefit from our process,' says ANMT Executive Director Scott Guy. 'We╩╝ve developed many shows long-distance utilizing internet technology and our digital equipment, including shows with writers based in London and Berlin.'

One of these "long-distance" shows is Miss Vulcan 1939 which the Academy developed for the Red Mountain Theatre in Birmingham, Alabama.

"Red Mountain was so happy with that process that they have produced that show two years in a row," says Guy, "and they're planning to remount it again next year.'

Guy explains that the ANMT development process is fairly simple: the producer generates or approves an idea; the creative team creates a paragraph-sized version, then a half-dozen-page version, and eventually a 15-minute first pass. At this point, the producer either shuts down the project, or agrees to produce a public reading of the work.

If a producer approves of the project after the first 15-minute pass, the Academy supports table readings and workshops of the work, nurturing it through first draft. Then, the producer produces a public reading of the work at his expense. After the producer has fulfilled his obligation by producing the reading, he is under no obligation to produce the musical; but if he does produce the musical, the Academy expects the producer to do so under terms approved by the Dramatists Guild.

'We've found this to be a win-win situation for the writer and for the producer,' says Associate Artistic Director Elise Dewsberry, 'and we're excited to share this funny, artful and stimulating evening and showing off our innovative business model for developing new musicals for independent producers and theatre companies.'

Got Musical! takes place at 7:30pm on Monday, February 9th at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. Tickets are $10. For more information, and to make a reservation, please visit and click on Got Musical!

Academy for New Musical Theatre, 5628 Vineland Avenue, North Hollywood, CA, 91601

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