Playwrights Horizons' FAR FROM HEAVEN, TheatreWorks' WHEELHOUSE and More Awarded NAMT Grants

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The National Alliance for Musical Theatre (NAMT) announces 15 awards granted from their National Fund for New Musicals, a major funding program to support NAMT member not-for-profit theatres in their collaborations with writers to create, develop and produce new musicals.  Now in its fourth year, the Fund will provide grants totaling $48,000 to 14 organizations across the country.

NAMT Executive Director Betsy King Militello stated, “We are honored to support our member theatres as they develop these exciting, innovative and provocative new musicals.  In the past four years, we have given out 45 grants totaling $205,000, all made possible by our generous funders including Stacey Mindich Productions, The Alhadeff Family Charitable Foundation and The ASCAP Foundation. These projects will join a growing list of important new musicals added to the canon with support from our National Fund for New Musicals.”

National Fund grants of $10,000 to support full productions have been awarded to:

Diversionary Theatre (San Diego, CA) for Harmony, Kansas by Bill Nelson and Anna K. Jacobs, with support from The ASCAP Foundation Irving Caesar Fund. This project previously received a NAMT Writers ResidenCy Grant in support of its time at Barrington Stage Company (MA). 
Playwrights Horizons (New York, NY) for Far From Heaven by Richard Greenberg, Scott Frankel and Michael Korie. Korie is an alumnus of NAMT’s 1989 Festival of New Musicals for Blanco.  
TheatreWorks (Palo Alto, CA) for Wheelhouse by Gene Lewin, Brendan Milburn and Valerie Vigoda, with support from Stacey Mindich Productions.  Milburn is an alumnus from NAMT’s 2011 Festival of New Musicals for Watt?!? and, along with Vigoda, for Striking 12 from the 2004 NAMT Festival. 

National Fund grants between $2,000 and $3,000 to support a workshop or reading have been awarded to:

American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University (Evanston, IL) for The Verona Project by Amanda Dehnert, with support from The Alhadeff Family Charitable Foundation. 
Center Theatre Group (Los Angeles, CA) for a new musical about urban superheroes by Matt Sax.
Dallas Theater Center (Dallas, TX) for Stagger Lee by Will Power, Justin Ellington and Daryl Waters
Weitzenhoffer School of Musical Theatre, University of Oklahoma (Norman, OK) for Something Wicked This Way Comes by Neil Bartram and Brian Hill, with funds contributed in honor of former NAMT Executive Director Kathy Evans.  Bartram and Hill are alumni from NAMT’s 2007 Festival for The Story of My Life.

This is the fourth year of grants awarded from the National Fund of New Musicals, a fund created by NAMT to help support every stage of development for new musicals. The recipients were selected by a distinguished panel, moderated by Gigi Bolt, the former Director of Theater and Musical Theater at the National Endowment for the Arts. The panelists were Nancy Barnett, theatre management consultant and former Managing Director of Florida Stage; Keith Cromwell, Executive Director of Red Mountain Theatre Co. in Birmingham, AL; Kent Gash, Director of NYU Tisch School of the Arts’ New Studio on Broadway and freelance director/writer; Stacey Mindich, Stacey Mindich Productions; James Nicola, Artistic Director of New York Theatre Workshop; and Kate Shindle, Broadway actress.  

Additionally, the National Fund for New Musicals has awarded $1,000 Writers ResidenCy Grants quarterly over the past year to the following organizations:  
Ars Nova (New York, NY) for Suprema by Jordan Harrison and Daniel Zaitchik.
Chicago Shakespeare Theatre (Chicago, IL) for Othello: The Remix by GQ and JQ (The Q Brothers).
Millikin University (Decatur, IL) for The Grid by Marisa Michelson and Frank Terry.
New York Theatre Barn (New York, NY) for Speargrove Presents by Sammy Buck & Brandon James Gwinn.
New York University-The Steinhardt School (New York, NY) for Pool Boy by Janet Allard and Nikos Tsakalakos.
Oregon Shakespeare Festival (Ashland, OR) for Elijah By Night by Shaina Taub.
Theatre Under The Stars (Houston, TX) for Love Like Crazy by Ryan Kennedy.
TheatreWorks (Palo Alto, CA) for La Ronde by Kait Kerrigan, Brian Lowdermilk, Chris Miller, Michael R. Jackson, Adam Gwon, Jenny Giering, Janine Nabers, Deb Stein, Dan Dietz, Lauren Gunderson and Peter Nachtreib. Gwon is an alumnus from the 2008 and 2011 NAMT Festivals for Ordinary Days and Bernice Bobs Her Hair, respectively.  Giering is an alumna from the 2005 NAMT Festival for Princess Caraboo.

The National Fund for New Musicals supported the development of recent musicals such as Giant by Michael John LaChiusa and Sybille Pearson at Dallas Theater Center, which will be at The Public Theater in New York next season; Southern Comfort by Julianne Wick Davis and Dan Collins at CAP21 in New York, which recently won the Larson Award and a GLAAD Media Award; Ordinary Days by Adam Gwon which is now licensed through Rodgers & Hammerstein after an Off Broadway run at Roundabout Theatre Co., among many others. 

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