Amber Ruffin & Kevin Sciretta's BIGFOOT & More Set for New York Stage And Film 2024 Summer Season

The season will star Heidi Blickenstaff, Miguel Cervantes, Drew Gehling, Justin Guarini, and more.

By: May. 06, 2024
Amber Ruffin & Kevin Sciretta's BIGFOOT & More Set for New York Stage And Film 2024 Summer Season
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New York Stage and Film has unveiled its 2024 Summer Season at Marist College, kicking off this July in Poughkeepsie, NY.

For 39 years, NYSAF has operated as a vital incubator for artists and their work, a catalyst for stories that continue across the country and around the world. This summer, those artists include Jim Dale, Margaret Cho, Leigh Silverman, Seonjae Kim, Leah Nanako Winkler, Amber Ruffin, David Schmoll, Kevin Sciretta, Brant Russell, Jaki Bradley, the band Delta Rae, Logan Vaughn, Kate Walbert, Sheryl Kaller, Shanessa Sweeney, Bongi Duma, Ray Mercer, Rufus Bonds Jr., Ngozi Anyanwu, Stacy Osei-Kuffour, Kate Douglas, Kate Whoriskey, Kait Kerrigan, Anne & Ian Eisendrath, Christopher Ashley, Adam Chanler-Berat, Grace McLean, Tyler Thomas, Zack Fine, Bryce Pinkham, Kirya Traber, Rona Siddiqui and many more.

Initial casting for the summer season includes Mark Linn-Baker, Kyle Beltran, Heidi Blickenstaff, Miguel Cervantes, Stephanie Crousillat, Drew Gehling, Justin Guarini, Jessica Hecht, Marin Ireland, Gizel Jimenez, Jay Armstrong Johnson, Taylor Iman Jones, Okieriete Onaodowan, Zachary Noah Piser, Erica Swindell, and Wren Rivera, with more to be announced shortly.

With artist-driven flexibility, NYSAF offers resources and opportunities to meet projects at every step of their development. Its Summer Season supports the nation's leading generative artists and boldest creators of innovative and groundbreaking stories for the stage and the screen. In collaboration with Marist College in New York City and Poughkeepsie, NYSAF serves the needs of theater and film artists today with a rigorous and nurturing environment that centers process, community, education, and audience engagement.

All performances will be held on Marist's Poughkeepsie, NY campus. Tickets for the presentations go on sale in June. For more information and to purchase season bundles, Season Kick-Off VIP Reception access, individual tickets, and access to special events visit  

“This is a remarkable time to be supporting storytellers and their new works,” said Interim Artistic Director Liz Carlson, “especially those who are mining the depths of their curiosities and quandaries of the world with the rigor and heart of the 2024 Summer Season community. This year, we invite our audiences to embrace challenging questions, unrelenting dreams, and tremendous joy in these developing stories that are bound to make an imprint on our vast and complicated culture. We look forward to welcoming our entire community to Marist's riverfront campus once again.”

The 2024 Summer Season at Marist will begin with the Season Kick-Off VIP Reception on July 18 preceding the presentation of Jim Dale: Living with Laughter. Attendees will enjoy an exclusive performance by NYSAF artists and raise a glass to NYSAF and Marist College's shared commitment to development, dialogue, and discovery. The Reception will also acknowledge supporters for impactful programming, including the development of a new Artist-in-Residence initiative during the upcoming school year, early-career Apprenticeships, and Marist College's Summer Pre-College Program.

The New York Stage and Film 2024 Summer Season is as follows:


Written and Performed by Jim Dale

Presentation: Thursday July 18, 7PM | Nelly Goletti Theatre

VIP Reception: 5:30 PM in Symphonic Hall

LIVING WITH LAUGHTER will give the audience the gift of time with Jim Dale, who John Simon noted “may just be the most charming farceur to tread the boards, to say nothing of his brilliant recorded readings of the seven Harry Potter novels, in which he manages a different, equally splendid voice for all two hundred plus characters. But let's get back to charm. This usually comes with high comedy a la Noel Coward or Cary Grant, it almost never comes with unabashedly low or middle-range farce, dazzlingly elevated to the heights attained by Jim, as he holds you in his palms, his feet, his whole body leaving you wallowing in laughter. LIVING WITH LAUGHTER is essentially Dale's telling and reenacting of his life and stage story, from Britain's beloved Music Hall and beyond it to every possible medium, including Shakespeare and Molière, displaying terrific timing and those oodles of charm which only inborn talent and hard work lightly worn can attain. It is impossible to impart all this through mere printed words; you must catch and experience the show firsthand. What you see and hear will stay with you as a touchstone for as long as you are capable of joyous remembrance.”

Prior to the presentation, there will be an exclusive VIP Reception with Jim Dale and the NYSAF artistic community, that will raise a glass to NYSAF and Marist College's shared commitment to development, dialogue, and discovery. The Reception will also acknowledge supporters for impactful programming, including the development of a new Artist-in-Residence initiative during the upcoming school year, early-career Apprenticeships, and Marist College's Summer Pre-College Program.


Written & Performed by Margaret Cho

Additional Material by Leah Nanako Winkler

Co-Directed by Leigh Silverman & Seonjae Kim

Presentation: Friday July 19, 7PM | Fusco Recital Hall                

In MOMMY, A ONE WOMAN CHO, Grammy and Emmy Award nominated stand-up comedian, actress, and singer-songwriter Margaret Cho depicts all of the things she wishes her mother had actually said. This is a work of fiction.


By Brant Russell

Directed by Jaki Bradley

Presentation: Saturday July 20, 3PM | Fusco Recital Hall               

When Erik crashes Erika's engagement party, she's reminded of why she quit drinking in the first place. WELL WELL WELL follows two people who try to live together, try to live apart, and try to live with their changing relationships to the world and substances around them. What's the difference between love and enabling? What's the difference between a choice and an addiction? 


By Delta Rae

Directed by Logan Vaughn

With a special performance by Delta Rae: Saturday July 20, 7PM | Nelly Goletti Theatre

THE NINTH WOMAN is a new musical experience that transports you into the heart of a Puritan witch trial. As mob justice tangles with an all-powerful witch, the vibrant harmonies and pulse-pounding melodies of Delta Rae fuel a night of magic, passion, and twisted karma. Meet us at the bottom of the river.


Book by Amber Ruffin & Kevin Sciretta

Music by David Schmoll

Lyrics by Amber Ruffin

Directed by Amber Ruffin

Presentation: Sunday July 21, 1PM | Nelly Goletti Theatre

You've heard the myth and legend, but do you know the man? BIGFOOT is a hilarious musical about a small town whose horrible mayor has them convinced their problems are all the fault of Bigfoot and not his inept leadership. With book and lyrics by New York Times bestseller and Tony Award, WGA, and Emmy nominated writer Amber Ruffin (The Wiz, Some Like It Hot) and Kevin Sciretta (“Mystery Science Theater 3000”) and music by David Schmoll (The Second City), BIGFOOT is the next gut-bustin', laugh-a-minute New York musical!

The cast of BIGFOOT will include Justin Guarini (Once Upon A One More Time).


By Kate Walbert

Directed by Sheryl Kaller

Presentation: Thursday July 25, 7PM | Fusco Recital Hall            

New York City. Two artist couples—Sara and Joel, Peter and Charlotte—come together across generations and genres for an intimate dinner party that will reveal the fault lines in their relationships, and the power dynamics through which art and legacy are contested and defined.

The cast of GENIUS will include Mark Linn-Baker (The Music Man).


Co-Created and Written by Shanessa Sweeney

Composed by Bongi Duma

Co-Created and Choreographed by Ray Mercer

Directed by Rufus Bonds Jr.

Presentations: Friday July 26, 7PM and Saturday July 27, 7PM | Nelly Goletti Theatre

GAME NIGHT is an exhilarating story of seven friends coming together for their monthly gathering of good times, jokes and most importantly, games. Told through dance and spoken word, they find out things about each other they never knew, some of which challenge the very core of their bond and some that will change the trajectory of the friend group. GAME NIGHT showcases the beauty and complexities of American experiences through the lens of Black American culture and unabashedly highlights the challenges of those experiences. Co-created by choreographer Ray Mercer and actress Shanessa Sweeney, GAME NIGHT is a love letter to the Culture.

the monsters

Written and Directed by Ngozi Anyanwu

Presentation: Saturday July 27, 3PM | Fusco Recital Hall            

the monsters is a sibling love story that follows LIL and BIG as they reconnect Wrestle with their demons Fight with their fists. All through their love of MMA.

The cast of the monsters will include Okieriete Onaodowan (A Doll's House).


By Stacy Osei-Kuffour

Presentation: Sunday July 28, 1PM | Fusco Recital Hall     

A Midwestern family comes together one night, only to be shattered by an alleged buried secret; true or not, it swallows the family whole.


By Kate Douglas

Directed by Kate Whoriskey

Featuring Jessica Hecht

Presentation: Thursday August 1, 7PM | Fusco Recital Hall         

There was a brief moment in history when a flower could ruin your life. Jessica Hecht stars in TULIPA, a riches to rags monologue set against the Dionysian backdrop of Tulipmania in the 17th century. In a world gone mad, TULIPA examines how we can find what truly nourishes us. This sensual and surprising story of self-discovery is the second collaboration between writer Kate Douglas (The Apiary) with director Kate Whoriskey (Clyde's).

The cast of TULIPA will include Jessica Hecht (Summer, 1976) and Stephanie Crousillat (The Apiary).


Based on Réparer les Vivants by Maylis deKerangal

Book and additional lyrics by Kait Kerrigan

Music and Lyrics by Anne Eisendrath & Ian Eisendrath

Directed by Christopher Ashley

Presentations: Friday August 2, 7PM and Saturday August 3, 7PM | Nelly Goletti Theatre        

THE HEART is based on Maylis deKerangal's novel, Réparer les Vivants, and tells the story of 24 hours in the life of a heart as a young man is leaving this world and a woman making peace with her early death receives a second chance at life. The show is a fast-paced, 9-actor ensemble piece, featuring a through-composed EDM score that takes its inspiration from the world of the high-tech hospital.

The cast of THE HEART will include Heidi Blickenstaff (Jagged Little Pill), Miguel Cervantes (Hamilton), Drew Gehling (Almost Famous), Gizel Jimenez (Cornelia Street), Jay Armstrong Johnson (Parade), Taylor Iman Jones (Six: The Musical), Zachary Noah Piser (KPOP), Wren Rivera (Teeth), and more.


Play by Adam Chanler-Berat & Grace McLean

Music and Lyrics by Grace McLean

Directed by Tyler Thomas 

Presentation: Saturday August 3, 3PM | Fusco Recital Hall

After the sudden death of her collaborator, Jo goes on a quest for answers that may or may not–most likely may not–help finish the piece they were working on together. Generations of artists speak to each other across the chasm of space and time in this living requiem about the intertwining of loss and the creative process, and the ways in which art hides and reveals us. 

The cast of AFTER PETER will include Kyle Beltran (“American Rust”) and Marin Ireland (Spain), as well as musician Erica Swindell.


Co-Created by Zack Fine, Bryce Pinkham, Kirya Traber & Rona Siddiqui

Directed by Zack Fine

Performed by Bryce Pinkham

Presentation: Sunday August 4, 1PM | Fusco Recital Hall  

Stranded on a deserted island, a washed-up performer attempts to put on one last show before the rising waters swallow him up.

Complete casting and full creative teams for all projects will be announced shortly.