Benj Pasek & Justin Paul Win Songwriter's Fellowship Award for A CHRISTMAS STORY

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The producers of A Christmas Story, The Musical! congratulate their composer/lyricist team Benj Pasek and Justin Paul on receiving the 2011 Songwriter's Fellowship Award.

Now overseen by ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), the award was initiated by songwriter and Tony Award nominee Ann Hampton Callaway. In acknowledgement of support she received from another acclaimed songwriter, Amanda McBroom, earlier in her career, Calloway decided "pay it forward" and award the first Songwriter's Fellowship Award to celebrated songwriter John Bucchino. This year, Bucchino has passed the honor along to Pasek and Paul, who's score for A Christmas Story, The Musical! will be heard in a National Tour playing cities around the U.S. starting this November.

"This is really an extraordinary fellowship," says Michael Kerker, Director of Musical Theatre at ASCAP. "The award recognizes excellence, celebrates and offers support to emerging talent. The award represents artists saluting and mentoring their fellow artists and allows new talent to grow and flourish. Pasek and Paul are an extraordinary team in the tradition of the great songwriters of the American Musical Theatre. This team makes for a wonderful addition to the Fellowship's chain."

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul are a musical theatre writing team living in New York City. Their first show, Edges, has been produced throughout the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Europe and is licensed by Music Theatre International. Current projects include the musical adaptation of Roald Dahl's James And The Giant Peach and Dogfight, a new musical commissioned by Lincoln Center Theater. They are the youngest winners of the Jonathan Larson Award and served as songwriters for Disney Channel's four-time Emmy-nominated series "Johnny and The Sprites." They contributed to If You Give A Pig A Pancake and Duck For President for Theatreworks USA and were listed as part of the "50 to Watch" up-and-coming writers by The Dramatist Magazine. They were interviewed on National Public Radio, selected as 2007-2008 Dramatist Guild Fellows, and their music has been broadcast on Sirius XM's Live On Broadway channel. The duo has played sold-out concerts across America at venues including The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., Joe's Pub in New York City and the Falcon Theater in Los Angeles, and will soon perform in Australia's Adelaide Cabaret Festival in June of 2010. They wrote Dr. Williams for Orchard Project's 24-Hour Musicals benefit and will be featured in the upcoming documentary Overnight Musicals about the process by Incubation Films. They are proud graduates of The University of Michigan

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul's score for A Christmas Story, The Musical! can be heard in a five-city National Tour for the 2011 holiday season with engagements in Hershey, PA (Hershey Theatre, Nov. 8 - 13); Detroit, MI (Fisher Theatre, Nov. 15 - 27); Raleigh, NC (Memorial Auditorium, Nov. 29 - Dec. 4); Tampa, FL, (Straz Center, Dec. 6 -11); and Chicago, IL (Chicago Theatre, Dec. 14 - 30).

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