NY Musical Theatre Festival's Student Leadership Program to Present GRASSROOTS and TRAILBLAZERS, 7/15

The New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF) celebrates emerging composers and performers with two concert series - Grassroots July 10 and 11 at 7 pm and Trailblazers July 15 at 7 pm and 16 at 7 pm - at The Laurie Beechman Theatre at the West Bank Cafe? (410 West 42nd Street). Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at www.nymf.org or by calling (212) 352­3101.

Grassroots celebrates the simple magic of storytelling through song. With an acoustic, folksy, and minimalist feel, Grassroots peels back the layers of sound to get to the complex and dynamic narratives at the heart of musical theatre. David Manella produces.

Directed by Molly Rose Clifford with music direction by Ben Chavez, Grassroots showcases student songwriters Hali Alspach and Rachel Kunstadt, Kyra Atekwana, Jacob Brandt, Ethan Carlson and Saidu Sinlah, Simon de Carvalho, Amanda Keating, Steven Maier, Simon Pincus, Jakob Reinhardt, Mickey Theis, Emma Weinstein, and Cassandra West.

The cast features Bonnie Antosh, Kyra Atekwana, Jacob Brandt, Sean Green Jr., De?a Julien (West Side Story 1st Nat'l Tour, Intimacy), Amanda Keating, Steven Maier, Simon Pincus (Dr. Seuss' How The Grinch Stole Christmas!), Gilbert Sanchez, and Leila Teitelman.

Trailblazers is a celebration of the new sounds of musical theatre. Just as The Lisps brought their indie rock band to The Good Person of Szechwan and Dave Malloy created an electronica opera with The Great Comet of 1812, Trailblazers will push the boundaries of convention. Dana Jones produces.

Directed by Lilleth Glimcher with music direction by Solomon Hoffman, Trailblazers showcases student composers/lyricists Christina Capatides Vollmayer, Ben Chavez, Simon de Carvalho, Mateus Falci, Olivia Harris, Solomon Hoffman, Khiyon Hursey, Daniel Lazour, Eunggyu Lee, Addison O'Donnell, Yianni Papadimos, Nick Parker, Jakob Reinhart, and Marah vanBeekom.

The cast includes Sean Green Jr., De?a Julien (West Side Story 1st Nat'l Tour, Intimacy), Jessica Kahkoska, Joey LaVarco (13, 30 Rock), Rebekah Lowin, Mary Claire Miskell, Cheeyang Ng (The Glee Project), Monet Sabel, Alex Sanders, and Ariella Serur.

The New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF) exists to revitalize musical theatre culture by discovering and promoting new musical theatre artists, producers and projects; nurturing a vibrant and innovative artistic community; and connecting one of America's greatest art forms with a diverse, contemporary audience.

Now in its eleventh year, the Festival is the largest musical theatre event in America. The preeminent site for launching new musicals and discovering new talent, the Festival provides an affordable platform for artists to mount professional productions that reach their peers, industry leaders, and musical theatre fans. More than 90 Festival shows have gone on to productions on and Off­Broadway, in regional theaters in 48 states, and
in more than 20 countries worldwide. Festival alumni have received a wide array of awards including the Tony Award® and the Pulitzer Prize. In 2013, NYMF received a special Drama Desk Award in recognition of its work "creating and nurturing new musical theatre, ensuring the future of this essential art form."

NYMF is the flagship program of National Music Theater Network, Inc., a 501(c) (3) not­for­profit organization. NYMF 2014 is presented in association with Fuzzrocket, TheaterMania, and Production Resource Group. NYMF is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.

NYMF Memberships, which combine charitable contributions with valuable, flexible ticket packages and perks like early seating and tickets to individual events, are currently available for purchase at (212) 352­3101 or www.nymf.org/member.

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