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New Musical 'Big Tent' Covers Life of Tammy Faye Bakker

A new musical Big Tent, based on the life of Tammy Faye Bakker, is currently being developed by Ryan J. Davis, Jeffery Self, Ben Cohn, and Sean McDaniel

"Tammy Faye Bakker is one of the most fascinating people alive – a real a pop icon." Jeffery Self, the book writer, said. "There's something unique about a woman who is loved by both Southern Baptists and drag queens."

Director Ryan J. Davis added, "Think about this woman; she went from having nothing in Minnesota to being the First Lady of a huge media empire and then back to nothing again.  How can we not turn this into a musical?"

The musical will chronicle Tammy's extraordinary and turbulent rise to fame. Whether helping to create and maintain a large TV network, speaking out on behalf of AIDS awareness, or coping with the sex and fundraising scandals that brought down her husband Jim Bakker, Tammy took it all with a certain style and dignity. 

The team plans to debut the musical in Summer 2007.

Cohn and McDaniel have been writing together for six years. They attended New York University's Tisch School of the Arts Graduate Musical Theatre Writing program.  Their musical Owl Creek has been seen in NYC workshops, and was produced at Ithaca College.  Cohn is currently the Assistant Conductor and Pianist for Wicked.  Other Broadway credits include Spelling Bee, Woman in White, In My Life, and Wonderful Town, as well as the recent NAMT musical White Noise.  McDaniel is currently the drummer for Monty Python's Spamalot.  Other Broadway credits include Wicked, Lion King, Avenue Q, Aida, Les Miserables, Millie, Fiddler, Nine, Assassins, Wonderful Town, Producers, and Rent.  He also plays for Audra McDonald

Self had assisted such Tony Award winning directors as Joe Mantello and Melvin Bernhardt. Most recently, he wrote books and lyrics for Definition of a Housewife, with Joshua Morgan, which received workshop productions at Columbia University and Montclair Music Theater this past summer. His work has been produced by such regional companies as the Horizon Theater in Atlanta, Georgia and Artists Collective in Los Angeles, CA. 

Davis recently conceived and directed the critically acclaimed White Noise at the New York Musical Theatre Festival, which was a sold-out hit and was featured on 'Good Morning America' and 'ABC Primetime Live.' In New York, he also directed Grace Falls (FringeNYC 2006), Genius Famous (FringeNYC 2005), as well as numerous other productions. Regionally, he directed Hedwig & The Angry Inch in Rochester, NY. As an Assistant Director Off-Broadway, he contributed to Jacques Brel Is Alive... (dir. Gordon Greenberg), If You Give A Mouse A Cookie… (dir. Kevin Del Aguila), The Secret Garden (dir. Stafford Arima) and Slut (dir. Gordon Greenberg). 
For more information on the show, visit: www.myspace.com/tammymusical.

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