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New York City's Institute for American Musical Theatre to Offer 2-Year Training Program for Musical Creators

New York City's Institute for American Musical Theatre to Offer 2-Year Training Program for Musical Creators

New York City's Institute for American Musical Theatre has announced plans for a unique 2-year "Creators" program. Built and run by award winning lyricist-librettist Sam Carner (Island Song, Unlock'd), the new intensive and highly collaborative training will be guided by a faculty including composer-lyricist Adam Gwon (Ordinary Days, Scotland PA, String), composer-lyricist Michael R. Jackson (A Strange Loop, Teeth, White Girl in Danger), composer Anna K. Jacobs (Pop, Teeth), director Lonny Price (A Class Act, Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened, Company, Sweeney Todd), composer Derek Gregor (Island Song, Unlock'd), music supervisor Brad Haak (Mary Poppins, Daddy Long Legs), director Marlo Hunter (American Reject, Saved By the Bell: the Musical), musical director Andy Collopy (Lightning Thief), and other Broadway professionals still being confirmed.

The Institute for American Musical Theatre Creators is now accepting applications from aspiring composers, lyricists, bookwriters, and directors with a passion for new-work development for admission in the fall of 2020.

Program designer and director Sam Carner has over 25 years of musical theater writing experience. With awards to his name including the $100,000 Kleban Prize and the Richard Rodgers Award and work that is performed regularly around the world, Carner has also taught various musical-theater-related courses at Yale, NYU, and Temple University. Andrew Drost, founder of IAMT, said of Carner, "I can't think of a better person to lead this new initiative. I've been a fan of his work for years. And, on top of his real-world creative experience and achievement he brings a solid analytical and academic know-how."

Marlo Hunter, director of the upcoming movie musical American Reject, who will also be teaching in the program, added of Carner, "He is a true master, in study and practice, of the genre. As an artist he is uniquely adept at creating organically idiosyncratic characters who surprise us (and often themselves) with their layers and complexities. His facility with comedy, without sacrificing craft, is also a gift for any project. And the fact that he's not only an exceptional writer, but can then dissect and contemplate why certain choices work or don't work in the context of a particular moment or framing device makes him an invaluable teacher of the form."

According to Carner, "Our curriculum will foster individual artistic expression and collaborative exploration while also providing a solid framework and technical training in the craft of musical theater creation. We'll also be working to teach bankable skills in areas adjacent to the writing and direction of musicals, setting up our graduates with the practical abilities they need to work in the industry right away."

Said Drost, "Just as our Performance program engages Broadway professionals to teach its students in a 'learn from those who do' model, our Creators students will be learning from a remarkable group of professionals currently working in the highest levels of the business."

With its home at IAMT's new space in Washington Heights, the Creators program will offer a unique relationship with the Performance program. Writers and directors will be able to draw from a class of more than 100 student vocalists to develop their weekly work. According to Carner, "At a moment when much of new musical development takes place in academic settings, we're extending the model, giving our creators the opportunity to work with student performers from the beginning. They'll get crucial insight and distance on their work while also gaining valuable experience in working with singers."

The Institute for American Musical Theatre Creators plans to admit between 12-20 students. Said Carner, "Our model will allow us to give personal attention to each artist while providing a large enough community that students can learn from a varied and diverse group of colleagues and potentially find long-term collaborators."

"With only a handful of other musical theatre writing degrees around the country, ours is the first to partner a creation program with a performance program so completely. We're filling a unique niche," added Drost. "Beyond that, our class size, our New York City setting, our ethical tuition rates, and our incredible teachers make this something really special."

For more information and the application visit:

Any questions about IAMT Creators may be emailed to:

About Sam Carner:

Sam Carner won the $100,000 Kleban Prize for librettists and, with composer Derek Gregor the John Wallowitch Award for songwriters under 40 and the Richard Rodgers Award. Carner & Gregor were among's 12 "Contemporary Musical Theatre Songwriters You Should Know." 13 of their songs have been nominated for MAC Awards, and their work is performed in hundreds of venues around the world every year and has been sung on all 7 continents.

Carner & Gregor's musical UNLOCK'D played an extended Off-Broadway run at the Duke Theater. Their musical ISLAND SONG has been produced at dozens of theaters around the world, including the Adirondack Theatre Festival, London's Stratford Circus Theatre, Circle in the Square Theatre, Bologna's Tweet Charity (in Italian), Tokyo's Crawfish (in Japanese), Song and Dance Players of Singapore, Vanderbilt University, Measure For Measure Theater, and many more.

Current Carner & Gregor's projects include TECHIES, which had a workshop production at Rockford University and is slated for several licensed productions in 2020, a TBA musical adaptation of an ABC tv show, which will be workshopped at James Madison University in early 2020, and SECOND LINE (formerly TOAST) which had workshops at the Bloomington Playwrights Project, Oregon Shakespeare Festival and NC State and has just been selected as the Pace New Musical for 2020.

Sam's children's musical BARNYARD FOLLIES has been produced by youth theatres around the world and won the Moonlit Wings International Playwriting Competition.

Sam teaches book writing and lyric writing at Temple University's MFA program in Musical Theatre Collaboration. He has taught musical-theatre history and analysis at NYU and Yale and songwriting at NYU's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. Additionally, he has made guest teaching appearances at dozens of universities, including the University of Michigan, Elon, Princeton, Baylor, James Madison University, Rockford University, and many more.

About IAMT:

The Institute for American Musical Theatre was founded in 2015 by Broadway veterans Andrew Drost & Michael Minarik with the singular goal of creating the most effective professional training program in the country. Training with Broadway and Industry professionals, working with and getting feedback from current casting directors, learning from guest artists through masterclasses each semester, offering Film & Television classes and now creating new works each semester through the IAMT New Works series is what separates IAMT from the rest. Now in its new, permanent home at 3835 Broadway, IAMT offers opportunities to its students that don't happen anywhere else. IAMT looks for uniquely talented young performers from around the world. Over the two years of the program, it polishes and hones their skills, as well as give them the networking they need to become successful in the industry.

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