Theater for the New City Presents GRAND THEFT MUSICAL
Theater for the New City, Crystal Field, Executive Director, presents Grand Theft Musical, a world premiere musical based on Robert Sickinger's 1994 musical Platinum Taps, with music composed by John Taylor Thomas. Grand Theft Musical is written by Lissa Moira who directs a cast of 17, including Taylor Brandon, William Broderick*, Jef Canter*, Darcy Dunn, Shana Farr, Carlos Gomez, Becca Gottlieb*, Devon Hall, Robert Homeyer, Douglas McDonnell, Marlena Mack, Alex Hayden Miller, James Parks, Caroline Portu, Darius Anthony Robinson, Kaily Shuler, and David Sloane Esq. Performances will be staged at the Johnson Theatre at Theater for the New City, 155 First Avenue (bet. 9th and 10th Streets), New York, NY 10003 from March 23-April 9, 2017. *Member, Actors' Equity Association. AEA Showcase.
Grand Theft Musical is a boisterous, bawdy, bang-bang musical comedy, which openly purloins from some of the greatest examples of the genre to hilarious effect. The cast of 17 characters includes a powerful, bisexual, vindictive columnist and his network of adorable spies; a ridiculously successful good guy Broadway producer, his gorgeous super-smart stripper girlfriend, and his envious sneaky business partner; an exceedingly dangerous mafia Don and his tap-dancing nephew; a larger-than-life Broadway director - a big bear of a man who is an unapologetic Socialist; a beautiful, sensitive suicidal actress; a wide-eyed, optimistic writer composer; a stunningly insufferable supers-star British couple who invite sexual intrigue; and a highly talented acid-tongued choreographer. How they relate to, deal and double-deal with, fall in and out of love and in and out of bed with each other, while singing and dancing up a storm, constitutes the plot. Grand Theft Musical is a sophisticatedly silly, satirical lampoon yet warm embrace of Broadway and all things theater. Beg, borrow but please don't steal a ticket to Grand Theft Musical.
Robert Sickinger was a guiding spirit of the theater's avant-garde, a founder of several cutting edge companies in Chicago and here in New York City (Manhattan Theater Club). He has been sorely missed since his passing. In his final years, Robert became entranced by the musical theater form, so to honor this great man, his ideas and his legacy, Lissa Moira has adapted his 1994 musical Platinum Taps into this brand new incarnation, Grand Theft Musical. John Taylor Thomas remains the composer.
Grand Theft Musical is presented by Theater for the New City. Musical Director/Pianist: Andy Peterson; Choreographers: Carlos Gomez, J. Alan Hanna and Mallory Brophy; Set Designer: Marc Marcante; Sets and Costume Designer: Lytza Colon; Lighting Designer: Alex Bartenieff. Stage Manager: Charles Casano; Fight Choreographer: Mark Lang.
12 performances will be staged from March 23-April 9 on the following schedule: Thursday-Saturday at 8pm & Sunday at 3pm.
Robert Sickinger (original book & lyrics, composer) 1926-2013, was a director, actor and widely considered "the father of Chicago's Off Loop theater movement," a key figure in creating a network of theater companies equivalent to New York's Off-Broadway and Off Broadway. He introduced audiences to writers like Athol Fugard, Edward Albee, and Harold Pinter. He is described by The New York Times as having seeded a Chicago theater scene that evolved into one of the country's greatest. Sickinger made his mark as a director in Philadelphia where he created several theater companies before moving to Chicago in 1963 at the age of 35 at the invitation of the Hull House executive director Paul Jans. From Hull House, he built several theater companies, a touring company, a "chamber theater" for staged readings in private homes, acting classes and a writers' workshop. He was a Samuel Beckett aficionado and mounted nontraditional productions of classic works by Sophocles' Electra and Camus' Caligula to name a few. Playwright and screenwriter David Mamet called Sickinger "one of the greatest directors I've ever known.... He invented the Chicago theater of today," which now boasts over 200 theatres. Sickinger moved to New York City in 1969, and in the 1970s, he directed the feature film "Love in a Taxi" and others. He served as executive director at the Manhattan Theatre Club where in 1972 he directed his controversial "rockumentary" 22 Years, about convicted multiple-murderer Charles Manson. This production of Grand Theft Musical represents a culmination of Robert Sickinger's love of literature, music and theatre. One of Robert Sickinger's final projects, Nicholas Nickleby, A New Musical was presented at TNC in 2014 as a tribute to him and his work. Platinum Taps was produced at The Producers Club in 1994.
Lissa Moira (book & director) AEA, SAG, AFTRA is also a playwright, screenwriter, lyricist, poet and artist. She more recently directed Mira Spektor's Lady of the Castle and Seymour's Barab's From Oy to Vey and In Questionable Taste. Other recent directing credits include The Elephant Pen, Speakeasy: John and Jane's Adventures in the Wonderland, Danny and the Deep Blue Sea, and a 35-person cast in Nicholas Nickleby: A New Musical at Theatre for the New City, another adaptation by the late Robert Sickinger. Out of 5,000 world-wide submissions, Ms. Moira's play TIME IT IS was chosen as a top ten finalist in the prestigious Chesterfield/Paramount screenwriting competition. Ms. Moira's 2007 play Before God Was Invented was an American nominee for the Susan Brownell-Smith International Playwrights Award. Ms. Moira co-wrote "Dead Canaries," a feature film starring Charles Durning, Dan Lauria, Dee Wallace Stone and Joel Higgins. With co-writer Richard West, Lissa's well known for Sexual Psychobabble and The Best S*x of the XX Century Sale. Both ran over a year and each enjoyed critical and popular success. The Moira/West team's DaDa noir musical, Who Murdered Love?featured Broadway's Luba Mason and Tracy McDowell as well as William Broderick. It originated at Theater for the New City and ran at the Players Theatre as part of the 2012 FringeNYC (Ms. Moira directed as well). Other directing/co-writing credits include Sirens Heart: Norma Jeane and Marilyn in Purgatory (which enjoyed a 14-month Off-Broadway run at The Actor's Temple), and Tom Jones a new musical (Bloomberg Radio declared the directing "beautiful, fine and fresh"). Of her directing work on Cocaine Dreams, a play about Freud at The Kraine Theatre, the New York Post raved "inspired."
Theater for the New City is a Pulitzer Prize winning cultural center that is known for its high artistic standards and widespread community service. One of New York's most prolific theatrical organizations, TNC produces 30-40 premieres of new American plays per year, at least 10 of which are by emerging and young playwrights. Many influential theater artists of the last quarter century have found TNC's Resident Theater Program instrumental to their careers, among them Sam Shepard, Moises Kaufman, Richard Foreman, Charles Busch, Maria Irene Fornes, Miguel Piñero, Jean-Claude van Itallie, Vin Diesel, Oscar Nuñez, Laurence Holder, Romulus Linney and Academy Award Winners Tim Robbins and Adrien Brody. TNC also presents plays by multi-ethnic/multi-disciplinary theater companies who have no permanent home. Among the well-known companies that have been presented by TNC are Mabou Mines, The Living Theater, Bread and Puppet Theater, the San Francisco Mime Troupe and COBU, the Japanese women's drumming and dance group. TNC also produced the Yangtze Repertory Company's 1997 production of BETWEEN LIFE AND DEATH, which was the only play ever produced in America by Gao Xingjian before he won the 2000 Nobel Prize for Literature. TNC seeks to develop theater audiences and inspire future theater artists from the often-overlooked low-income minority communities of New York City by producing minority writers from around the world and by bringing the community into theater and theater into the community through its many free Festivals. TNC productions have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and over 42 OBIE Awards for excellence in every theatrical discipline. TNC is also the only Theatrical Organization to have won the Mayor's Stop The Violence award.