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Thoms, Huffman, D'Abruzzo, Etc. Set for Atrainplays XXII

theAtrainplays are a celebration of New York, created by six teams while traveling the entire route of the A train, from 207th Street & Broadway to Far Rockaway and back.  On Tuesday evening, June 19th,  four librettists will hop on the A train at 207th Street and begin writing the books for four 15-minute musicals, all set on the A train.

"Before each of the teams begins their journey, they pick a number between 3 and 5 to set the number of characters, then they choose headshots from a blind draw to determine who is in each piece.  When the librettists reach the Far Rockaway stop, they randomly select, through another blind draw, their collaborative lyricists, composers, directors and choreographers, who have been awaiting their arrival at a nearby McDonald's with two playwrights joining them and just beginning their journey.  Two directors will meet the creators of the now finished plays at 207th Street and they all proceed to Columbus Circle where they meet the pre-selected pool of actors, decipher their scribbles, copy the scripts and begin rehearsals.  They have until show time the next day, Wednesday night, June 20th at 8:00PM to develop these works into six exciting new musical experiences to be shared with the audience at New World Stages on the set of the hit musical Altar Boyz," state press notes.

theAtrainplays, vol. XXII is being produced by Lawrence Feeney, VAlley Theatre League, and The Off-Broadway Brainstormers; theAtrainplays began in 2002 at The Neighborhood Playhouse.

Performers scheduled to appear in theAtrainplays vol. XXII will include Emy Baysic (Miss Saigon), Stephanie D'Abruzzo, (Tony Award nominee, Avenue Q), Kevin Daniels (Ladder 49), Natalie Douglas (6-time MAC Award winner), Ryan Duncan (Altar Boyz), Lawrence Feeney (My Super Ex-Girlfriend), Brian Geraghty (Bobby, Jarhead), Eric Michael Gillett (Kiss Me, Kate), Blythe Gruda (Of Thee I Sing, Encores!), Cady Huffman (Tony Award winner, The Producers), Timothy Johnson (A Chorus Line), Donovan Patton ("Blue's Clues"), Thom Sesma (The Times They Are A Changin'), Tracie Thoms (Rent film, "Cold Case"), and Melanie Vaughan (Ring of Fire), among others to be announced.

The creative team includes writers Michael Lazan, Stephen O'Rourke, and Erica Silberman, lyricist-composers Gaby Alter, Brian J. Nash, and Brandon Patton; directors David Brind, Edie Cowan, Michael Duling, and Mark Lonergan. Also involved are Alec Berlin (Musical Director), Andrea 'Spook' Testani (Production Supervisor), Andrew Donovan (Original Scenic Designer), and Carol A. Sullivan (Production Stage Manager).

Tickets for this one-night-only event benefiting the Off-Broadway community are $50 for the performance, $100 for premium seats, and $20 for the post-show benefit party with the cast and creative team. Tickets can be purchased on-line through, by telephone at 212-239-6200, or in person at New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Photo of Tracie Thoms by Walter McBride/Retna Ltd.

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