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VIDEO: Natalie Weiss and Felicia Boswell Perform 'Stand For' From EMOJILAND


The number was written to inspire the audience to ask themselves what they “stand for.”

Natalie Weiss (The Greatest Showman, Dear Evan Hansen) and Felicia Boswell (Jesus Christ Superstar Live, Motown), two stars of the new musical Emojiland, whose Off-Broadway premiere was cut short in March by the pandemic shutdown, have reunited virtually to perform the song "Stand For," supported by a hundred singers and musicians.

In the context of the show, "Stand For" is sung by the emoji character Construction Worker (Weiss) in protest of governmental corruption, while Police Officer (Boswell) grapples with the ethical dilemma of enforcing that government's decrees.

One of the show's writers, Keith Harrison, who also produced the quarantine music video, says the number was written to inspire the audience to ask themselves what they "stand for."

"In this hyper-politicized era, powered by the constant buzz of social media and its algorithmically-generated echo chambers, taking time to truly consider our principles rather than clinging steadfastly to blind partisanship or cultural cliques is a vital step toward healing ourselves and our society," Harrison says. "The hard part is recognizing that we may no longer align with principles we've stood for - or people we've stood with - in the past, and then having strength enough to rebuild ourselves and our communities into who we truly want to be."

Joining Weiss and Boswell in the video are singers from the Weston Drama Workshop, AMDA College of the Performing Arts and Honeoye Falls-Lima High School, accompanied by a five piece band comprised of CJ Baker, Emily Rosenfield, Geno Henderson, Jazz Limbo and Harrison.

Emojiland, which began development in 2014, tells the story of an emoji civilization living inside a smartphone, facing impending deletion due to a software virus. It opened on January 19, 2020. Its interwoven themes of identity, mortality, justice, power, class, and love resonated loudly with audiences and critics during its abbreviated Off-Broadway run, and previously at the New York Musical Festival.

The production, produced by Visceral Entertainment and Arborhouse Productions, with direction by Tom Caruso, received two Outer Critics Circle Awards, and was nominated for four Drama Desk Awards, a Lucille Lortel Award, and an Off-Broadway Alliance Award for Best New Musical. Its original cast recording is currently on the GRAMMY ballot for Best Musical Theater Album.

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