Initial Casting Announced for Powerhouse Season; Raul Esparza, Colton Ryan, and More

Initial Casting Announced for Powerhouse Season; Raul Esparza, Colton Ryan, and More

Vassar & New York Stage and Film announce casting for the first mainstage production of the Powerhouse Season as well as the addition of the musical Galileo and play Becky Nurse of Salem to the readings festival, and the announcement of the 2019 New York Stage and Film Founders' Award recipient and Fellows. Actors heading up to Poughkeepsie this summer include four-time Tony Award nominee Raúl Esparza, Michael Esper, Michael Hsu Rosen, Colton Ryan, and many more. For tickets and more information on the season, please visit

the bandaged place, the first mainstage production of the 2019 Powerhouse Season, written by NYSAF's 2015 Founders' Award Winner and 2018 Relentless Award winner Harrison David Rivers, with direction by David Mendizábal, will star Caroline Clay (The Little Foxes), Sam Encarnacion ("Jessica Jones"),Milan Marsh ("Law & Order: SVU"), Phillip Johnson Richardson (Hamilton), and Michael Hsu Rosen (Torch Song). The production will play Thursday, June 27 through Sunday, July 7 at the Powerhouse Theater. The creative team includes: Wilson Chin (scenic design), Ásta Bennie Hostetter (costume design),Stacey Derosier (lighting design), Mauricio Escamilla (original music and sound design), Rocio Mendez (fight and intimacy direction), and movement byJeremy McQueen. the bandaged place received additional development as part of NYSAF's 2019 Winter Season.

Added to the annual summer readings festival is the new musical Galileo, featuring a book by two-time Emmy Award winner Danny Strong, music & lyrics byMichael Weiner and Zoe Sarnak, and direction by Tony Award winner Michael Mayer. The Galileo cast will include four-time Tony Award nominee Raúl Esparza (Company), Michael Esper (FX's "Trust"), Solea Pfeiffer (Hamilton), and Colton Ryan (Alice By Heart). The reading will be presented on Saturday, June 29 at 4:00pm at the Susan Stein Shiva Theater.

Galileo is a musical about a mathematician, inventor, astronomer and scientist who makes a discovery that will change the entire understanding of the universe. Unfortunately, what he has uncovered directly conflicts with the standard teachings of the most powerful institution in the world. With a rebellious sound that parallels his own rebellion, Galileo is a classic tale of an individual battling an entire system, and of how leaders of nations must lie to protect their own power, no matter how apparent the truth may be.

Galileo joins the previously announced slate of readings, which includes The Notebook. Based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks, music and lyrics by IngridMichaelson with book by Bekah Brunstetter, and direction by Michael Greif, The Notebook will be presented on Sunday, June 23 at 3:00pm in the Martel Theater.

Also added to the annual summer readings festival is Sarah Ruhl's new play Becky Nurse of Salem, about an ordinary but strong-willed grandmother just trying to get by in post-Obama America. She's also the great-great-great-great-granddaughter of Rebecca Nurse, who was infamously executed for witchcraft in 1692-but things have changed for women since then, haven't they? Desperate to raise her troubled teenaged granddaughter right, and also hook up with an old flame, Becky visits a local witch for help. But those spells and potions don't work out exactly as planned. Becky Nurse of Salem speaks to the trials and triumphs of women today-and is also a comedic, warmhearted story about trying to do the right thing in a chaotic world. Becky Nurse of Salem will be presented on Friday, July 19 at 8:00pm in the Martel Theater.

Vassar & New York Stage and Film also announced today the recipients of their fellowships and awards: Keelay Gipson will receive the 2019 Founders' Award,Nell Bailey and Louisa Melcher will receive the 2019 Epstein Fellowships, Erika Dickerson-Despenza will receive the 2019 Dramatists Guild Fund Fellowship and Ben Randle will receive the 2019 Leo Shull Musical Theater Directing Fellowship, in partnership with the Drama League.

Additional casting of the 2019 Powerhouse Season will be announced shortly. Powerhouse Season casting is by Telsey + Company.

For tickets and more information on the season, visit

Photo Credit: Genevieve Rafter-Keddy

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