NEW WRITERS AT 54! to Kick Off in January at 54 Below

Featuring Alex Bechtel, Josh Walker and more.

By: Jun. 14, 2024
NEW WRITERS AT 54! to Kick Off in January at 54 Below
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54 BELOW will present these new and upcoming writers. New Writers At 54! is an ongoing series at 54 Below showcasing today’s hottest emerging voices, curated by Assistant Programming Director Alexa Spiegel. Featuring the new works of Rashad McPherson, Dionne McClain-Freeney, Anna K. Jacobs, and more. 

NEW WRITERS AT 54! ALEX BECHTEL – JANUARY 7 AT 9:30PM

Alex Bechtel, composer/lyricist of Penelope (Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival & Signature Theatre DC), and The Appointment (The New York Times, Vulture, TimeOut NY “Best of 2019,” and The New Yorker “Best of 2023”), makes his 54 Below debut with New Writers at 54! Alex Bechtel. Drawing on his vast body of work, Bechtel and a series of special guests will perform original songs from his past, present, and future musicals. You’ll laugh, get a song or two stuck in your head, and understand why his business cards read: "Alex Bechtel | Songs that make people cry."

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! Josh Walker – JANUARY 14 AT 9:30PM

Josh Walker is thrilled to debut their original musical The Last Dance at 54 Below in concert. Join us for a night of music & storytelling as we go through the songs from their musical. Written & composed by Josh Walker, The Last Dance tells the story of a young man who is racing the clock as his terminal illness & his dream of finding his purpose go head-to-head! Don’t miss a heartfelt night of music, song, and hope.

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! THE KILBANES – JANUARY 21 AT 9:30PM

The Kilbanes are proud to bring their story-forward, rock-driven musical theater repetoire to 54 Below! Directed and produced by the Kilbanes, New Writers at 54! The Kilbanes will feature songs from their entire catalog, including indie rock tunes from Weightless (Lortel nomination for Best Musical; Drama Desk nomination for Best Music), classic-rock inspired jams from Eddie the Marvelous (AMTP, O'Neill National Music Theater Conference), and sweeping folk songs from My Antonia (Next Generation Commission - upcoming). The Kilbanes promise to draw you in and keep you humming for days to come. Join us for an inspiring evening of catchy melodies and powerful storytelling!

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! FRANKLIN RANKIN – JANUARY 28 AT 9:30PM

Meet Franklin Rankin, a multi-talented guitarist and songwriter behind the electrifying sounds of NYC's music scene. From playing alongside the likes of Julius Rodriguez and Ben Platt to serenading audiences on the "Tonight Show's" Battle of the Instant Songwriters, Franklin's journey through music has been full of high points. With his EP Sports Fan and a slew of singles under his belt, Franklin has been prolific with his artistry. As the co-leader of the funk-pop band Big Stuff, Franklin has produced two albums reaching over a quarter of a million streams. He continues to expand his reach in the NYC music community, opening his home studio Rodeo Baby this spring.

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! Lawrence Dandridge – FEBRUARY 4 AT 9:30PM

In an unforgettable one night only celebration, experience the original music of Lawrence Dandridge with the heartwarming story of the new musical Coming Home. Follow the journey to the Baxter Family Reunion, where an unapologetic Black family comes together for a weekend to put aside their differences to discover the true meaning of family. Coming Home takes you on a compelling journey exploring the generational dynamics between estranged family members set to an R&B and gospel-infused contemporary musical theatre score. Enjoy snippets of the show and engaging conversation with the writer and composer, Lawrence Dandridge, along with members of the Aurway Repertory Theatre Ensemble. Ain’t nothing like a family gathering and you’re invited… see you at 54 Below!!

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! Anna K. Jacobs – FEBRUARY 11 AT 9:30PM

Grab a drink (or a crab cake) and get cozy with Anna K. Jacobs, the Jonathan Larson Award-winning composer behind off-Broadway’s smash hit musical, Teeth (“a bloody, bawdy musical with banging songs” – Vulture). Featuring a dazzling line-up of friends and collaborators, Anna will share songs from her varied and colorful collection of musicals, including Teeth, POP! (“vibrant, hip, fresh, and a hell of a lot of fun” – Variety), and Witnesses (2022 Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Production). She will also give a sneak-peak of the brand-new musical she’s creating with the celebrated playwright, Anna Ziegler (Photograph 51, The Wanderers), called A House Without Windows. Expect to leave with some worms in your ears!

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! Dionne McClain-Freeney – FEBRUARY 18 AT 9:30PM

Dionne McClain-Freeney is a composer, composer-lyricist, arranger, musical director, and teaching artist whose music for off-Broadway, children’s theatre, festivals, Gospel, and more, have earned accolades, including GLAAD Media Awards, AUDELCO, and a Drama Desk nomination. Whether big or small – stages AND ages, her music has taken audiences from the streets of Greenwich Village to downtown Newark, around the globe with children and talking parrots sampling rice & beans dishes, to Black fathers loving their sons, to an opulent ballroom for the “Black society event of the year.” After a feature in 54 Below’s Black Writer Showcase, join Dionne for a night of musical storytelling that will answer the question: Which theatre, TV, and movie megastar cried tears of joy after hearing one of her songs?

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! RASHAD MCPHERSON – FEBRUARY 25 AT 9:30PM

New Writers at 54! Rashad McPherson will be an evening of music wherein we all share in a songwriter’s journey. The experience will include the mountaintops of accomplishment, achievement, and success; but also the valley lows of closed doors, difficult moments, and missed opportunities. 

Join Rashad McPherson, his band and singers, and several special guests for a night of original music that will span genres. Giving each of us a reminder to keep believing. 

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! ELIZABETH ADDISON – MARCH 4 AT 9:30PM

"What I wouldn't give for the tiniest flash of... the smallest spark of... hope '' It is the year 2034 and five strangers find themselves in the small town of Anathema. On the outside everything looks as it should, but something isn't right... the light in everyone's eyes is gone, what has happened in this small town? And how can five strangers bring it back to life? Confederacy of Faith in three movements is this newest work by award winning writer and director of Chasing Grace, Elizabeth Addison. In this new piece, Addison attempts to bring back kindness, hope, joy and meaning to a world thrown into nihilism and despair by a profound falsehood that we have all believed: we are separated. How do we connect in such an isolating age? Come on down to Anathema, and let the journey begin. This new show will feature Addison as the Narrator and will be under the direction of current Galileoactor DeMone Seraphin. Stay tuned for announcements on casting and ways to engage with this work prior to its premiere.

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! CHARLENE JEAN – MARCH 11 AT 9:30PM

Charlene Jean, creator of BRICKS, THE MUSHROOM KINGDOM OF EZILI, and KING AFUA makes their 54 Below debut in New Writers at 54! Charlene Jean. Credited as a “visionary, intellectually rigorous, epic” R&B composer (Playwrights Horizon), get ready to dance in the stars. Selections include hits from smash musical BRICKS, sneak peeks into their upcoming album, and fresh takes on their personal favorite soul, funk, and rock classics. Lately more composer and producer than performer, Char is excited to return to the stage to sang down.

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! BRANDON JACKSON – MARCH 18 AT 9:30PM

In an attempt to look cool to his friends, his mother, and most importantly Linda Eder, composer/orchestrator Brandon Jackson makes his 54 Below solo debut. Join Brandon and his friends for an evening of lullabies such as “Girl in the Hot Air Balloon,” theater numbers like “Islands” and “EVVY-Land,” and a post-St. Patrick’s Day treat! Linda Eder will not be at this performance...unless she wants to be, of course.

Featuring stars to be announced!

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

NEW WRITERS AT 54! Ethan Carlson – MARCH 25 AT 9:30PM

Join Ethan Carlson (Waitress) and many incredible Broadway guest artists, in a night of bold, new, exciting, electric songs. The material will range from musical theatre to pop, and feature material from Her Sound (full cast recording available wherever you stream music, feat. Jeanna de Waal, L Morgan Lee, Krysta Rodriguez, Eleri Ward, Kerstin Anderson, Alysha Umphress, and more!), Goliath (demos streaming currently, featuring Ellis Gage and Ethan), A Condo in Florida (never before heard!) and **brand new pop music**. This evening of music will not want to be missed. Follow @theethancarlson to hear more about this show, and stay tuned for announcements on lineup!

$40 cover charge (includes $5 in fees). $67.50 premium seating (includes $7.50 in fees). $25 food & beverage minimum.

LIVE AT 54 BELOW

54 Below’s new series is designed to make more shows accessible to fans all over the world. “Live from 54 Below” will feature LIVE performances of current shows on the calendar, streamed directly from Broadway’s Living Room. Seven cameras will capture the excitement of being at the venue – all paired with the club’s dramatic lighting and award-winning sound design. To recreate the live experience, all shows will be presented exclusively at the time of performance with an in-house audience and will not be available on demand afterwards.




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