Ben Folds, Zosia Mamet, Nikki M. James & More Set for 24 HOUR MUSICALS, Beg. Today
A team of nearly 100 stars from Broadway, film, television, and music will cast, write, compose, direct, rehearse, tech, and perform four original musicals - all in the obscenely short time between an evening meet-and-greet today, April 28 and show time on Monday, April 29 at 8pm. The 24 Hour Company is teaming with the Exchange, an off-Broadway theater company, to create the fifth-ever 24 Hour Musicals. The event benefits the Exchange's summer retreat, The Orchard Project, which kick-starts innovative new theatrical work from around the world.
The musicals will be written, cast, rehearsed, and performed at The Gramercy Theatre over the course of a single day, featuring an all-star line up of Broadway performers, stars from TV and film, great composers and writers, directors and - to top it all off - choreographers and musical directors. Participants will include singer-songwriter Ben Folds, Maulik Pancholy (30 Rock), Zosia Mamet (Girls), Josh Lawson (House of Lies), Deirdre Lovejoy (The Wire), Nikki M. James (TONY Award, Book of Mormon), Anthony Rapp (Rent, Without You), cabaret sensation Bridget Everett, Kristoffer Diaz (Chad Diety), Lisa Peterson (Obie Award, An Iliad), Jonathan Marc Sherman (Clive, Things We Want), Alicia Witt (Friday Night Lights, Law & Order), John Cariani (Law & Order, Fiddler on the Roof), Brian Crawley (Violet), Joe Iconis (The Black Suits), and Danny Goldstein (Godspell).
"This event produces enough adrenaline to power a normal person for at least a month. I can't wait for the rush - and I can't wait to see what these enormously talented people create," said Ari Edelson, the artistic director of the Exchange and the Orchard Project. "I am beyond grateful to everyone volunteering a day to help theater artists develop their next big ideas this coming summer at the Orchard Project."
The creative team will arrive at The Gramercy Theatre at 9 PM on Sunday, April 28 for a meet-and-greet. Each person brings a prop and a costume to inspire the writers. At 11 PM - after some singing, dancing, introductions, and "don't do this at home" warnings - the actors and directors go get some rest and the composers and book writers get to work. Completed musicals - with at least two songs each - are due by 7 AM. In the morning, directors, choreographers, and actors arrive for rehearsals. After a supersonic tech (with lights, costumes and sound) in the late afternoon, the audience arrives. The unconventional time constraints create a tremendous amount of energy. Although actors have only one day create characters, learn blocking, music and choreography, the musicals are performed without scripts in hand. The show starts at 8 PM, with an open bar courtesy of Monsieur Touton Selection and Diageo and VIP dinner from the wonderful new restaurant County, followed by an VIP after party at the Gansevoort Park Avenue Hotel.
Tickets for the gala are between $115 and $500 and all include admission to the show and open bar at the Gramercy Theater. To buy tickets, visit http://www.exchangenyc.org/24hm.
The 24 Hour Musicals was the subject of a recent documentary, "One Night Stand," which premiered in January and which will be running at The Quad Cinema in New York City beginning on April 26, 2013. The film has been a festival favorite and has run on more than 500 screens nationwide. More information on the movie is online at http://onenightstandthemovie.com/home.