'Villa Diodati' To Be Presented at 45th Street Theatre as Part of NYMF

Villa Diodati is an official selection of the 2008 New York Music Theatre Festival and will be performed at the 45th  Street Theatre (354 W 45 Street). Presented by Diodati Productions, Villa Diodati has music by Mira J. Spektor, lyrics by Colette Inez, book by Colette Inez & Mira J. Spektor with additional lyrics by Byron, Shelley, Spektor & Wordsworth and will be directed by Rob Urbinati with musical direction by Thomas Carlo Bo.

An American couple visits Villa Diodati the location where Mary Shelley wrote “Frankenstein.”. Past and present intermingle as Mary Shelley; Percy Shelley, Lord Byron and others come to vivid life in this haunting tale of demons, obsessions and the creation of art.

The cast includes: Sarah Arikian (Ragtime, The ThreePenny Opera), Mark Campbell (National Tour of Mamma Mia), Elizabeth Cherry (The Fantasticks) , Lauren Hauser (Madame Bovary: the Musical), Sal Sabella (National Tour of Phantom of the Opera, LTC’s Babes in Toyland. The ceative team includes: Andis Gjoni (sets), Je Nash (Lights), Sidney Shannon (Costumes), David M. Lawson (Sound).

Performances are:

Monday, Sept 22nd at 8:00pm;
Tuesday, Sept. 23rd at 1:00pm
Saturday, Sept. 27th at 4:30pm
Wednesday, Oct. 1st at 8:00pm
Friday, Oct. 3rd at 4:30pm
Saturday, Oct. 4th at 8:00pm

Mira J. Spektor (Composer/ Book/ Lyrics) Chamber Operas & Musicals include: THE HOUSEWIVES' CANTATA (Lyrics by June Sielgel) produced Off-Bway by the legendary Cheryl Crawford, also in Long lsland, St Paul & Minneapolis;THE PASSION OF LIZZIE BORDEN (libretto by Ruth Whitman) heard in NYC, SUNY in Buffalo, Ottebein College & video taped by Prattt Institute; LADY OF THE CASTLE (Ms Spektor's libretto, based on an Israeli play by Lea Goldberg) produced in NYC & Long Island, in a German Translation in Berlin and in the Barbican Center in London. LADIES OF ROMANCE, a program of her One Act Musicals & Mini-Operas, heard at theThalia and Triad Theaters in NYC and Guild Hall in East Hampton. She has written Chamber Music and many French, German & English Recital & Cabaret Songs; Music Scores for Feature Films and PBS-TV and has recorded for Westminster, Concert Hall, Guilde International du Disque, Original Cast Records, Capstone and AirPlay. She is Producing Artistic Director of THE AVIVA PLAYERS who, since 1975, perform & present Chamber Music and Songs by Women Composers of the12th to 21st Centuries. Born in Europe, a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, her memberships include BMI, Dramatist Guild and League of Professional Theater Women. Her latest book of poems is THE ROAD TO NOVEMBER. Mira , Colette and all of us from the Villa Diodati, wish to thank BookHampton Booksellers for their generous support! Contact: mirajspektor@earthlink.net

ROB URBINATI (Director) was a theatre consultant for HBO. He received an M.A. from the University of Nebraska and a Ph.D. from the University of Oregon, and directed over forty plays at theatres across the country before returning to New York in 1995.  Since that time, Rob directed a workshop production of Hazelwood Jr. High, his first play, for the Directors Company. The play was then directed by Scott Elliott for The New Group, starring Chloe Sevigny. A scene from the play is published in Smith & Kraus's "Best Stage Scenes 2000." Rob curated Lunatics & Lovers: A Strindberg Salon for the Culture Project, and his adaptation of Miss Julie in Hollywood, which was part of that event, transferred to the 78th Street Theatre Lab. His adaptation of Mary McCarthy's short story, Cruel & Barbarous Treatment, which premiered at the Culture Project, transferred to Israel Horowitz' Gloucester Stage Company in Massachusetts (Ten Best Productions of the Year, The Boston Phoenix.)  Other directing credits include: Staceyann Chin's Border/Clash (Culture Project),  James Armstrong's Foggy Bottom (Abingdon), Pirandello's The Man With the Flower in His Mouth (Classic Stage Company),  Angel Street (Pearl Theatre), Maria Irene Fornes' Springtime (HERE), the premiere of Eric Bogosian's Griller (Lincoln Center Directors Lab), Kirk Bromley's Syndrome (Greenwich St. Theatre), and Bromley and Jessica Grace Wing's Lost (2003 New York Fringe Festival (Best Musical)).

Receiving  the 1995 Fellowship from the Drama League, has served on the Selection Committees for the Fall Directors Program, the Summer Directors Program, the New Plays Program, and the Drama League Nominating Committee. For the Drama League, he directed Inge's The Boy in the Basement (Westbeth), Max Sparber's Cruelties,  Tom Grady's Global Village and Sparber's The Older Gentleman.  Rob is Director of New Play Development at Queens Theatre in the Park. His play, Karaoke Night at the Suicide Shack, premiered at QTP directed by Dan Fields and Alex Aron. The People Speak, his adaptation of Howard Zinn and Anthony Arnove's "Voices of a People's History of the United States" premiered at the Culture Project as part of the Impact Festival. His new musical, Shangri La, based on the sixties girl group, opened at QTP in November.

Recently, he directed Suzan-Lori Parks' 365 Days/365 Plays at QTP and The Public Theatre. His new play, West Moon Street, based on a novella by Oscar Wilde, was presented as part of The Acting Company's Salon Series, with Dana Ivey and by the Prospect Theatre Company in New York directed by Davis McCallum. Rob also recently directed Jan Buttram's The President and Her Mistress at the Abingdon Theatre and Minstrel Show or the Lynching of William Brown at New Jersey Repertory Company. Three productions that Rob has directed, Lost, Syndrome, and Border/Clash, and one that he wrote, Hazelwood Jr. High, were selected to be videotaped for the Theatre on Film and Tape Archive at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. Rob is a member of the Dramatists Guild, and the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers He is represented by Bruce Ostler at Bret Adams Ltd.

Hailed as "the Sundance of Musical Theatre," The New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF) exists to revitalize one of America’s greatest art forms by discovering, supporting and promoting new musical theater artists, producers, and projects, and by introducing a diverse audience to the vibrancy of contemporary musical theater. Since its inception in 2004, the three-week annual festival has premiered more than 130 new musicals – many of which have gone on to award-winning productions in New York, in regional theaters and on tour in 38 states, and nine countries worldwide.  NYMF 2004 hit Altar Boyz has played well over 1,000 performances off-Broadway and is now in its fourth year at New World Stages; fellow NYMF alum [title of show] recently began performances at the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway.

Widely regarded as the essential source for new material and talent discovery, NYMF is the flagship program of The National Music Theater Network, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization, and is presented in association with BroadwayWorld.com, Production Resource Group and TheaterMania.com, and is supported by amNewYork, Barnes & Noble Booksellers, BroadwayBox.com, BroadwayInsider.com, Frank & Camille's Fine Pianos, HX Magazine, Jossip.com, King Displays, Queerty.com, Manhattan Movement & Arts Center, Metromix.com, The New York Blade, Next Magazine, Panasonic Astrovision, Queerty.com, Tekserve, TheMENEvent, VOGA Italia, and The Zipper Factory. NYMF is supported, in part, by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.

For more information please visit www.nymf.org

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