APEX LEGENDS And TITANFALL Writer Makes Off-Broadway Debut With New Musical ASSISTANTS
Video game writer Manny Hagopian, known for writing memorable characters like the mischievous Mirage in Apex Legends or the lovable machine BT-7274 in Titanfall 2, opens his first Off-Broadway musical on June 22. Instead of a battle royale or intergalactic warfare, the game is...Hollywood?
"Hollywood is as much of a game as anything else," says co-writer Bryan Blaskie, also making his Off-Broadway debut. "You have to stick to a strategy, adapt to changes along the way, and make some inevitable sacrifices." Their musical goes behind-the-scenes and behind-the-desks of the unsung heroes of the entertainment industry. When TV's biggest showrunner announces a new career direction, it sends her assistant Tara - and the rest of Los Angeles - into a frenzy. Navigating the industry proves harder than expected for the Assistants as secret alliances are made, trust is manipulated, and emotions get in the way of business.
Hagopian's inspiration for the piece came from personal experience. "As a former assistant in Hollywood, I have witnessed and experienced all the struggles and stress people put themselves through just for the mere hope of bringing something they are passionate about to fruition. The dream of stepping off the bus in Hollywood and hearing 'You're a star!' is a fantasy. In reality, they say: 'no', 'try again', and worse...'let's take a meeting in a month or two. My assistant will be in touch.'"
Assistants premiered at the Hollywood Fringe Festival in 2015 where it was named Best Full-Length World Premiere Musical by StageScene LA. It was featured in LA Music Blog as one of the top five musicals at the Hollywood Fringe Festival, was named the #1 "can't-miss show" by TimeOut LA, and won 3rd place in NMI's search for New Musicals.
The original musical features many other Off-Broadway debuts. The cast includes Chance Brayman, Benjamin Diamond, Jamie Dillon Grossman, and Belén Moyano. C. Ryanne Domingues helms, with music direction by Patrick Thompson. Danny Viola is the production stage manager, with costumes by Caitlin Cisek, lighting design by Daniel Schreckengost, sound design by Adam Smith, set design by Leon Joosen, and orchestrations by Mike Meketa. Zackry Childers stage manages.
Performances at The Players Theatre are Thursday and Saturdays at 7:00pm and Sunday at 2pm (July 5 instead of July 4). Tickets are $42 - $62. To purchase tickets, visit www.assistantsthemusical.com. The Players Theatre is located at 115 Macdougal St, New York, NY 10012.