Atlantic for Kids' 2015-16 Season to Feature World Premiere Musicals

Atlantic Theater Company is proud to announce its 2015-2016 Atlantic for Kids season including the world premiere musicals The Velveteen Rabbit and The Pirate La Dee Da.

The Velveteen Rabbit, a new family musical take on the beloved classic by Margery Williams Bianco, featuring book, lyrics and direction by Anya Saffir and book, music, lyrics and musical direction by Cormac Bluestone, will play Saturday and Sundays from Saturday, October 10 through Sunday, November 1, 2015. The Velveteen Rabbit is best suited for ages 3 to 9, while kids and adults of all ages are welcome.

The Pirate La Dee Da, a mixed up fairy tale musical loosely based on the original story featuring a book by Gabrielle Allan and Jennifer Crittenden and music and lyrics by Nate Weida, will play Saturday and Sundays from Saturday, March 19 through Sunday, April 3, 2016. The Pirate La Dee Da is best suited for ages 5 to 10.

Atlantic For Kids productions are performed at Atlantic Theater Company's Linda Gross Theater (336 West 20 Street between 8 and 9 Avenues) on Saturday and Sundays at 10:30am.

The Velveteen Rabbit

"What is Real?" asked the Velveteen Rabbit to the Skin Horse.

"Real isn't how you are made. It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."

...So begins the story of a very shy toy Rabbit made of velveteen and sawdust who longs to be loved. Newly adapted from Margery Williams Bianco's beloved children's tale of nursery magic and the secret life of toys, The Velveteen Rabbit takes us on the Rabbit's musical journey from loneliness to friendship, from loss to Love, from innocence to wisdom, and finally...to becoming Real.

Anya Saffir (Book, Lyrics, Director) Anya Saffir is a theater director, educator and native New Yorker. She has spent the last 15 years directing and teaching Shakespeare and Chekhov, Brecht and the British playwrights he influenced, as well as collaborating with playwrights on new work. Directing credits include Much Ado About Nothing at The American Repertory Theater Institute; American Sojourns: Three Plays by Thornton Wilder at the Moscow Art Theater; an all-male Romeo and Juliet with Tragedians of the City at the Chernuchin Theater ("Critics Pick": Backstage, Timeout NY, The Advocate); Brecht's The Caucasian Chalk Circle with Pipeline Theater Company which enjoyed a completely sold out run at Theater for the New City (winner of the ITBA Outstanding Show Award); Hamlet for Orpheus Productions (nominated for three New York Innovative Theater Awards including Outstanding Direction); The Illusion by Pierre Corneille at The Abe Burrows Theater at Tisch School of the Arts; Twelfth Night, As You Like It and Pericles: Prince of Tyre at Atlantic Acting School; original works by Tom Donaghy, Mike Dowling, Kate Robin, Heather MacDonald, Scott Organ and Jerome Hairston for Atlantic Theater Company's 10x25 Play Festival and New Works Series; a new version of Chekhov's The Seagull which she developed with translator Moti Margolin and The True Story of the Three Little Pigs for Atlantic for Kids which the New York Times called "one of the best children's shows of the year." Saffir has served as Artistic Associate at Classic Stage Company, Adjunct Professor in the drama department at Tisch School of the Arts at NYU and senior faculty member at Atlantic Acting School where she teaches advanced script analysis classes in Chekhov scene study, Postwar British drama and Shakespeare. She is a regular contributor on Shakespeare topics for National Public Radio's The Takeaway with John Hockenberry and was a visiting artist at The American Repertory Theater Institute at Harvard University in 2013 and 2015. She has worked with her collaborator, composer Cormac Bluestone, since 2005.

Cormac Bluestone (Book, Music and Lyrics, Musical Direction) Cormac Bluestone has worked for seven seasons composing musical numbers, lyrics and additional score for the television show "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" including episodes, Nightman Cometh, Frank's Little Beauties, The Gang Saves the Day, The Gang Makes Lethal Weapon Six and Charlie Work. He has also composed additional music for "Breakout Kings" (2011) on A&E. He has most recently scored the feature film, Tenured which had its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival, 2015. He also composed additional music for the feature film For Christ's Sake (2010) and is currently completing the score for the upcoming puppet feature, Gutboy: A Badtime Story. He has scored many short films including, The Botanist's Wife (48 Hour Film Project, Los Angeles 2010, Winner Best Music) and The Breakup Tour (2012 Tropfest finalist). In 2011, Bluestone won the Innovative Theater Award for "Outstanding Original Music" (second nomination in the category) for the critically acclaimed theater production of The Caucasian Chalk Circle. The score has gone on to be performed worldwide and the recorded performance of the show has become part of the NYU Tisch curriculum. Most recently, he composed music at Atlantic Theater Company for the world premiere of Good Television, A.R.T. (Moscow Graduate Program), Middlebury College and the drama desk winning Potomac Theater Project. From 2005 to 2009, he was a guest artist at Atlantic Theater Company's NYU program composing music for the schools classical productions with collaborator Anya Saffir. Bluestone has also scored extensively in the virtual space on a number of YouTube Partner channels including Machinima's critically acclaimed musical short, "Assassin's Creed: The Musical" as well as The Fine Brothers weekly viral series' Teens React, Elder's React, YouTubers React and Celebrities React. The four "React" series have collectively amassed over 1.8 billion views.

The Pirate La Dee Da

The Pirate La Dee Da is a mixed up fairy tale musical loosely based on the true story of a princess who wanted to break free from her traditional role, so she ran away from home and became a pirate. And not just any ordinary pirate, the most feared pirate on The Seven Seas.

Gabrielle Allan (Book) Gabrielle Allan started her career in theater and went on to write for film (What's Your Number? starring Anna Faris) and numerous television shows including "Scrubs" and the upcoming HBO show "Divorce," but it is being a mom to two boys that helped inspire The Pirate La Dee Da.

Jennifer Crittenden (Book) Jennifer Crittenden started her career writing monologue jokes for David Letterman. She went on to write for "The Simpsons," "Seinfeld," "Everybody Loves Raymond," and "Arrested Development." With The Pirate La Dee Da, she has achieved her childhood dream of becoming a playwright. She is married to the brilliant writer Bill Wrubel and they have two daughters.

Nate Weida (Music & Lyrics) Nate Weida is a composer and writer living in New York City. He has written nine musicals. His most recent work, Byuioo, produced by Pipeline Theatre Company and directed by Andrew Neisler, was presented at The Gym at Judson in 2013. Weida is also an active member of Judson Memorial Church where several of his shows, such as Commander Squish (2014), The New Hopeville Comics (2014), and I's Twinkle (2011-14) have been developed and performed. His music for Fordham University's production of Brecht's Life of Galileo was performed at Lincoln Center in 2011. He has been a regular musical director for Atlantic Theater Company's Atlantic for Kids Shows. He currently plays in a bluegrass band called "Great Dog Almighty" that performs regularly. He occasionally raps with the hip-hop group "Dragons."

Tickets

Single tickets to The Velveteen Rabbit and The Pirate La Dee Da start at $15 for Kids (ages 10 and under) and $20 for Adults. Group tickets also available. To purchase, visit www.atlantictheater.org or call Ovation Tix at (866) 811-4111.

Atlantic for Kids

Atlantic for Kids has presented fun, quality children's theater for more than 12 years. In addition to its weekend performances for families, Atlantic for Kids has welcomed thousands of NYC public school children to see weekday performances. These performances include talk backs with cast members and discussions about the themes of the play.

ATLANTIC THEATER COMPANY (Neil Pepe, Artistic Director; Jeffory Lawson, Managing Director) is the award winning Off-Broadway theater that produces great plays simply and truthfully, utilizing an artistic ensemble. Atlantic believes that the story of a play and the intent of its playwright are at the core of the creative process. The plays in the Atlantic repertory, from both new and established playwrights, are boldly interpreted by today's finest theater artists and resonate with contemporary audiences. Since its inception over 29 years ago, Atlantic has produced more than 150 plays including Tony Award® winning productions of Spring Awakening and The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Martin McDonagh); New York Drama Critics Circle winner for Best New Play, The Night Alive (Conor McPherson) world premieres of Almost an Evening, Offices, Happy Hour and Women or Nothing (Ethan Coen); the musical revival of Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill's The Threepenny Opera directed by Martha Clarke; Our New Girl (Nancy Harris) Bluebird and Harper Regan (Simon Stephens); What Rhymes With America (Melissa James Gibson); 3 Kinds of Exile (John Guare); Storefront Church (John Patrick Shanley); The Lieutenant of Inishmore and The Cripple of Inishmaan (Martin McDonagh); Body Awareness (Annie Baker); Romance (David Mamet); Through a Glass Darkly (Ingmar Bergman, adapted by Jenny Worton); Farragut North (Beau Willimon); Blue/Orange (Joe Penhall); Port Authority and Dublin Carol (Conor McPherson); Writer's Block (Woody Allen); American Buffalo and Edmond (David Mamet); The Cider House Rules(adapted by Peter Parnell); Good Television (Rod McLachlan); Celebration & The Room, The Collection & A Kind of Alaska and The Hothouse (Harold Pinter); Dying For It, Gabriel (Moira Buffini); Oohrah! (Bekah Brunstetter); Mojo, Parlour Song (Jez Butterworth); Boys' Life and The Lights (Howard Korder); Distant Fires (Kevin Heelan); The Lying Lesson, Missing Persons (Craig Lucas).

Atlantic has garnered 12 Tony Awards®, 15 Lucille Lortel Awards, 16 Obie Awards, seven Drama Desk Awards, six Outer Critics Circle Awards, three Drama League Awards and three New York Drama Critics' Circle Awards. Atlantic also operates The Atlantic Theater Company Acting School, which has an undergraduate program in conjunction with NYU, as well as a two-year professional acting program and a six-week intensive workshop every summer. Atlantic for Kids and the Educational Outreach Program partners with schools and teachers throughout the greater metropolitan area coordinating in-school visits of teaching artists and post-theater talkbacks.

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