Original Musical WHAT'S YOUR WISH? Will Make Off-Broadway Debut At NYMF 2018
Thicket & Thistle, the New York City theater company comprised of actor-musicians who blur the lines between author, performer, and orchestra, are excited to announced that its original musical What's Your Wish? will make its Off-Broadway debut this July as part of the 2018 New York Musical Festival's Next Link Project.
When two teenage best friends get sucked into a magic storybook, they discover that getting home will take more than just a wish. With time running out, will Nicholas and Brian's friendship survive their perilous journey through Death Forest? Audiences who turn the page with Thicket & Thistle's What's Your Wish? can look forward to joining an exuberant cast of actor-musicians for an evening of music, humor and imagination.
What's Your Wish? was birthed out of a special co-creative process unique to Thicket & Thistle. Company members Kyle Acheson, Sam De Roest, Joshua Stenseth, Jonathan Eric Foster, Sarah George and Corley Pillsbury worked together to write the book, and at the same time Mr. Acheson, Mr. De Roest, and Ms. Pillsbury worked together to write the music & lyrics that accompany it. The 2018 NYMF production will be directed by Jonathan Eric Foster and stars company members Kyle Acheson, Sam De Roest, Joshua Stenseth, Juliana Wheeler and Lindsay Zaroogian, who all play a wide array of instruments to make up the shows musical accompaniment. The show was originally produced by Theatre Now New York in December 2017 as part of 3 musicals in rotating repertory.
Performances of What's Your Wish? will take place at The Acorn Theatre at Theatre Row (located at 407 W 41st Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues) according the the following schedule: Monday, July 16 at 8pm; Thursday, July 19 at 1pm; Friday, July 20 at 5pm and 9pm; and Saturday, July 21 at 1pm. Tickets for What's Your Wish? and the rest of this year's New York Musical Festival selections can be purchased online at www.nymf.org
Thicket & Thistle is a group of actor-musicians who blur the lines between author, performer, and orchestra. From writing the book and music, to directing, acting in and providing live orchestrations, to crafting props and puppets, they strive to create theatre that is inherently simple to produce, yet bold in its effect. They use their multi-disciplinary storytelling style to remind the inner child in all of us to greet the world with a sense of wonder. The company includes: Kyle Acheson, Sam De Roest, Jonathan Eric Foster (Artistic Director), Sarah George (Managing Director and Executive Producer), Corley Pillsbury, Joshua Stenseth, Juliana Wheeler and Lindsay Zaroogian.
Kyle Acheson is a composer, lyricist, and actor from Cincinnati, OH, and music director for Thicket & Thistle. His work has appeared at Ars Nova, Playwrights Horizons, The Incubator Arts Project, The Tank, Dixon Place, and at the NY Int'l Fringe Festival. He is a graduate from the Webster Conservatory of Theatre Arts. He trained with Grotowski protege Rena Mirecka at Double-Edge Theatre in Ashfield, MA and studied commedia, mask work, and devising with the San Francisco Mime Troupe. In 2014, he released his debut album, Sun River. www.kyleacheson.com
Sam De Roest is an actor, improviser and playwright. His most recent acting/writing credits include What's Your Wish?, Cop/Doctor, Crusical! The Murder Mystery Musical, and The Waterman: A Forgotten Cascadian Myth. Sam won "Best Actor" at Theatre Now New York's 2nd Annual Sound Bites 10-Minute Musical Festival for his performance in Thicket & Thistle's What's Your Wish? He is a graduate of Portland Actors Conservatory and the Curious Comedy Training Center in Portland, OR. Sam is a founding member of Thicket & Thistle and half of the improv duo RaeRoest.
Joshua Stenseth is an actor, aspiring good samaritan, and an especially gifted napper. He is a graduate of Minnesota State University in Moorhead, The UCB Theater in NY, and The Curious Comedy Training Center in Portland, OR. He has worked in many regional theaters, on television, web, and in film. NY credits include Allegro, Scarlet, and Zombie Strippers. Joshua is a company member of Thicket & Thistle and tries very hard to fill his role as resident 3-point shooter.
Lindsay Zaroogian is a graduate of the BFA musical theatre program at SUNY Fredonia. Credits include: Let's Misbehave: The Music and Lyrics of Cole Porter (Alice), Rent (Mimi), Fiddler on the Roof (Tzeitel), Marvelous Wonderettes (Missy), I Love You Because (Diana). She performed as McKenzie/The Fairy in T&T's What's Your Wish? at Fringe al Fresco and at the Access Theater. Most recently she played Rita in Cowgirls at the Pioneer Theatre Company, and joined the ensemble and band for The Waterman: A Forgotten Cascadian Myth at Ars Nova's ANT Fest 2016. www.lindsayzaroogian.com
Juliana Wheeler is an actress, singer, and writer from Ashland, OR. A graduate of Portland Actors Conservatory, she recently moved to NYC to join Thicket & Thistle. Since graduating, she has performed in musicals, Shakespeare, sketch comedy, and more. Most recent credits include Ashleigh in Oh F*ck! Oh Sh*t! Its Love! The Musical, Juliette in T&T's Cruisical! and, last summer, she spent a month at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, playing the titular character in The Alien Chicken Remembers Galatea.
Jonathan Eric Foster is a director, writer, and actor from Houston, Texas. He received a BFA in Musical Theatre from Webster Conservatory in St. Louis and moved to NYC in 2012. His recent projects include: The Waterman (Ars Nova) Friar in Romeo and Juliet in Bryant Park, Feste in Twelfth Night and Pisanio in Cymbeline (Drilling Company). In 2012 he received a Kevin Kline nomination for his role as Josh in the world premiere of FALLING. Jonathan's first feature film, TRYST, is now available on Amazon.com!
Sarah George is the executive producer and props designer of What's Your Wish? and Thicket & Thistle's managing director. She produced, hand-painted backdrops and created props for the 1st iteration of Thicket & Thistle's musical, What's Your Wish? (FringeNYC 2015, Anton Chekhov Festival 2015, Access Theater 2016), and Kyle Acheson and Sam De Roest's musical sensation, The Waterman: A Forgotten Cascadian Myth (Ars Nova's ANT Fest 2016). In 2017, she co-created and produced Thicket & Thistle's newest show, Cruisical! The Murder Mystery Musical (Loading Dock Theatre Co.'s Forklift Reading Series, New Light Theater Project's Darkroom 14 Showcase, Access Theater Residency 2017-18).
Corley Pillsbury is a singer, songwriter, and actor originally hailing from Austin, TX. She is a graduate of the Webster Conservatory of Theatre Arts, where she earned a BFA in musical theatre and also explored studies in directing, dialects, and songwriting. In addition to performing in numerous productions in Austin and New York, she is a founding member of Thicket & Thistle, co-writer/co-composer of What's Your Wish?, and has two albums of original music: Underworld (2013) and Simple Songs (2010). Corley currently resides in Sacramento, CA.
The New York Musical Festival nurtures the creation, production, and public presentation of stylistically, thematically, and culturally diverse new musicals to ensure the future vitality of musical theater.
Now in its fifteenth year, the Festival is the premier musical theater event in the world. The preeminent site for launching new musicals and discovering new talent, the Festival provides an affordable platform for artists to mount professional productions that reach their peers, industry leaders, and musical theater fans. More than 90 Festival shows have gone on to productions on and Off-Broadway, in regional theaters in all 50 states, and in more than 24 countries worldwide. Festival alumni have received a wide array of awards including the Tony Award and the Pulitzer Prize. In 2013, NYMF received a special Drama Desk Award in recognition of its work "creating and nurturing new musical theater, ensuring the future of this essential art form."
NYMF is the flagship program of National Music Theater Network, Inc., a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization. 2017 NYMF is sponsored by The City of New York Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment, PRG, TheaterMania, Clear Channel Outdoor and Village Voice, and is supported, in part, 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.