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Signature Theatre & American Theatre Magazine to Spotlight Design of OCTET

Signature Theatre & American Theatre Magazine to Spotlight Design of OCTET

Signature Theatre and American Theatre will present an in-depth discussion with the design team behind Dave Malloy's Octet, showcasing the creative collaboration involved in bringing this acclaimed chamber choir a cappella musical to life. The panel will include scenic designers Amy Rubin and Brittany Vasta, costume designer Brenda Abbandandolo, lighting designer Christopher Bowser, and sound designer Hidenori Nakajo. The discussion, which is free and open to the public, will take place at The Pershing Square Signature Center on Saturday, July 13 at 5:00 PM.

Commissioned and developed by Signature Theatre, the acclaimed world premiere chamber choir musical Octet, by three-time Tony Award nominee Dave Malloy (Natasha, Pierre, & the Great Comet of 1812) and directed by Annie Tippe (Ghost Quartet) played its final performance on June 30th in The Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre at The Pershing Square Signature Center (480 West 42nd Street between 9th and 10th Avenues).

American Theatre magazine is a publication of Theatre Communications Group, and this free event, to be moderated by Editor-in-Chief Rob Weinert-Kendt, is scheduled to coincide with the magazine's annual July/August "design" issue; this year the issue's special focus is on the science and art of sound design. This gathering culminates a series of public events on trends in the theatre field co-hosted by Signature and American Theatre magazine.

Octet is the first production in Malloy's Signature Residency, which will include three world premiere musicals by Malloy over the course of five years.

Featuring a score for an a cappella chamber choir and an original libretto inspired by internet comment boards, scientific debates, religious texts, and Sufi poetry, Octet explores addiction and nihilism within the messy context of 21st century technology. It is the first musical Signature has produced since its founding in 1991.

The cast of Octet included Adam Bashian (The Phantom of the Opera) as Ed, Kim Blanck (Alice by Heart) as Karly, Starr Busby (Off-Broadway debut) as Paula, Alex Gibson (SpongeBob SquarePants the Musical) as Henry, Justin Gregory Lopez ("Jesus Christ Superstar Live") as Toby, J.D. Mollison (X: Or, Betty Shabazz v. the Nation) as Marvin, Margo Seibert(In Transit) as Jessica, and Kuhoo Verma (The Big Sick) as Velma. Jonathan Christopher and Nicole Weiss are understudies for all eight roles.

The creative team included Or Matias (Music Supervision and Music Direction), Amy Rubin & Brittany Vasta (Scenic Design), Brenda Abbandandolo (Costume Design), Christopher Bowser (Lighting Design), Hidenori Nakajo (Sound Design), and Simone Allen (Assistant Music Director). The Production Stage Manager is Jhanaë K-C Bonnick and Casting is by Henry Russell Bergstein.

The world premiere of Octet is generously supported by The Lupin Foundation. Special thanks to The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust and The Michael and Betty Rauch Fund for Residency 5 for supporting the Residency 5 Program. Additional support for Dave Malloy's Residency 5 provided by The Frederick Loewe Foundation.

To purchase tickets for all Signature Productions call Ticket Services at 212-244-7529 (Tues. - Sun., 11am - 6pm) or visit

Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

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