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East West Players Launches Musical Theatre Initiative

The theatre is seeking submissions from Asian-American writers.

LOS ANGELES: East West Players (EWP) and New Musicals Inc. (NMI) are partnering to launch the East West Players Musical Theatre Initiative. The company is currently accepting submissions from Asian-American musical theatre writers.

"Imelda" at East West Players in 2005. (Photo by Michael Lamont)
“Imelda” at East West Players in 2005. (Photo by Michael Lamont)

“We’re looking to work together to create an important, powerful piece of theatre about the Asian-American experience,” said Snehal Desai, the company’s associate artistic director, in a statement. “The show itself could be large or small, funny or dramatic, realistic or abstract, cutting-edge or traditional, but we’re hoping that it’s contemporary in its message and innovative in its storytelling.”

NMI is looking for projects in their early stages, which the organization will help develop through workshops and concert presentations. One musical may be selected for production.

Proposals may include excerpts from finished musicals or samples from works in progress. Submissions will be accepted through April 8, and the winners will be announced on April 20.

“Works which are very early in the process actually have an advantage right now,” said Elise Dewsberry, NMI’s artistic director, in a statement. “Even if the new work is just a single paragraph and nothing more, we would consider it.”

During their first collaboration with East West Players 10 years ago, NMI developed Sachi Oyama, Nathan Wang, and Aaron Coleman’s Imelda, a musical about the famous First Lady of the Philippines.

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