NEW YORK CITY: Encores! Off-Center has announced its 2018 season, featuring three productions. This will be the first season led by co-artistic directors Anne Kauffman and Jeanine Tesori, who take the reins from the late Michael Friedman.
“This season is about the New World—songs of the moment of decision, loss and love, and the raising of the voice for change,” said Tesori in a statement. “It’s about three composer/lyricists—Jason Robert Brown, Michael Friedman, and Micki Grant—whose work shines a light on the fleeting moments of life, looking back at who we were, and forward to who we hope to become.”
The season will start with Jason Robert Brown’s Songs for a New World (June 27-30), created in collaboration with Daisy Prince, a song cycle that examines life, love, and the choices ordinary people sometimes make in extraordinary moments.
Next up will be the Civilians’ Gone Missing (July 11-12), written and directed by Steve Cosson with music by Michael Friedman, a docu-musical about real people and their accounts of objects they have lost.
Following will be Don’t Bother Me, I Can’t Cope (July 25-28), created by Vinnette Carroll with music and lyrics by Micki Grant, a celebration of African-American culture that examines race and politics through gospel, jazz, soul, calypso, and rock music.
“We wanted to celebrate the profound vision of our friend and colleague Michael Friedman, who is sorely missed,” said Kauffman in a statement. “Represented by this 2003 work with the Civilians, we’re certain that Michael’s voice will continue to break open what musical theatre can be and inspire audiences and artists for decades to come.”
Founded in 2013, Encores! presents Off-Broadway musicals that pushed the creative boundaries when they were first produced.