Julia Murney sings "Hell Hath No Fury" from "Monstersongs" at Rob Rokicki's 2013 concert at the Cutting Room in NYC. (Photo: Monica Simoes)

NAMT Announces 2018 Festival of New Musicals Lineup

Now in its 30th year of programming, NAMT’s Festival of New Musicals will present eight new musicals.

NEW YORK CITY: The National Alliance For Musical Theatre (NAMT) has announced its lineup for the 2018 Festival of New Musicals, which will take place Oct. 25-26 at New World Stages. The festival will kick off with Thank You, 30, a gala event to commemorate the festival’s 30th year. It is an industry-aimed event, although the public can receive passes by making a donation to NAMT.

A committee of 17 theatre professionals chose eight musicals to be presented in 45-minute concert presentations at this year’s festival. All production costs for the shows are underwritten by NAMT, at no cost to the writing teams. The lineup will include:

  • 17 Again (book by Marco Pennette, music & lyrics by Alan Zachary & Michael Weiner), an adaptation of the 2009 film starring Zac Efron and Matthew Perry, about a 35-year-old man who wakes up as a 17-year-old.
  • A.D. 16 (book by Bekah Brunstetter, music & lyrics by Cinco Paul), a musical with an R&B score about Mary Magdalene and her relationship with Jesus.
  • Gun & Powder (book & lyrics by Angelica Chéri, music by Ross Baum), about the true story of outlaws Mary and Martha Clarke, who were African American twin sisters who passed for white.
  • Monstersongs (book, music & lyrics by Rob Rokicki), a theatrical event exploring what it means to be a monster, through an immersive combination of graphic novels, rock musicals, live performance, and new technology.
  • Row (book by Daniel Goldstein, music & lyrics by Dawn Landes), adapted from the book A Pearl In The Storm by Tori Murden McClure, about Tori Murden’s attempt to be the first woman to row across the Atlantic solo during Hurricane Danielle.
  • The River Is Me (book & lyrics by Sukari Jones, music by Troy Anthony), about a young boy with dreams of becoming an underwater superhero and saving his mother from violence.
  • The Wicker Husband (book by Rhys Jennings, music & lyrics by Darren Clark), based on an original short story by Ursula Wills-Jones about love, redemption, and revenge, with folk music, storytelling, and puppetry.
  • XY (book, music & lyrics by Oliver Houser, developed with Hunter Bird), about an intersex man named Chris and his struggle to overcome the divide that blurs between his past and present lives as he falls in love.

“Thirty years is a tremendous milestone,” said NAMT executive director Betsy King Militello in a statement. “For each of those 30 years, our staff and committee has worked tirelessly to encourage, support, and nurture the work of musical theatre creators from around the world. This year, from over 226 submissions, we’ve assembled a stellar collection of stories and we are proud to be a catalyst for their development.”

The National Alliance for Musical Theatre is a nonprofit organization that aims to serve and advance the musical theatre community through the creation, development, production, and presentation of new musicals and forums for musical theatre professionals. It was founded in 1985.