Attention musical theater writers, it’s time for boot camp!

Stuck on Act II?  Need some structure to help with your structure?  Want a deadline to make sure your show gets finished on time?

Come to Musical Boot Camp!

The writers we talk to and who submit shows to us ask us for feedback, creative criticism as well as help with making sure they accomplish their goals on time (New Year’s Resolutions anyone?).

We’re big believers in the “group think” so we put our heads together and came up with a solution to help a whole bunch of you with similar issues at the same time.

So, by popular demand, my Director of Creative Development, the fabu Jane Caplow, and I are thrilled to announce the first Musical Boot Camp, a workshop for musical theater writers to help keep you on track and make sure you get your shows done, and done well.

The very first Boot Camp starts Wednesday, March 14th.  It’s a six-week workshop from 5 – 7 PM with a very select and limited number of participants.

To get more information and apply for one of the few slots, click here.

One note:  it’s going to be some work, so don’t apply unless you’re serious about getting your show or musical project to the next level.  And as with all of our seminars and workshops, when it’s over, we guarantee that you’ll be much happier with the state of your project than when you began.

And you’ll be meeting a lot of other passionate folks just like you in the process.  Project Building + Networking = Awesome.

Take The Boot Camp!

 

(Got a comment? I love ’em, so comment below! Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF:

– Win Two Tickets to see Venus in Fur on Broadway.  Click here to enter!

– Take a Broadway Road Trip from DC on 2/25!  Click here!

 

Rev up those engines, it’s speed dating time again!

It’s time to date it up!

One of our most successful events last year was our Collaborator Speed Date.

If you weren’t a reader back then, a CSD is when we gather partnerless composers, librettists, and lyricists in a room and introduce them to each other, in the hopes that they will make a match . . . and then, maybe a musical.

It’s a terrific opportunity to meet new people and hope that something clicks.  And who knows, maybe after a little bit of time together you’ll go all the way . . . to the Tony Awards! (Oh Sexual Innuendo, you minx.)

I’ve received a lot of requests recently to throw another speed dating extravaganza (translation = a room and some chips, salsa, soda and wine).  And, well who are we to get in the way of people looking for someone to spend a lot of late nights with, and fight with mercilessly, and make up with effortlessly, and hopefully become the next Ahrens and Flaherty.

So, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we’re doing it again!

Our next Collaborator Speed Date will be held on Thursday, February 16th at 6:30 PM here at my studios.

Registration is a must.  Last year we “sold out” in advance, so click here to sign up now.

You can register as a Composer, a Lyricist, a Librettist . . . or hey, maybe you even swing both ways (Oh there you go again, Innuendo . . . just when they think they are safe, you “pop up!”  Damn it!)

See you at the Speed Date!  And spread the word!

 

(Got a comment? I love ’em, so comment below! Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF:

– Win tickets to see Stick Fly on Broadway.  Enter here!

– Take a Broadway Road Trip!  From Mass on 2/4 and From DC on 2/25!  Click here!

– SEMINAR ALERT: Get Your Show Off the Ground Seminar: 2/18.  Only 2 spots left!  Sign up today!

I want a new “I want.”

There’s a classic musical theater axiom that states within the first fifteen minutes of any musical, the lead character or protagonist must have what is known as an “I want” song.  Click here for a more thorough analysis or here to read Stephen Schwartz’s commentary on the subject.

I’m definitely a subscriber to this Lehman Engel school of thought, and look for it in all the musicals I read, write and produce.

But lately I’ve been thinking that as much as I love the strength and determination of a “want”, what seems to be necessary for a musical is more than just a “want”.  I can want an ice cold coke.  I can want to take a vacation.  But that doesn’t seem like enough.

For a character to break out into song, the themes must be grander.  Love, adventure, immortality, revenge, justice and so forth are more the kinds of things necessary to start a musical engine.

So, I’ve stopped thinking about what a character wants . . . and have started thinking about what a character dreams.

Since audiences love to watch a character’s dreams come true (because it gives them the hope that theirs may come true as well) it seems more fitting to hear about these in the first fifteen.

It’s a subtle difference, mind you, but an important one in my “book”.

Dreams are worth dying for.  And it’s those kinds of grand themes that make for the most compelling musicals.

(BTW, if you’re looking for a great book on writing musicals, read Mr. Engel’s classic, Words with Music.)

 

(Got a comment? I love ’em, so comment below! Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

——

FUN STUFF:

– Win tickets to see Stick Fly on Broadway.  Enter here!

– Take a Broadway Road Trip!  From Mass on 2/4 and From DC on 2/25!  Click here!

– SEMINAR ALERT: Get Your Show Off the Ground Seminar: 2/18.  Only 2 spots left!  Sign up today!

Got a musical? Submit it to NYMF . . . but hurry.

The morning after one of his new shows opened, Hal Prince always held a production meeting for his next show.  It always kept him moving forward, and never allowed him to bask in the glory if his show was a hit, or get too depressed if his show wasn’t . . . because there was work to do on the next one.

It’s one of my favorite lessons from this book (which I highly recommend), and it’s something that I’ve adopted as well.

And I’m not the only one . . .

The New York Musical Theatre Festival just ended a few days ago. They haven’t even had their awards gala yet (which is on Nov. 6th, btw).

But they are already seeking submissions for next year’s festival!

In a schedule switch-up, next year’s NYMF will happen in July, which means the script-reading crew upstairs (NYMF and I share a building) will be hard at work soon enough.

So, if you’ve got a musical that you think could be the next Next to Normal, [title of show], or (yep), Altar Boyz, then submit away . . . but the deadline is SOON!

You have to send in your script by October 31st.  And that’s, gulp, 11 days away!

To submit your script, click here.

If you haven’t finished or even written your script, you’ve got 11 days to do it.  And don’t say “it can’t be done.”  What’s the worst that could happen . . . you don’t get in?  At least you’ll have a script, right?

That’s what Hal would do. (I may get post-it notes made up that say “WWHD”).

Good luck!

 

(Got a comment?  I love ’em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF

– Win tickets to Priscilla Queen of the Desert on Broadway!  Click here!

– Seminar alert:  Tune Up Your Marketing Materials –  10/29 & Get Your Show Off The Ground – 11/1

“These Three Things . . .”

Today is October 13th.

And there are three very special things associated with this great day.

– On October 13th, 1929, my father was born.  Today he turns 82.  Happy Birthday, Dad.  Thank you for giving me the gift of the theater.  Without you, I’d be a lawyer.

– On October 13th, 2007, four years (!) ago now, I started blogging.  And thankfully you started listening, and inspiring me to do more.  And I love doing more.

– And today, on October 13, 2011, after a two year gestation process, Godspell starts performances tonight, on its way towards its opening on November 7th.

Dad, Blog, Godspell.  What a trifecta.

October 13th is officially my lucky day.

If you’ve enjoyed my blog over the past four years, I hope you’ll come see Godspell.  And come to a preview.  For those of you who are reading this blog to learn more about how Broadway shows come together, you’ll learn a lot by seeing the show early, and then returning in a few weeks to see how it morphs, shifts and evolves.  As I said on the my last official entry on the Godspell Blog today, previews are the pupal stage for Broadway shows.  And well, I’m pretty excited about the beautiful butterfly Danny Goldstein and this sickly talented cast are cooking up at Circle in the Square.

Click here to get tickets.  We’ve got 6 shows this weekend.

And when you come, make sure you say hi.  I’ll be at all the previews, most likely wearing my red Godspell hat, so I’ll be easy to spot.  I’d love to say hello, and perhaps we’ll have some time to continue this conversation we started online four years ago . . . offline and in person.  And isn’t that what theater is all about?  I love blogs, and I’m thankful for this one . . . but we’re in the theater because we like to meet other people in (legal) dark rooms and listen to ideas.  I look forward to hearing yours.

So Happy Birthday, Dad.

Happy Blog Birthday, The Producers Perspective.

And I’ll see you at Godspell.

 

(Got a comment?  I love ’em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF

– 0 Days to Godspell!  Read the day-by-day account of producing Godspell on Broadway here.

– Tune up your marketing materials at my new seminar!  Learn more here!

– Win tickets to Chinglish on Broadway!  Click here!

 

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