Thursday, February 23, 2012

Songs You Should Know from People You Should Also Know

First of all, have you seen a show lately? If you're in New York and love musical theatre, there is a ton of exciting stuff going on right now/coming up, from Carrie (yes, Carrie the musical) to Ryan Scott Oliver and Matthew Murphy's 35 MM, from The Total Bent to the next show at the D-Lounge. If you're looking for a straight play recommendation, I haven't been able to stop thinking about Leslye Headland's Assistance at Playwrights Horizons and Paula Vogel's How I Learned to Drive at Second Stages. Of course, musicals have also been a huge part of my February, and while I know it's been a little while since I last posted on here, I promise there's a lot of exciting stuff to come (and more posts about some of the things I've seen this month).

So to go back in time for a bit, I wanted to revisit an awesome night of songs by new writers that I saw about two weeks ago. Entitled "Songs You Should Know," Libra Theatre Company presented a night of new and rarely sung tunes by amazing composers: Brad Alexander, Sam Carner and Derek Gregor, Joshua H. Cohen and Lavell Blackwell, Bobby Cronin, Adam Gwon, Caleb Hoyer, Joe Iconis, Russ Kaplan and Sara Wordsworth, Pete Mills, and Will Reynolds. The evening was hosted by the wonderful Jennifer Ashley Tepper and Jeremy Morse, and there was a lot of great banter throughout the evening between each of the amazing musical performances. Here are some highlights:

When asked who he would like to star in a show with someday, Jeremy Jordan shared that he wants to be in a musical where Mandy Patinkin sings him a lullaby. (Above, he sings "If the World Looked Like You" by Will Reynolds.)

J. Austin Eyer sang Will Reynold's beautiful "Like That For You" that left my jaw on the floor.

Blair Goldberg told the audience about how she got a massage alongside Dick Latessa before taking the mic to sing a great Adam Gwon song ("So Over").

Not only did Melanie Field kill this song ("Lullaby" by Russ Kaplan and Sara Wordsworth), but Russ Kaplan also floored everyone when he revealed the song is from a new musical based on a woman who assumes her daughter's identity.

You can check out more clips at Libra's Youtube channel, and even then there are a lot of other songs that didn't make it up there (including a song by Joe Iconis about a Naked Korean Girl... sad you missed out now, aren't you?). What the night cemented for me, at least, was the sense of community among new artists, both writers and performers, and it was really sort of magical to be a part of that. The audience really enjoyed every minute, and I can't agree more that all of these songs, people, and shows should be known by everyone.

1 comment:

Max Kovalchuk said...

Musical theater fans! Check out the new show Smash if you haven't seen it yet, you will love it.