The Concert, Hosted by Seth Rudetsky, Held Jan. 21; Mary Testa, Robin de Jesus, Nick Blaemire Among Performers
By Michael Gioia
Two-time Tony Award nominees Mary Testa and Robin de Jesus are among the artists taking part in The Concert, which launches David Sisco and Lorene Phillips' Directory of Contemporary Theatre Writers website, Jan. 21 at Second Stage Theatre.
Sirius XM Broadway host, actor, musician and Playbill.com columnist Seth Rudetsky hosts the evening, which begins at 8 PM.
Joining Testa (42nd Street, On the Town) and de Jesus (In the Heights, La Cage Aux Folles) are Morgan Billings, Nick Blaemire (Godspell), Jeff Blumenkrantz (A Class Act), Harry Bouvy (Silence! The Musical), Darius de Haas (Rent), Jason Gotay (Bring It On), Kenita Miller (Xanadu), Mamie Parris (Ragtime), Randy Redd (Million Dollar Quartet), Kristine Reese (Les Misérables), Bryce Ryness (Leap of Faith), Andrew Samonsky (Scandalous), Sheri Sanders, Elizabeth Stanley (Million Dollar Quartet), Lucas Steele (Threepenny Opera) and Sam Tedaldi.
The evening, which is described as "a concert for anyone interested in the future of the American Musical Theatre," highlights 19 songs by 26 of The Directory's writers, whose work is sung by Broadway artists.
Directed by Laura Josepher with musical direction by Matt Castle, The Concert features songs by Brad Alexander, Adam Mathias, Will Aronson, Bill Nelson, Jeff Blumenkrantz, John Bucchino, Patrick Cook, Frederick Freyer, Anna Dagmar, David Gaines, Charlie Sohne, Jenny Giering, Tom Gualtieri, David Sisco, Michael Kooman, Christopher Dimond, Daniel Maté, Chris Miller, Nathan Tysen, Peter Mills, Adam Overett, Rachel Peters, Nadav Wiesel, Sam Willmott, Michael Wartofsky and Barry Wyner.
Song titles include "Will You Know Me?" by Cook and Freyer; "It Just Wasn't Meant To Happen" by Wyner; "Hold My Hand" by Blumenkrantz; "Please, Belize" by Wiesel; "Without Your Love" by Wartofsky; "I'm Just Glad" by Gaines and Sohne; "Han Solo" by Aronson and Nelson; "I Don't Think of You (It's All Good)" by Maté; "You Don't Know Love" by Gualtieri and Sisco; "I Can't Walk On" by Giering; "My Sky" by Overett; "Rock City" by Alexander and Mathias; "Disappear" by Miller and Tysen; "So I Chased The Setting Sun" by Dagmar; "Blue Horizon" by Kooman and Dimoand; "Unexpressed" by Bucchino; "I'm Sitting Next to Estella" by Willmont; and "Mediocre Man" by Peters.
A portion of the evening's proceeds go to the Dramatists Guild Fund, the public charity arm of the Dramatists Guild of America. The funds support DGF's mission to aid and nurture writers for the theatre.
Rudetsky made his Broadway debut as Sheldon Farenthold in The Ritz. He is the afternoon Broadway host on Sirius/XM radio and a weekly columnist for Playbill.com. As a musician, he has played piano for more than a dozen Broadway shows including Ragtime, Les Miserables and Phantom of the Opera and was the on-camera vocal coach on MTV's "Legally Blonde: Search for Elle Woods." Rudetsky was also the artistic producer/music director for the first five annual Actors Fund fall concerts including Dreamgirls with Audra McDonald and Hair with Jennifer Hudson.
David Sisco is the founder and creator of The Directory of Contemporary Theatre Writers, and Lorene Phillips is the contributing editor.
The website is described as "an exhaustive resource for anyone interested in our current musical theatre's vast wealth of contemporary composers and lyricists. Vetted by respected veterans, vocal coaches, music professors and teachers, the Directory offers direct access to 150 composers and lyricists whose mostly unpublished or self-published songs are an incalculable treasure of opportunity for theatre professionals, voice teachers, students and anyone auditioning for a Broadway show who are interested in presenting themselves with a song written exactly for their needs." For more information, visit ContemporaryMusicalTheatre.com.
Second Stage Theatre is located at 305 West 43rd Street. For more information and tickets, call (212) 246-4422 or visit 2ST.com.
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