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14th Annual Festival of New Musicals

14th Annual Festival of New Musicals

JAN 18-20, 2019


Every musical got its start somewhere—for many, it was at Goodspeed. Don't miss your chance to see the next big hit at Goodspeed's 14th Annual Festival of New Musicals. Hundreds of musical theatre lovers will gather on the Goodspeed campus for staged readings of brand new works as the brightest new writers and performers collaborate to create the future of America's greatest art form. It's something different...come join us!


The Peculiar Tale Of The Prince Of Bohemia And The Society Of Desperate Victorians

FRIDAY, JAN 18, 7:30 PM

Book and Lyrics by Becca Anderson & Dan Marshall
Music by Julian Blackmore  

When Prince Florizel learns that his father the King of Bohemia is dead, he seeks to escape the throne. He and his chaperone Colonel Geraldine are invited to join a secret society - The Suicide Club. Club members play a deadly card game nightly with higher stakes than the Prince has ever known. Realizing the deck is stacked against them, the Prince and Geraldine become inextricably linked to the club's members in a darkly hilarious new musical.

The Proxy Marriage


Book & Lyrics by Michele Lowe
Music & Lyrics by Adam Gwon
Adapted from THE PROXY MARRIAGE by Maile Meloy

In Montana, a lawyer performs proxy marriages – primarily of military couples, in which both parties are not physically present. The lawyer’s popular teenage daughter Bridey and her awkward friend William stand in for the bride and groom. When senior year is done, they leave Montana to pursue their separate dreams. Over the next 13 years, life pulls them apart and then together again, and as the world changes, so do William and Bridey. In time they realize that perhaps what they were longing for all along was each other.


SUNDAY, JAN 20, 1:00 PM 

Music, Book and Lyrics by Mark Sonnenblick

Wanda Lee, a young woman in the fictional town of Braxton, Ohio, feels totally lost. Paul, a football star who became addicted to painkillers after a career-ending injury, feels much the same. When Wanda Lee's ten-year-old brother tells both of them he's been recruited for a divine mission, Paul and Wanda Lee must decide whether to bring him to his senses or join him on the journey. A story about addiction (not just to drugs) and belief (not just in religion), Devotion is a heartfelt, uplifting musical set against an American crisis of community.


Goodspeed's Festival Packages get you access to exclusive events all weekend long!

Call the Box Office to order packages: 860.873.8668




• 1 Ticket for all 3 Staged Readings   • 1 Ticket for all 3 Staged Readings
• CHOOSE: Friday or Saturday Cabaret
  • 2 Symposiums
• 3 Seminar Sessions
  • Meet the Writers Q&A
• CHOOSE: Festival Dinner at Gelston House or La Vita
• 2 Symposiums
• Meet the Writers Q&A

Single Tickets: $25
Students: $15 (call the Box Office to order)


Exclusive Silver Package Event
Exclusive Gold Package Event


TICKET DISTRIBUTION | 5:00 - 7:15 p.m. | Porch Bar, The Goodspeed
All Gold Package holders will be able to pick up their Seminar tickets before Friday's staged reading. Tickets will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis so arrive early to get your top choices!


FESTIVAL CABARET: Douglas Waterbury-Tieman | 10:00 p.m. | Gelston House
Douglas Waterbury-Tieman is an actor, writer and professional fiddle player in NYC. Douglas’ writing for the stage was seen at Penn State as part of their Nu Musical Theatre Summer Festival with a staged reading of his script for Deep Water Ballad. His Off-Broadway acting credits include The Robber Bridegroom (Roundabout) and Charles Mee’s soot and spit. For this Cabaret, Douglas will play selections from his new blue grass musical Johnny and the Devil’s Box, which he is currently developing in a Goodspeed residency.

Saturday, January 19

SEMINAR TICKET DISTRIBUTION | 9:00 - 12:00 p.m. | Gelston House Lobby

SEMINAR SESSION I | 10:00 a.m. | Gelston House or La Vita
Choose One:

  • Career Leap: From Actor to Director:Some of our favorite directors gather to share stories about what it takes to make the transition from successful performer to successful director.
  • Electronic Music Integration in Hamilton and Beyond: Drum loops, scratches and other familiar hip hop sounds have made their way to Broadway, thanks to the work of Scott Wasserman. He’ll show how electronic music is programmed and integrated into a live orchestra in shows like HamiltonDear Evan Hansen, and …Great Comet of 1812.
  • Designing for the Goodspeed Stage: Get the inside scoop on the challenges and thrills of designing sets for the Goodspeed stage. No one knows it better than acclaimed Scenic Designer and professor Howard Jones who has designed 9 of our musicals over the last 20 years.

SEMINAR SESSION II | 11:00 a.m. | Gelston House or La Vita
Choose One:

  • Generation Next: Becoming A Producer: It’s a long road to becoming a successful producer. Our panel of future A-listers discuss how they got there, where they’re going and what their working on.
  • Theatre’s New Frontier: Multimedia consultant Alycia Yerves talks about how social media can be a vital tool for theater and explains how internet fans took the musical Be More Chill from modest regional theater hit to online phenomenon to Broadway.
  • Leading With Inclusion: What Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Mean To Theatre: Get a deeper understanding of the industry’s latest efforts to include and encourage all people to be a part of it.

SEMINAR SESSION III | 12:00 p.m. | Gelston House or La Vita
Choose One:

  • Backstage Pass To Broadway Veteran Broadway press agent Susan L. Schulman shares true tales from her new book that turns the spotlight on what goes on behind the show curtain. Book signing to follow.
  • From Audio Books To Audio...Plays? Emilia LaPenta is the Producer of New Play Development and Commissions at Audible, Amazon.com’s audiobook company. She’ll discuss Audible’s new theater division and the similarities and differences of producing theater for an audible format.
  • Designing for the Goodspeed Stage: Get the inside scoop on the challenges and thrills of designing sets for the Goodspeed stage. No one knows it better than acclaimed Scenic Designer and professor Howard Jones who has designed 9 of our musicals over the last 20 years.

MOVIE SCREENING: Goodspeed's The Story of My Life | 1:00 - 2:30 p.m. | The Alice Studio
Written by Goodspeed favorites Bartram and Hill, this musical was developed at Goodspeed’s Terris Theatre in 2008 and opened on Broadway later that year.

LIBRARY EXHIBIT: Broadway and Beyond: New Musical Development at Goodspeed | 1:00 - 2:30 p.m. | The Scherer Library

SYMPOSIUM I: The Art of Adaptation: Truth to Fiction | 3:00 p.m. | The Goodspeed
Goodspeed Artistic Associate, Anika Chapin, and an esteemed panel of writers discuss the process and the pitfalls of adapting a true story into musical theatre fiction.

SYMPOSIUM II: Rise Up!: Broadway and American Society | 4:00 p.m. | The Goodspeed
An interview with Chris Jones, one of America’s best-known daily theatre critics, about his new book that tells the story of Broadway’s renaissance from the darkest days of the AIDS crisis, via the disaster that was Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark through the unparalleled success of Hamilton. 

FESTIVAL DINNER | 5:30 p.m. | Gelston House or La Vita
Enjoy a three-course meal with fellow Festival-goers. View Gelston House Menu | View La Vita Menu

THE PROXY MARRIAGE | 7:30 p.m. | The Goodspeed 

FESTIVAL CABARET: Shaina Taub | 10:00 p.m. | Gelston House
Shaina Taub is a songwriter and performer who has the won the Jonathan Larson Grant, the Fred Ebb Award and the Billie Burke Ziegfeld Award, and has an ongoing concert residency at Joe’s Pub. She starred in her musical adaptation of Twelfth Night in the Public Theater’s Free Shakespeare in the Park this past summer. Shaina is currently writing a musical about the American women’s suffrage movement and she’s writing lyrics for the upcoming musical of The Devil Wears Prada, with music by Sir Elton John and book by Paul Rudnick.

Sunday, January 20

DEVOTION | 1:00 p.m. | The Goodspeed

MEET THE WRITERS Q&A | 3:30 p.m. | The Goodspeed  
Gain insight into the inspirations and processes of the writers.

Lead Corporate Sponsor:
 RisCassi & Davis
With Support From:
Burry Fredrik Foundation
ARS Foundation
Noel Coward Foundation 
Webster Private

Friends of the Festival
Shawn Amdur & Dale Woods
Denise Bernardo & Eddie Muentes
Anne Calanquin
Amy & Frank Campbell
Kevin Condrin
Don & Terri Coustan
Susan Gonsalves
William Gratz & James Bruno
John & Joanna Hamby
Regina Hausmann
Peter Hoyle
Chris Joy & Cathy Velenchik
Stu & Ellen Kazin
Pat & Koen Loeven
Jon Lukomnik & Lynn Davidson
Dave & Judith Macri
Ed & Sonya Mangan
Linda Morasutti & Robert Lee
Mark Planner
Jeff Riley & Mary Wilson
Anne Rothstein & Jane Hellman
Megan & H. William Stine
Russ Tait & Lee Anderson
Jessica & Carl Thompson
George Vinick & Margaret Saxe
Chris & Tracy Weed
Marie Wilson & Colette Trohan

Goodspeed Musicals Max Showalter Center for Education in Musical Theatre