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2022 Festival of New Musicals

2022 Festival of New Musicals

March 18-20, 2022


Don't miss your chance to see the next big hit at Goodspeed’s 16th Festival of New Musicals! The Festival has launched more than 40 new musicals into the universe, sending them across the country, to Broadway, and around the world! Join us for a weekend filled with insider events, seminars, cabarets, and three staged readings of brand-new works as the brightest writers and performers collaborate to create the future of America's greatest art form.


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




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

*Please note that at the Festival Dinner, you may be seated at a table with another party. If you do not want to attend the dinner, we suggest purchasing the Silver Package.

Call the Box Office to order packages: 860.873.8668


Single Tickets: $25
Students: $15

Friday, March 18, 7:30pm

Book by Anna Ziegler
Music & Lyrics by Anna Jacobs
Music Direction by Vadim Feichtner
Directed by Jenny Koons

Barbara Newhall Follett was the child prodigy author of a celebrated novel about a young girl who runs away from her family and vanishes into nature. Twelve years after its publication, on December 7, 1939, Barbara walked out of her apartment with $30 and a light overcoat, and was never seen or heard from again. She was twenty-five years old. A House Without Windows is a meditation on the mystery of Barbara’s disappearance, the ways in which art imitates life and vice-versa, and what can happen when the life that seemed promised never materializes, especially to those for whom the line between reality and fantasy is already gossamer-thin.

A House Without Windows was developed in part at Rhinebeck Writers Retreat

Saturday, March 19, 7:30pm

Music by Lynne Shankel
Words by Sara Cooper
Music Direction by Britt Bonney
Directed by Ann Yee                   

HoT is a darkly comic, through-composed feminist adaptation of Helen of Troy featuring an all-women+ cast. It exposes and examines the commodification women face throughout our lifetimes as Helen is first sexualized, then held to unrealistic beauty and gender-based standards, and finally vilified and discarded - until she decides to stand up and take back her power.

Sunday, March 20, 1pm

Book, Music, & Lyrics by Abby Payne
Music Direction by Anessa Marie
Directed by Estefanía Fadul

A Wild West boom town, famous for the legend of a brilliant Gunfighter, is stirred up by the arrival of a young ranch hand on a mission to understand the truth behind the Gunfighter stories. As mysterious past and present meld and the Gunfighter returns to protect his long lost love, he and the townsfolk must face their ghosts in this new musical filled with humor and heart.


Exclusive Silver Package Event
Exclusive Gold Package Event


TICKET DISTRIBUTION | 5:30 - 7:15 p.m. | Porch Bar, The Goodspeed
All package holders will be able to pick up their tickets before Friday's staged reading. Seminar tickets will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis so arrive early to get your top choices!

A HOUSE WITHOUT WINDOWS | 7:30 p.m. | The Goodspeed

FESTIVAL CABARET: Timothy Huang & Friends | 10:00 p.m. | Gelston House •  
Composer Timothy Huang and his friends bring you an evening of new musical theatre songs! Huang's musical American Morning was the recipient of the 2016 Richard Rodgers Award, making him author the first and only Asian American to win the as a triple-threat composer/lyricist/librettist. Timothy has contributed songs to Not Working: A 2020 Song CycleThis Golden Day and Roasting on an Open Fire. Other works include Gates of Remembering, Peter and the WaveThe View From Here, And the Earth Moved, LINES: A Song Cycle, A Relative Relationship, Missing Karma, and Koi Story. You can listen to some of Timothy's music HERE.

Saturday, March 19

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 of the following seminars:

  • New Horizons: Theatre Technology Apples and Oranges Arts is a technology company devoted to infusing the newest technologies into traditional storytelling. Explore the cutting-edge developments that are pushing the boundaries of theatre as an art form.
  • The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant: The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant – or SVOG – distributed over $16 Billion in Federal Funds to arts organizations across the country in 2021. SVOG is the result of a congressional bill that was signed into law on December 27, 2020. Goodspeed received $3.7 Million through this program, making it the single-most important grant we have ever received. Goodspeed team members will take a look at what it took to get the funding, how we are using it, and how we plan to advocate for continued future funding.
  • The Show Must Go On: Guiding Theatre Through A Pandemic COVID-19 shuttered theatre doors in March 2020 and like many cultural and artistic industries, regional theatres saw significant losses. Theatremakers reimagined their art through digital platforms, often producing compelling new experiences for audiences online, yet many struggled without in-person connection and collaboration. National Alliance for Musical Theatre Executive Director Betsy King-Militello will discuss the many ways NAMT has served theatres across the country as we’ve navigated through the pandemic.

SEMINAR SESSION II | 11 a.m. | Gelston House or La Vita 
Choose one of the following seminars:

  • From Med School to Musical Theatre: An EPIC Journey You may think Homer’s Odyssey is a distant cry from what’s popular now… but not if you ask Jorge "Jay" Rivera-Herrans. Join the med student-turned-musical theatre composer to explore his new Odysseus-inspired musical EPIC and how he’s shared its developmental journey on platforms like TikTok and Discord.
  • Show Biz 101: Data-Driven Marketing The stage is set, the performance ready to go – but tickets need to be sold. So how can you attract the audience you need to fill the house and make the show a success? Jane Whitty of Capacity Interactive discusses how theatre marketers turn to customer data to predict their needs, desires and future behaviors. Such insight helps develop personalized marketing strategies for the highest possible return on investment.
  • Putting It Together: Little Girl Blue Many of you saw and loved Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical at Goodspeed by the River last summer. Now, Laiona Michelle's powerful new musical has made its way off-Broadway to New World Stages. Explore the the highs, lows and rocky roads of the show's development with Director Devanand Janki and producer Rashad V. Chambers.

SEMINAR SESSION III: The New Majority: Women in Connecticut Theatre | 12:00 p.m. | Gelston House Dining Room 
Three years ago, women were scarce in the top rungs of Connecticut’s major regional theater leadership. Today, they’re the majority. Hear from these female leaders of Connecticut’s Producing Flagship Theatres as they share their stories, struggles and triumphs in successfully guiding arts organizations, while recovering from a pandemic. The panel will include Melia Bensussen (Hartford Stage Artistic Director), Cynthia Rider (Hartford Stage Managing Director), Florie Seery (Yale Rep Managing Director), Tiffani Gavin (Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center Executive Director), Kit Ingui (Long Wharf Theatre Managing Director), and Goodspeed's own Artistic Director, Donna Lynn Hilton.

SYMPOSIUM: Goodspeed and the Racial Equity Movement in Theatre | 3:30 p.m. | The Goodspeed 
This event is free and open to the public. No ticket needed.
Seena Hodges and Ansa Akyea of The Woke Coach will lead an important conversation with Artistic Director Donna Lynn Hilton and Managing Director David B. Byrd about the racial equity issues that are impacting Goodspeed Musicals and the theatre industry at large. Through a guided discussion, audience members will begin to examine their role in supporting diversity, equity, inclusion, and antiracism individually and in partnership with Goodspeed Musicals.

FESTIVAL DINNER | 5:30 p.m. | Gelston House or La Vita
Enjoy a three-course meal with fellow Festival-goers at your choice of the Gelston House (view menu) or La Vita (view menu). 

HoT | 7:30 p.m. | The Goodspeed 

FESTIVAL CABARET: Joriah Kwamé & Friends | 10:00 p.m. | Gelston House
Enjoy a night of song featuring the music of Joriah Kwamé. Kwamé's career launched when he won Tony Nominee Taylor Louderman's WRITE OUT LOUD competition for "Little Miss Perfect." He received the 2020 ASCAP Foundation Cole Porter Award and was one of six ASCAP writers featured in their Songwriters: Next Generation showcase. He is penning original scores for two musicals alongside renowned playwright Lauren Gunderson: Sinister and Little Miss Perfect. Alongside Pasek and Paul, he wrote a song for Shawn Mendez in the upcoming Sony Picture Film Lyle, Lyle Crocodile. He is a 2021 Jonathan Larson finalist. You can listen to some of Joriah's music HERE.

Sunday, March 20

THE GUNFIGHTER MEETS HIS MATCH | 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.


VACCINATIONS OR NEGATIVE TESTS: All festival-goers are required to be fully vaccinated and show proof of vaccination or show proof of a negative COVID test from a COVID-19 antigen test (“rapid test”) taken within 6 hours of curtain time or COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of curtain time.

Everyone entering Festival events must wear a mask at all times, except when eating at the Festival dinner or drinking in the Goodspeed bar or outdoor areas.


Thank you to our Festival Sponsors

Friends of the Festival:
Shawn Amdur & Dale Woods
Lee Anderson & Russell Tait
Denise Bernardo & Eddie Muentes
Anne Sullivan Calanquin
Frank & Amy Campbell
Kevin & Bonnie Condrin
Don & Terri Coustan
Pam Foarde: Team AFA/Wm Raveis
Susan Gonsalves
William Gratz & James Bruno
Chris Joy & Cathy Velenchik
Stu & Ellen Kazin
Nancy Kline & James Trail
Jon Lukomnik & Lynn Davidson
Dave & Judith Macri
Ed & Sonya Morton Mangan
Roy O’Neil
Mark Planner
Jeff & Mary Riley
Hila & Saul Rosen
Margaret Saxe & George Vinick
Allyn & Karen Seymour
Bert Silverberg
Carl Thompson
Tracy Weed
E. Marie Wilson & Colette Trohan

Lead Corporate Sponsor:
With Support From:
Webster Private

The Jessica Waldman Thompson Endowment in Support of The Festival of New Musicals