New Jersey Stage

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Musical Theatre Maven SETH RUDETSKY Joins LAUREN KENNEDY, TYLER MAYNARD, and SUSAN MOSHER In OBIE Award-Winning Musical Comedy [title of show] at George Street Playhouse November 16 – December 12

(New Brunswick, NJ) -– George Street Playhouse, David Saint, Artistic Director, has announced casting for its second production of its 2010-11 season, OBIE award-winning musical comedy, [title of show].  Musical theatre maven, musical director (he recently collaborated with Betty Buckley in a series of concerts), author and host of "Seth's Big, Fat Broadway" on Sirius/XM radio Seth Rudetsky, will play the role of Jeff.  Joining him in the role of Hunter, is Tyler Maynard from Altar Boyz, Broadway's The Little Mermaid and the new off-Broadway musical The Kid.  Lauren Kennedy, from Broadway's Spamalot, Sunset Boulevard and Side Show, and Susan Mosher seen on Broadway in Hairspray and on television in a recurring role on The L Word, play two friends of the collaborators.  Matt Lenz, who recently directed the Paper Mill Playhouse production of Hairspray, and also served as the Broadway production's Associate Director, will helm [title of show].   Jesse Vargas will music direct and play the role of Larry, the music director.  

"I am so thrilled to welcome this extraordinary group of artists, including my old friend Seth Rudetsky.  As this season has come together, a theme has emerged common to all five plays:  the importance of discovering one's true self and what one truly desires as opposed to what the world tells us we should want," said Artistic David Saint.  "The other prevalent theme in [title of show] is relationships and how they evolve as life happens.   The truly remarkable thing about this musical is how these very profound ideas are conveyed, and the show is truly hilarious and touching.  This is a perfect show for our audiences."

Creating the world of [title of show] are scenic designer R. Michael Miller; costume designer Michael MacDonald; lighting designer Phillip Rosenberg; sound designer Walter Trarback and projection designer Michael Clarke.

[title of show] is a musical comedy for anyone who has followed a dream.  When two struggling writers, Jeff and Hunter, make a commitment to write something new in three weeks, they quickly find that writing a comedy about the process of writing is more interesting than anything else they could write.  A show about four friends taking risks, creating art, killing Vampires (the dream-destroying kind, not the Dracula kind) – and how relationships change when life happens.

Tickets beginning at $25 are available now, as well as various flexible subscription packages.  Performances run from Tuesday, November 16 to Sunday, December 12 and Opening Night set for Friday, November 19.  To purchase, or for further information, contact the George Street Playhouse Box Office, 732-246-7717 or shop online at www.GSPonline.org.  Groups of 10 or more are entitled to a discount; for further information contact the GSP Group Sales Department at 732-846-2895, ext.134.  George Street Playhouse is located at 9 Livingston Avenue, steps away from public transportation and some of the area's finest restaurants for every taste and budget.

Lauren Kennedy (Heidi)  Broadway:  Lady of the Lake in Monty Python's Spamalot, Sunset Boulevard with Glenn Close, Side Show as Daisy Hilton, and Les Miserables as Fantine. Also, Cinderella at New York City Opera. Off-Broadway: Good Ol' Girls at The Steinberg Center for The Performing Arts and Vanities at Second Stage. London: Trevor Nunn's revival of South Pacific as Nellie Forbush. New works and premieres:  Vanities (Pasadena Playhouse), The Ten Commandments with Val Kilmer (Kodak Theater, LA) Lone Star Love (Seattle 5th Avenue), Waiting For The Moon (LENAPE), & The Last Five Years (Northlight).  National Tour:  Sunset Boulevard as Betty Schaeffer. Both her new album Here And Now and her debut album Lauren Kennedy Songs Of Jason Robert Brown are available on PS Classics.  She is also the Producing Artistic Director of Hot Summer Nights at The Kennedy.

Tyler Maynard (Hunter) made his Broadway debut 2002 in the cast of the musical Mamma Mia!  In 2003 and 2004 he appeared in several stage productions, including On the Record, and during that time  also worked shooting roles in the films Palindromes, Parents Wanted and Red Doors. In February 2005 Tyler landed a starring role in Altar Boyz, a musical which achieved significant critical acclaim. For his role as Mark, Maynard earned a Drama Desk Award nomination, and won Outstanding Breakthrough Actor at the Theatre World Awards.  From August to October 2005, Maynard took a break from performing in Altar Boyz to perform in the shows Miracle Brothers and The Great Big Radio Show!  Maynard resumed his performance in Altar Boyz in January 2006. From 2008 to 2009, he played Flotsam in the original Broadway cast of The Little Mermaid.  In 2010, he played Chad in the off-Broadway musical The Kid.

Susan Mosher (Susan)  Broadway: Hairspray. Off-Broadway: Suds, Back to Bacharach & David. TV: Nurse Jackie, Without A Trace, HBO's If These Walls Could Talk 2 with Vanessa Redgrave, Veronica's Closet, and a recurring role on Showtime's The L Word. Film includes: A View FromThe Top, The Wedding Planner.  Susan recently debuted her critically acclaimed solo show, The Great Daisy Theory.

Seth Rudetsky (Jeff) was a piano major at Oberlin Conservatory and spent years on Broadway as a pianist/conductor.  Musical career highlights: Artistic Producer/conductor for the Actors Fund Dreamgirls concert with Audra MacDonald (Nonesuch records) and Hair with Jennifer Hudson (Ghostlight Records, Grammy nom).  TV:  Legally Blonde reality show, Kathy Griffin's My Life on the D-List  and the requisite Law & Order.  Stage:  Arnold in Torch Song Trilogy at The Gallery Players, Sheldon in The Ritz on Broadway and Vernon opposite Sutton Foster in They're Playing Our Song. Seth is the Broadway host of "Seth's Big Fat Broadway" every afternoon on Sirius/XM radio, has a weekly column for Playbill.com and his newest novel will be published by Random House.

Matt Lenz (Director), Recently directed the Paper Mill Playhouse production of Hairspray.  He also directed the Hairspray national Tour and Toronto production  . Previously resident director of Disney's Beauty and the Beast on Broadway and tour and Assistant Director on Aida. Other directing credits include Dirty Blonde, Love! Valour! Compassion!, Scituate, Confidentially Cole, Hair, Twelfth Night, The Who's Tommy, Saint Heaven, The Amazing Adventures of Tense Guy. Member: Lincoln Center Directors Lab.

Born and raised just outside of NYC in Central NJ, Jesse Vargas (Musical Director/Larry) has worked internationally as a music director, arranger, and pianist. He is recognized across the country as music director/arranger for pop singer Clay Aiken. His work with Mr. Aiken has spanned from conducting Christmas concerts since 2004, to assembling, arranging, and orchestrating his latest summer symphonic tour. Jesse has and continues to work extensively in the musical theatre world as well. Music Direction credits include: Saved (Playwrights Horizons); Xanadu (First National Tour); Bare-A Pop Opera (Off-Broadway, Cast Recording); Dreamgirls (Critically acclaimed Philadelphia revival); Bright Lights, Big City; Barry Manilow's Copacabana; The Radio City Christmas Spectacular (Detroit-Assistant); A Chorus Line; Guys & Dolls; A Little Night Music; Little Shop of Horrors; as well as readings of new musicals Sunfish (NAMT); Rooms; Hurricane (NYMF); and Up In The Air (by Henry Krieger & Bill Russell). Orchestration/Arrangement credits include: Glory Days (Also Music Supervisor-Signature Theatre/Broadway);The Ritz (Broadway); Rooms-A Rock Romance (Off-Broadway, also Music Supervisor); Peep Show (Planet Hollywood-Las Vegas); Beach; Bright Lights, Big City; The J.A.P. Chronicles; Pippin (Goodspeed/Tour-Dance Arrangements); Junie B. Jones (Theatreworks);Chess (2003 Concert); HAIR (2004 Concert); Seth Rudetsky's Broadway 101; Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS Easter Bonnet Opening (since 2003); and others. Recordings include Rooms (Off-Broadway Cast Recording), Glory Days-OBC; Dreaming Wide Awake-The Music of Scott Alan; Keys; Hair(2005 Grammy Nominated Recording); and Bare-The Album.

Jeff Bowen (Music and Lyrics) wrote the music and lyrics for and starred in the Broadway musical [title of show] for which he won an OBIE Award, as well as a GLAAD Media nomination and, along with his cast mates, a Drama League nomination for Distinguished Performance by an Ensemble. He was awarded the Jim Owles Human Rights Award and was named one of the 100 most influential people in Out Magazine. He has written music and lyrics for Villains Tonight! for the Walt Disney Company, the Easter Bonnet competition for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, the Actors Fund 125th Anniversary Gala, the Vineyard Theatre's 25th Anniversary Gala, the 53rd Annual Drama Desk Awards, Broadway in South Africa, and Broadway Bares 18: Wonderland. He has composed music for several shows at P.S. 122 including Avant-Garde-A-Rama in Sparklevision, Hello, My Name Is Avant-Garde-A-Rama; Sparklefest 2000 at Dixon Place; The A-Train Plays; and the film Boat Mime. As an actor he has performed works at The O'Neill Center, Manhattan Theatre Source, Ars Nova, the Vineyard Theatre and appeared in the Actors Fund benefit of The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas at the August Wilson. He co-wrote and starred in the web series, "the [title of show] show" as well as scoring and performing its theme song. He is currently developing a half-hour sitcom for ABC. Jeff is a proud member of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, Actors Equity Association, the Writers Guild Association, the Dramatists Guild of America, Yale Dramat, and National Audubon Society.

Hunter Bell (Book)earned an OBIE Award, a GLAAD Media nomination, a Drama League nomination, a Jim Owles Human Rights Award, and a 2009 Tony nomination for Best Book of a Musical all for [title of show]. Other credits include the book for Silence! The Musical, the book for the 137th edition of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus, Bellobration!, and the book for Villains Tonight! for Walt Disney Imagineering Creative Entertainment/Disney Cruise Lines. He has contributed material to numerous benefits and events including the Easter Bonnet and Gypsy of the Year competitions as well as Broadway Bares, all for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. He is also a co-creator of the web series the [title of show] show on titleofshow.com. A finalist in the Warner Brothers Comedy Writers' Workshop, Hunter has written numerous spec scripts, pilots, and industrial films, and developed new works at the Dramatists Guild, the O'Neill Center, Irish Rep, PS 122, Goodspeed/Chester, Manhattan Theatre Club, the Neighborhood Playhouse, CanStage, and the Manhattan Theatre Source, and is currently in development with ABC television creating a new half-hour sitcom. As an actor, he has performed both on and off Broadway, at the St. Louis Rep, Great Lakes Theatre Festival, the North Shore Music Theatre, The MUNY, Dallas Shakespeare Festival, Cleveland Playhouse, Vineyard Theatre, Stages St. Louis, Alliance Theatre, Carnegie Hall, York Theatre, Coconut Grove Playhouse, and the Paper Mill Playhouse. In 2003, he won the Connecticut Outer Critics Award for Best Actor in a Musical. TV credits include, "Guiding Light," Disney's "Out of the Box," and Great Performances on PBS. Film credits include: Goodbye Baby, and Men Who Stare at Goats. Born in Tuscaloosa Alabama, Hunter is a graduate of Woodward Academy, a distinguished alumnus of Webster University's Conservatory of Theatre Arts (where he earned a BFA in Musical Theatre), an honorary inductee to the Yale Dramat, and a proud member of the Dramatists Guild, Actors Equity, SAG/AFTRA, and the Writers Guild of America.