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The eighth annual music theater concert will feature brand-new, original musical theater songs written, orchestrated, and performed by Berklee College of Music and Boston Conservatory at Berklee students and alumni. Representing the diversity of theater and theater music today, the works feature pop, rock, jazz, punk, R&B, and rap, as well as more traditional Broadway fare. Songs take place in various settings, including on a pirate ship, in Kuala Lumpur, in a 1950s mental institution, and at a sex-ed classroom in a Catholic girls school.
Featuring a powerhouse band and an array of theater talent, the concert celebrates the winners of the Curtain Up Musical Theater Songwriting Contest. The winning songwriters were assigned another student to serve as orchestrator for the 14-piece band. This type of composer/orchestrator collaboration is the industry standard for a Broadway show, and many recent alumni of Curtain Up have gone on to work on Broadway productions, such as Hamilton and Dear Evan Hansen. Others have become Dramatist Guild Fellows, attended NYU’s Graduate Program in Musical Theater Writing, and/or attended the BMI Musical Theater Writing Workshop.
The concert is directed by Berklee faculty members Kevin Bleau, Jeri Sykes, and Michael Wartofsky, and choreographed by Berklee assistant professor Kristin Bohr and Boston Conservatory at Berklee Musical Theater Dance faculty Larry Sousa. The event is sponsored by the Contemporary Musical Theater Initiative and the Musical Theater Writing Minor.