Other Stuff

7 posts

Fifteen years? Fifteen years!

Fifteen years ago today I sent an email to someone I’d gone to grad school with to see if she might want to write a short musical together. My good friend Jeremy Jones-Kronenberg had the chance to direct a one-act for Prospect Theatre Company and wanted to do something new but the catch was that performances were in six weeks. I’d written a handful of songs quickly with Julia Meinwald so I reached out to her… And the rest is, well, my own personal history.

The last fifteen years have included 5 full-length musicals, 5 short musicals, 13 productions (including 3 world premieres!), 17 readings, 8 writers’ groups, 7 residencies & retreats, and over 200 songs (211 at last count but I’m probably missing some!) And we have a good four or five shows at various stages on the horizon that will hopefully carry us through another fifteen years of wonderful collaboration!

To musicals!

Songs for Today @ Weston Playhouse

Julia and I were thrilled to be asked to participate in Weston Playhouse’s Songs for Today series and to kick off a weekly release of new songs (and fresh looks at old songs) by friends and heroes like Kirsten Childs, Joe Iconis, Tidtaya Sinutoke & Isabella Dawis, Jenny Giering & Sean Barry, Adam Gwon, and Adam Guettel. We were asked to perform the song ourselves, so you can hear Julia’s beautiful vocals along with my animation…

This song was written both in conversation with the present moment AND for a new show we’re just beginning to write (called These Familiar Spirits) and we’ll share more info and more songs and videos from it soon!

Thanks to Andy Zinsmeister for his audio engineering, and Susanna Gellert for including us in this project. There will be some public Zoom conversations in the next few weeks, and I’ll share more info (or at least a recap) once those are on the books!

A Decade of Collaboration

Ten years ago today, I sent Julia an email.

We’d written a few songs together at warp speed after grad school that we both liked. So when my friend Jeremy Gold Kronenberg told me he was looking for a short musical to direct for Prospect Theater Company but only had 6 weeks to develop it, I asked Julia if she might want to apply our speed songwriting skills to a full project. We cranked out a 35 minute musical and loved what we wrote together. So when I read an article the next month about a group of high school girls in Gloucester, Massachusetts who were rumored to have made a pact to get pregnant together, I asked Julia if she thought it might be our first full-length musical.

Now we’re getting ready to start our seventh full-length musical next month while we’re out of town rehearsing for the world premiere of another show. And in the intervening decade we’ve been lucky enough to build a network of actors, singers, musicians, directors, designers, and friends to help us explore limitless empathy, terrible decision-making, building legacies, and growing up.

Here’s to what’s to come in the next 10 years of our collaboration!

Happy anniversary to my dear friends Jeremy Gold Kronenberg & Robert Anthony Jones!  Their beautiful wedding gave Julia and me the chance to write the kind of love song we never get to write in our musicals.