The Irish Repertory Theatre (132 West 22nd Street) will present a workshop of THE PIPER, a new musical featuring music and lyrics by Grammy Award-winning composer Marcus Hummon ("Bless the Broken Road") and book by Michael Aman and Hummon. Michael Bush, whose credits include Leslie Uggams' UPTOWN DOWNTOWN and CACTUS FLOWER, directs.
THE PIPER is a Victorian melodrama told in the tradition of Irish pub storytelling. The musical is set in Boston's Scollay Square in the late 19th century, amid brothels, violent gangs vying for turf, and the insidious presence of a "strangler." THE PIPER follows the story of Jordan, a woman who runs a boarding house, her polio-stricken daughter who possesses magical abilities, and a mysterious boarder who becomes the primary suspect in the search for a serial killer.
The cast of THE PIPER includes John Armstrong, John Cariani (FIDDLER ON THE ROOF), Robert Cuccioli (JEKYLL & HYDE), Leah Edwards, Katie Emery, Wendy Fox, Brittney Lee Hamilton, Jeremiah James, Michael Marcotte, Marcie McGuigan, Doreen Montalvo, Christiane Noll (RAGTIME), and Jeff Williams.
The workshop features musical direction by Steven Ray Watkins and sound design by David Margolin Lawson. April Kline is stage manager; Lisa Dozier is line producer.
Nashville-based composer and musician Marcus Hummon earned a 2005 Grammy Award for Best Country Song for co-writing "Bless the Broken Road," recorded by Rascal Flatts. He has also co-written hit songs for such top country artists as the Dixie Chicks, Sara Evans, Wynonna
Judd, Tim McGRaw, Garth Brooks, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, and Alabama, among others. In addition to THE PIPER, initially presented as part of the 2007 New York Musical Theatre Festival, Hummon's musicals include WARRIOR (NYMF 2006) and AMERICAN DUET. His opera, SURRENDER ROAD, was staged by the Nashville Opera Company.
Michael Aman wrote the book and lyrics for BECOMING TENNESSEE (Richard Rogers Award Finalist, 2009). Other credits include the musicals SECRETS OF SONGWRITING, THE BALLAD OF BONNIE AND CLYDE (2005 NYMF), and LET ME SING! A MUSICAL EVOLUTION, and his play THE UNBLEACHED AMERICAN.
Director Michael Bush earned a 2009 NYMF Award for Excellence In Direction for HURRICANE. Other NYMF credits include Hummon's WARRIOR and THE PIPER, THE BALLAD OF BONNIE AND CLYDE, and TO PAINT THE EARTH. He is the former director of artistic production for Manhattan Theatre Club. He was associated with MTC for over 25 years and helped artistically guide more than 150 new plays and musicals. At MTC, he directed BASED ON A TOTALLY TRUE STORY. He was instrumental in the rebirth of the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's Cabaret & Performance
Conference (2010 Regional Theatre Tony Award), and has served as its artistic director since 2005. Under his guidance, the conference has developed over 50 new works, including [title of show] and THE STORY OF MY LIFE. He recently directed and conceived Leslie Uggams' UPTOWN
DOWNTOWN at the Pasadena Playhouse and helmed the Off-Broadway revival of CACTUS FLOWER. He is the artistic director and finale director of Fidelity Futurestage.