American Musical Voices Project: Part Three
And the Curtain Rises
by Michael Slade, Joseph Thalken, & Mark Campbell
Ever wonder how the first musical was created?
Well, if And the Curtain Rises is to be believed, the process was fraught with confusion, disorder, and a whole lot of humor. And the Curtain Rises, a valentine to musical comedy, is a classic backstage comedy about the creation of the first American musical. In 1866, producer William Wheatley finds his play a disaster, the actors in revolt, the costumes and scenery destroyed and his production in shambles. When a fire at the theater next door leaves a French ballet troupe stranded without funds in New York City, Wheatley decides to turn sour apples into apple sauce, adds a touch of music and dance—et voilà, the American musical is born.
“Signature’s American Musical Voice Project is the most ambitious embrace of new musical theater in the DC region.” —The Washington Post
George C. Boniface
Anna Kate Bocknek
Music and Orchestrations by
Colin K. Bills
Production Stage Manager
William E. Cruttenden III
Assistant Stage Manager