Music Industry News Network [01-30-2018]
SESSIONS GIRLS BOOKS FEINSTEIN’s/54 BELOW-NYC- MARCH 6
New York - Three-time Emmy® Award-nominee Mia Moravis has a new musical, Session Girls, which bows on March 6 at 9:30 PM at Feinstein's/54 Below in New York City. Van Dean’s Broadway Records (who won last year's Grammy® Award for Best Musical Theatre album—The Color Purple) will record it that night for release.
Says Moravis, “Session Girls was conceived of in 2007, during a conversation with my friend Michael who, with his wife Liz, had written and staged his own works, which I liked because they were cleverly written, and the characters were predominantly female. At one point, I mustered the gumption to ask if we could ever work together, and he told me to write a musical about ladies my own age. So I wrote Session Girls.”
“The idea of spotlighting three ladies—a cellist, a producer, a backup singer—navigating the music industry was appealing to me. After all, I was one of them, and I wanted the characters to be fun, seasoned in their work, and dealing with life’s complexities—love and its travails involving sacrifice, infidelity, addiction, compromise, misconception, misrepresentation, self-control, and self-preservation, all while making sure the bright wasn’t trite, and that none of it was maudlin.”
Moravis also wrote engaging male characters: Music mogul Terrence Rand (played by Brian Charles Rooney), " who is beloved, and sometimes unjustly reviled throughout,” she says. "He owns a recording studio, and is amidst a harrowing merger with a major label, and is smitten with producer Joli (Lauren Worsham)." Rouald Finckel (Bart Shatto), is fiancé to fellow cellist Mariana (Oyoyo Joi) and, Moravis states, "must examine and endure the feared complexities of sharing love—and a matching career".
Ryan Andes plays studio engineer, Max Beft, engaged to a sweet and beguiling woman, but addicted to the beck and call of backup singer Cocoa (Lesli Margherita).
Moravis was raised in Scotland and her musical influences reflect the British '60s. "My Dad was in the Navy and was stationed overseas. We bought The Monkees albums while there and voraciously listened to The Rolling Stones, The Supremes, Herman's Hermits, Cilla Black, Petula Clark, The Shirelles, Lulu, Canned Heat, The Moody Blues, Des O’Connor, The Hollies, Dusty Springfield, Esther and Abi, The Beatles, and Donovan. My mother was a pianist, so we were also amidst her favorite classical recordings. Once back in America, inevitably I was crazy about Heart, and I discovered Tim Curry.
Regarding the show, Moravis says, "After quite a wait, and with further musical refinements, the music was finally in good enough shape to hand off to a new Michael ~ one Grammy® and Tony-nominated, Emmy® Award-winning Michael Moritz. Michael is music-directing the Session Girls show, and producing the live recording."
The cast includes Broadway veterans Lisa O’Hare, Emily Padgett, and Megan McGinnis, Feinstein’s/54 Below veteran Robbie Rozelle, and versatile actor/comedian Jeff Hiller. Moravis’s songs include the award-winning "Nothing To Brag About", "Painfully Self-Aware", "Miss Manners Got It Wrong", "You're Never A Shoe-In", and "If You Wanna Make Dough On A Show".
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