The Brain From Planet X
An affectionate and hilarious send-up of bad 50s sci-fi movies, The Brain From Planet X tells the story of an alien invasion circa 1958. A Brain and its two alien cohorts, Zubrick and Yoni, arrive on Earth and plan to take over the San Fernando Valley --starting with the happy nuclear family, the Bunsons. It's the first step on the road to their quest of taking over the entire planet and to destroying the family unit. It's tuneful, toe-tapping, and terrifyingly fun.
Amy Bodnar (Joyce)
Amy just closed in the off-Broadway musical Sessions. On Broadway, she's appeared as Evelyn Nesbitt in Ragtime, and Laurie in Trevor Nunn's production of Oklahoma! She's performed in the World and/or American premieres of Between The Lines, Martin Guerre, Just So, and the LA company of Ragtime. National tours include Scarlet Pimpernel and Sunset Blvd. Regionally, Miss Bodnar has been seen as Amneris in Aida, Babette in Beauty and The Beast, Ellen in Miss Saigon, Grace in both Annie and Annie Warbucks, Lucy in Jekyll and Hyde and many others. On TV, she's been seen on "As The World Turns", "David Letterman", as well as the Tony Award broadcasts of 1998 and 2002.
Benjamin Clark (Narrator/Professor Leder)
Benjamin Clark is happy to be performing in The Brain From Planet X again in his first visit to the Big Apple. He recently performed in Shakespeare by the Sea's productions of The Merchant of Venice as Bassanio and Lucentio in The Taming of the Shrew. Other projects include the NoHo Cabaret as well as founding, directing, and hosting the Little Fish Theatre's improv group. He is a proud recent graduate of Los Angeles Theatre Academy where he appeared in Voir Dire, The Sandstorm, Fuddy Meers, Take Me Out, and many others. This show is for his brother and sisters.
Paul Downs Colaizzo (Rod)
Paul Downs Colaizzo - NYMF debut! National Tours: Great Expectations. New York: Mabou Mines' The Spider Operas, The Dybbuk (dir. Liz Swados), Hair at The Skirball Center, and The Yellow Wood, among others. Most recently: Gary in Snakebit. Regional: Merrily We Roll Along. Dozens of readings, workshops, national commercials, recordings. BFA - NYU Tisch. Proud member of Actors' Equity. Thanks to God, family, friends, and Amsterdam. www.pauldownscolaizzo.com
Rob Evan (Fred)
Rob Evan starred in the original Broadway cast of Jekyll & Hyde, playing the title roles for three years and over 600 performances. His rendition of "This Is the Moment" has been performed at numerous prestigious events including the 2001 Inaugural Gala for President George W. Bush, the Millennium Independence Day US Naval Revue aboard the USS JFK for President Clinton, the Millennium World Forum Conference with guest speaker Mikhail Gorbachev, the 1998 Goodwill Games, the New York City Mayor's Inaugural Gala, the 1998 and 1999 NY Yankees World Series Celebration at City Hall, The Georgia Music Hall of Fame Awards Telecast, the Today Show, and Monday Night Football. Rob regularly stars around the world in the all-new Jekyll & Hyde:The Concert, where he returned from a 16-show run in Seoul, South Korea's Olympic Hall last spring. Currently, Rob just finished starring on Broadway in Disney's Tarzan playing the role of Kerchak at the Richard Rodgers Theater. Rob also appeared on Broadway as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables, and was chosen to lead the critically acclaimed National Touring Company to its history-making stop on Broadway. Most recently, he starred as the sadistic Orin Scrivello D.D.S. in Little Shop of Horrors with Joey Fatone from *NSYNC on Broadway. Rob, also, had the pleasure of singing the role of the Count von Krolock in Jim Steinman's Dance of the Vampires at the Minksoff Theater. Off-Broadway, Rob created the roles of The Dancin' Kid in Johnny Guitar and the hero Miles Hendon in The Prince and the Pauper.
Merrill Grant (Donna)
Merrill originated the role of Donna in the The Brain from Planet X in Los Angeles and also recorded the cast album. She is thrilled to be reprising the role and making her N.Y.M.F. debut. Last month she originated the lead role in Slammer, a new women in prision musical, at Fringe Festival. Regional: leads in West Side Story, The Fantastiks, The Mikado, Wizard of Oz, Guys and Dolls, Fiddler on the Roof, A Chorus Line, and Evita (Mistress). Tours: The Music Man, Cosi fan tutte (Despina), and Hansel and Gretel, as well as operetta concerts in Austria. She's a member of Third Eye Theatre Company (www.thirdeyetheatreco.com) "Thank you to all my excellent teachers and mentors who have helped me and to my family for their support." Proud member of Actor's Equity. www.merrillgrant.us
Chad Harlow (Various Roles/Ensemble)
Chad is thrilled to me making his NYMF debut. National tours: Show Boat, 42nd Street, The Music Man, and Cinderella. Regional: Irving Berlin's White Christmas (Ordway, St. Paul), Singin' in the Rain (Goodspeed), Thoroughly Modern Millie (Barter) and 42nd Street (Mill Mountain). Some favorites credits: Bobby in Crazy for You, Simeon in Joseph's Dreamcoat, Sparky in Forever Plaid, and Mickey/Mambo Dancer in Damn Yankees.
Joe Jackson (Various Roles/Ensemble)
Joe Jackson (Ensemble) - Joe is excited to break his NYMF cherry with such a meaty piece! This Atlanta native and Ole Miss grad has worked nationwide on various tours and regional gigs. His favorites include: Dr. Dolittle (w/ Tommy Tune), Carousel (Walnut Street Theatre), She Loves Me (Arena Stage), & Camelot (North Shore Music Theatre). Joe would like to thank his family and friends for their wonderful, and most of all his inspiring wife for putting up with a Nut!
Naomi Kakuk (Newscaster/Ensemble)
Broadway: The Producers, The Frogs (orig. casts and recordings). 1st National Tours: Spamalot, Annie...Gun, Dr. Dolittle, CATS (Cassandra, IV nat.). Film: The Producers, The Musical (Stenographer, Pearl Girl, Waitress) BFA in Ballet, University of Utah.
Cason Murphy (Zubrick)
has been performing on stage since age 3 when an impromptu "rabbit-pulling-out-of-his-hat" gave him a taste of fame - and he hasn't had the good sense to get off yet. He moved out to Los Angeles 3y ears ago to attend Los Angeles City College's Theatre Academy, where among other shows, he created the role of Zubrick in the world premiere of The Brain From Planet X. Cason is thrilled to bring Zubrick to NYMF in his New York stage debut, and sends love to the two most important women in his life- his Mammy and his Honey Grace.
Denise Payne (Newscaster/Ensemble)
NY credits: Young Emily in Follies with City Center Encores! National tours: Doctor Dolittle (with Tommy Tune), 42nd Street, Footloose, and Titanic. Regional: Liza in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Papermill, TUTS, North Shore Music Theatre, TOTS), Ruby in Dames At Sea (Helen Hayes Theatre Co./Queens Theatre in the Park), Marty in Grease (DCT), Hope in Anything Goes (Artpark), Guys and Dolls (Macau, China).
Barry Pearl (The Brain)
is a 46 year theatre veteran, who's done hundreds of stage productions, including Broadway's BYE BYE BIRDIE, OLIVER! and THE PRODUCERS; the first national tour of GREASE, regional productions of KISS ME KATE, THE IMMIGRANT, NOISES OFF, TALLEY'S FOLLY, GUYS AND DOLLS, CRAZY FOR YOU, FORUM, LITTLE SHOP, FIDDLER, you name it; to scores of television shows ranging from "ER" to "DAYS OF OUR LIVES". He's best known for playing in Paramount's hit film, GREASE, and kids know Barry as Professor Tinkerputt from NBC's special, "BEDTIME WITH BARNEY: IMAGINATION ISLAND", and the live stage show, BARNEY'S BIG SURPRISE, as well as the videos of both. A Drama-Logue, Santa Barbara Independent Press and San Diego Playbill Award winner, Barry holds a BFA from Carnegie-Mellon University. www.barrypearl.com
Richard Pruitt (General Mills)
Richard Pruitt has appeared on Broadway in On The Waterfront. Off-Broadway, he appeared in Bat Boy, The Musical, A Girl Singer, and Wicked Philanthropy. Regionally he's appeared in 1776, Jesus Christ, Superstar, Great Expectations, A View From The Bridge, and many others. On film, Mr. Pruett was seen in New York News, Frankie and Johnny, Freejack, and Steel.
Alet Taylor (Yoni)
Alet Taylor most recently appeared in the "Leo" tour of The Producers, and is just wrapping up her stint in the Las Vegas production of that show. In New York, she has appeared in One Touch Of Venus, Sweet Adelaide, The Boys From Syracuse, and Li'l Abner, all at Encores!. She also appeared in Louisiana Purchase and Tip Toes at Carnegie Hall. In Los Angeles, she performed in Bruce Kimmel's musical revue, What If, and created the role of Yoni in the world premiere of The Brain From Planet X. Miss Taylor has also sung on thirteen albums produced by Bruce Kimmel, including Peter Pan, Sondheim At The Movies, Lost In Boston IV, and Unsung Musicals III.
Erin Webley (Various Roles/Ensemble)
Erin is so excited to be making her NYMF debut. She was recently seen as Little Sally in URINETOWN at the Geva Theatre and as Tommy Tune's tap dancing side-kick, Chee-Chee, in DOCTOR DOLITTLE. First National Tours include 42ND STREET and THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE and regional credits include BABES IN ARMS (Goodspeed) and CINDERELLA (Papermill). Erin originated the role of Gloria in the Off-Broadway production of SUMMER OF '42. She is a graduate of theUniversity of Michigan MT program and is a proud member of Actors' Equity Association.
Steven Wenslawski (Various Roles/Ensemble)
Steven Wenslawski...is thrilled to be making his NYMF debut in his third onstage venture into science fiction, the first being Space Trek: Lost on Gilligan's Planet in which he evoked the roles of Wesley Crusher and Will Robinson. National tours include Thoroughly Modern Millie, Fosse, and Tommy Tune's Dr. Dolittle, in which he played against both gender and species as Sophie the Seal. He participated in the pre-Broadway workshop of Never Gonna Dance and was most recently seen in the Kennedy Center's production of Carnival, directed by Robert Longbottom. Regionally he has plagued the stages of North Shore Music Theatre and Sacramento Music Circus. He is a proud member of Actors' Equity Association.
Michael Cassara (Casting Director)
recent credits include The Molly Maguires (Pre-Broadway workshop, dir. Sheryl Kaller, mus. dir. John McDaniel), Clear Blue Tuesday (feature film, dir. Elizabeth Lucas), The Gig (benefit concert and cast recording), Breaking In (internet series), If This Hat Could Talk (national tour, dir. George Faison), Stephen Schwartz's Captain Louie (national tour), and countless readings and workshops. Regional credits include Goodspeed Musicals, the Paper Mill Playhouse, the Kitchen Theatre Company and the Hinton Battle Theatre Laboratory. Michael Cassara Casting is the resident casting office of the 2007 New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF). Upcoming: 11 shows in this year's NYMF and the inaugural 2007-2008 season of the Stephen Sondheim Center for the Arts in Fairfield, Iowa! For more information, please visit www.michaelcassara.net.
Adam Cates (Choreographer)
ADAM CATES has danced alongside Tommy Tune as asst. choreographer for the national tour of Doctor Dolittle and Holland America's Paparazzi. In NYC, his choreography has been seen at the Cherry Lane Theatre (fringe), Galapagos Arts Space, and BB Kings. Internationally, his work was performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the Barbados Jazz Festival. This summer, Adam was the children's chorus choreographer for a tour of The Wizard of Oz (KC Starlight, ATL Theater of the Stars, Casa Manana). He choreographed The Magic of Eli Kerr, awarded Best Production of a Show in Reno/Tahoe that season. During NYMF's first season, he assisted on Jim & Bob Walton's The Eyes Are the First Thing To Go (Midlife!). Other associate/assistant choreographer credits: On the 20th Century (AMTSJ), Holland America's ms Oosterdam, Disney's Beauty & the Beast and, this fall, Peter Pan (Alabama Shakespeare). Adam continues to teach for various dance conservatories and conventions throughout North America. Thank you to my mentors: Patti, Peggy, and Tommy. www.adamcates.net
Martian Entertainment (General Manager)
Martian Entertainment LLC is owned and founded by Carl D. White, and supported by a highly skilled staff including Lauren Yates as Assoc. GM, David van Zyll de Jong and Scott DelaCruz. Producing/Management creds include: ALTAR BOYZ (NYC & B'way National Tour); NAKED BOYS SINGING!; MOTHER LOAD; [TITLE OF SHOW]; SAMMY & ME; DOG SEES GOD; THE MUSICAL OF MUSICALS (NYC & London); THE BLACK & WHITES BLUES; MATT & BEN; LOVE, JANIS; THE LAST SESSION; 21 DOG YEARS; CRISS ANGEL MINDFREAK; YORK THEATRE CO., many others. Next: Producing the new MySpace Musical TOP 8, by Jordan Beck & Jonathan May; A new Sci-Fi rock musical with composer Paul Murphy. www.MartianEntertainment.com
Sara Even (Sound Design)
Sara Even received her Bachelor's Degree in Sound Recording Technology from the University of Massachusetts Lowell and completed her internship at the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck, NY. She has since gone on to work in Westchester county and NYC as both an engineer and designer. She has worked on such shows as Beauty and the Beast, You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown, Oklahoma, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Julius Caesar, Saving Aimee and Geisha.
Larry Goldberg (Musical Director)
LAWRENCE GOLDBERG is a well-established music director, conductor and pianist for Broadway shows and touring and regional productions, as well as an accomplished composer and lyricist. Currently the Associate Conductor for The Drowsy Chaperone on Broadway, Larry has also conducted the Broadway productions of Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Phantom of the Opera, and Carousel, and he has Music Directed touring productions of The Producers, Les Miserables, Sunset Blvd., and Cats. Larry's regional theatre credits include shows at Prince Music Theatre (Philadelphia), Ahmanson Theatre (LA), Old Globe Theatre (San Diego), La Jolla Playhouse, American Musical Theatre of San Jose, and Pittsburgh Public Theater. Larry is also an accomplished composer/lyricist and arranger. He has written words and music for many cabaret songs, as well as the children's musical Big Bad Wolf and the Endandered Forest, and he was principal songwriter for the KDKA-TV (Pittsburgh) children's show Let's Read a Story in addition to appearing regularly on camera. His one-act chamber opera A Test of Faith was awarded 1st prize in the 1988 International Jewish Music Competition. His arrangements have been performed by the Boston Pops, Cincinnati Pops, and Pittsburgh Symphony orchestras. Larry is proud to add Author to his resume this year, with the publication of his new book, Broadway Musical Anagrami. Look for it in Theatre District gift shops.
Bruce Kimmel (Co-Author, Composer/Lyricist, Director)
Bruce Kimmel wrote, directed and starred in the cult movie hit, The First Nudie Musical (currently available in a Special Edition DVD). With David Wechter, he co-created the story for the hit film, The Faculty, directed by Robert Rodriguez and was a writer/producer on Penn and Teller's Bullshit! for Showtime. As an actor, Mr. Kimmel guest-starred on most of the long-running television shows of the 1970s. Since 1993, Mr. Kimmel has been one of the leading producers of theatre music on CD, having produced over 150 albums. He was nominated for a Grammy for producing the revival cast album of Hello, Dolly!, and he also created the critically-acclaimed Lost In Boston and Unsung Musicals series. Mr. Kimmel has produced solo albums for many of today's best-known musical theatre performers, including Alice Ripley and Emily Skinner, Christiane Noll, Liz Callaway, Brent Barrett, Jason Graae, Randy Graff, Rebecca Luker, Judy Kaye, Judy Kuhn, Petula Clark, Helen Reddy and many others, and he has also produced many off-Broadway and Broadway cast albums. Mr. Kimmel is the author six novels, his acclaimed coming-of-age trilogy comprised of Benjamin Kritzer, Kritzerland and Kritzer Time, and his two mysteries, Writer's Block, which is set in the world of musical theatre in 1969, and Rewind, which is set in the world of the recording industry. His latest, How To Write A Dirty Book and Other Stories, was published in October 2006, and his new mystery, Murder At Hollywood High will be published in October 2007. Mr. Kimmel directed (and wrote most of) a critically acclaimed musical revue, What If? and directed the world premiere of The Brain From Planet X in December of 2006. He has recently directed one-person shows for Linda Purl, Kevin Spirtas, and Joan Ryan.
Rachel Maier (Production Stage Manager)
Off Broadway: The Awesome 80's Prom, My First Time. Favorite NYC credits: Don't Quit Your Night Job, White Noise (NYMF 06), The Fabulous Life of a Size Zero (DR2), Mr. Broadway benefit, Rags Benefit concert (Nokia Theater), Triple Threats (The Independent Theater), Aven'U Boys (Producers Club), Mettle (Studio Dante), All is Full of Love benefit concert, The Secret Garden benefit concert, Stuck in the Zipper concert, Based on a Totally True Story (MTC), Suddenly Last Summer (RTC), Monica ! The Musical (NYMF 05), Broadway Meets Country, and Captain Louie (Little Shubert). Workshops/Readings: In the Heights (37 Arts), Big Tent, Tom Jones (dir. Gordon Greenberg), White Noise. TV/Film: "Didn't this used to be fun" and "Breaking In." BA in Drama from the University of California, Irvine. Founding member of Coyote REP. Thanks to my family.
Larry Moore (Orchestrator)
Larry Moore was praised by the New York Daily News as "one of the most ingenious practitioners of his profession." His work has encompassed the theatre, choral, opera and recording industries. His restoration of Cole Porter's lost musical Jubilee has been performed by The New Amsterdam Theatre Company in New York, the 42nd Street Moon Company in San Francisco, Indiana Univerity Opera Theatre, and by the BBC Radio 3 as a 1999 holiday broadcast. His work has been heard at the Goodspeed Opera, The New York State Theatre Institute, the Houston Grand Opera, and City Center Encores! His recordings include the complete Showboar for EMI-Angel, the Lost In Boston and Unsung Musicals series produced by Bruce Kimmel, Fine and Dandy and Jule Styne In Hollywood for PS Classics, and solo recordings for Liz Callaway, Jason Graae, John Barrowman, Caroline O'Connor, Sean McDermott, and others.
David Wechter (Co-Author)
David Wechter co-wrote and co-directed the Disney cult film, Midnight Madness, and wrote and directed the film, The Malibu Bikini Shop. With Bruce Kimmel, he wrote the original screenplay for the hit film, The Faculty, directed by Robert Rodriguez. Mr. Wechter currently exectutive produces Cowboy U for CMT. He also executive produced Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making The Team, Scariest Places On Earth, and was the supervising producer and writer of Penn & Teller: Bullshit! for Showtime, which won a Writers Guild Of America Award for Best Comedy.
Heather Wolensky (Set Design)
Heather's recent design credits include Orpheus and Eurydice (Chashama), Nami (Theatre row), Pincus, the Fish People, and The Great Flood (Dance New Amsterdam), Guys & Dolls (St. Bart Players), Breakfast for Dinner (NYC Fringe Festival), Fools in Love (BAM), and The Garden Party (Havel Festival). Assistant Design; Broadway: Well, Regional: Tale of Two Cities, Where's Charley? The Boy Friend and King Stag. Art Direction includes; Nickelodeon ME:TV, Denis Leary's Comics Come Home, BET Take5, 2007 FiFi Awards, and Hump day for ABC.com. Heather is a grad of SUNY Purchase and a member of USA-829.