Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department and Music Department alumni talent will be on display in Underscore Theatre Company‘s third annual Chicago Musical Theatre Festival. Created to showcase and support Chicago’s burgeoning field of musical theatre creators, this year’s festival will be held August 9-28 at Victory Gardens Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln, Chicago. Fourteen new musical productions will be featured in the festival, with each production receiving four performances.
Among the Columbia College Chicago alumni involved in the festival are:
Actors Jerome Riley (BFA ’16), a graduate of the Theatre Department’s BFA Program in Musical Theatre Performance, and Conor McGarry (BA ’16), a graduate of the Theatre Department’s BA Program in Acting, who will both appear in Planted, presented by Rogue Elephant Productions. It’s a contemporary song cycle exploring relationships of contemporary queer men navigating the minefields of dating, marriage, separation, and independence.
Actor Nathan Carroll (BA ’09), a graduate of the Theatre Department’s BA Program in Musical Theatre, who will be featured in Flight, presented by Kokandy Productions. The musical is based on the Greek myth of Daedalus and Icarus.
Director Jon Martinez, an alumnus of the Theatre Department’s Musical Theatre BA program, who is directing Jenna Roxy and the Church of Modern Love, presented by Bailiwick Chicago in conjunction with With a Machete Productions. The show concerns a young woman who becomes the leader of a commune of people focused on music, love, and drinking the world’s most popular cough syrup. (In November, Martinez will direct and choreograph Underscore Theatre Company’s Chicago premiere of Tonya and Nancy: The Rock Opera.)
Composer Brad Kemp (BMus ’12), who graduated Summa Cum Laude from the Columbia College Chicago Music Department’s Bachelor of Music Composition program and also took courses in the Theatre Department’s musical theatre program. His musical Tribulation: The Musical will be presented by Higgin’s Beach Productions. Previously performed at Chicago’s iO Theater, Tribulation is described as a “hilarious take on the Bible’s Book of Revelation.”