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Here’s the official press release for our big opening tomorrow! We’re wicked psyched for opening night!
I’LL BE DAMNED
A NEW MUSICAL
STARRING MARY TESTA AND KENITA MILLER
BEGINS PERFORMANCES JULY 1 AT THE VINEYARD
Performances begin July 1st for I’LL BE DAMNED, a new musical by Rob Broadhurst and Brent Black, for a limited engagement through July 18th at the Dimson Theatre at The Vineyard, 108 East 15th Street (between Union Square East & Irving Place). I’LL BE DAMNED is directed by April Nickell, with choreography by Luis Salgado and musical direction by Jason Sherbundy.
Mary Testa and Kenita Miller head the cast of I’LL BE DAMNED. Also featured in the company are Kurt Robbins, Jacob Hoffman, Gregory Treco, Emily Borromeo, Nick Gelona, Alison Luff, Anthony Martinez, Tiffany Topol, Daryl Ray Carliles, Stephanie Martinez, and Valerie Salgado.
I’LL BE DAMNED is the story of a friendless, comic-book-loving homeschooler named Louis who receives a seemingly irresistible offer from Satan. Louis’ mother is a little late in coming to terms with her son growing up, God seems lost in his vision of a perfect world, and Louis is discovering himself as he attempts to find just one true friend. This fresh new musical comedy asks the universal question: Is there a way to make people like you without having to sell your soul to the devil?
Mary Testa has appeared on Broadway in 42nd Street (Tony nomination), …Forum, Xanadu, The Rink, Guys and Dolls, On the Town (Tony nomination),Barnum, Marie Christine, Marilyn, and Chicago. Kenita Miller appeared in the original Broadway companies of The Color Purple and Xanadu, and Off-Broadway in Langston in Harlem (2010 Drama Desk nomination) and Dessa Rose.
The book for I’LL BE DAMNED is by Rob Broadhurst and Brent Black, with music by Mr. Broadhurst and lyrics by Mr. Black. They are recent graduates of NYU, where they created the musical at the Tisch Graduate Musical Theater Writing Program.
Director April Nickell helmed Jaradoa Theater’s acclaimed productions of Serenade by Rachel Sheinkin and Nils Olaf Dolven, The Small of Her Back and Anika Larsen’s Shafrika, The White Girl. Choreographer Luis Salgado is in the cast of Broadway’s In the Heights, where he also serves as assistant to the choreographer. Luis also assisted the choreographers on the films Enchanted and Step Up 2 the Streets, and he choreographed the Off-Broadway productions of Shafrika, The White Girl and Serenade (HOLA Award).
Scenic design for I’LL BE DAMNED is by Sean Tribble, with costume design by Andrea Varga, lighting design by Herrick Goldman, and sound design by Kyle Irwin.
JARADOA (Just A Roomful of Artists Doing Outreach And) THEATER is proudly kicking off its fourth season with I’LL BE DAMNED. Jaradoa is a member-based group of theater artists – actors, directors, writers, and designers – who have come together to promote mercy, beauty and truth through performance and service. Play On!, Jaradoa’s innovative acting and playwriting program that uses theater to improve literacy skills, has been run in public schools, community centers, an alternative-to-incarceration program for teenage felons, and a shelter for runaway and homeless teens.
The playing schedule for the limited engagement of I’LL BE DAMNED will be Tuesday at 7pm, Wednesday through Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 2 & 8pm, and Sunday at 3pm. Tickets are $18 and are available through www.SmartTix.com or by calling (212) 868-4444. For more information, visit www.JaradoaTheater.org.
By April Nickell
I listen to a lot of podcasts and every now and then tears spring to my eyes on the subway. I am always surprised by this and try to figure out what has moved me. It is often because of human connection. I just listened to a Bill Moyers about activism where he interviews Howard Zinn. He tells about Janora Dalinger, a 23 yr. old woman who, while at a sit-in strike against unfair working conditions of the 1930’s, got on a loud speaker and rallied the crowed against the violent police. The men tried to stop her from getting involved but she pushed them away. Her speech made women walk into the chaos of the protest in order to help the powers that be see the violence of their acts. Men don’t like to hurt women. What is it that allows an individual to walk into violence in order to bring about change? It is connectedness. You may get hurt or die but you are part of something bigger than you. There is power when we realize we belong to each other.
This woman’s voice caused action and then the retelling of the story affected me. Encouraging people to tell their stories and listen to others stories is what Jaradoa is all about. I keep thinking about what Jaradoa has done on the very limited budgets we have and thinking that none of it is possible if we didn’t feel like we belonged together. (if any of you Lost fans are feeling like Rose in the final season thinking – “if you say ‘live together, die alone’ one more time, I’m going to hurt you!” rest assured – I leave that line to the high drama of Lost!)
Here we are heading into load in this week with very limited staff and funding but what happens is volunteers, members and friends show up to help make it happen. Some of my favorite memories are looking around the theater in the middle of load in and seeing, writers, actors, directors, designers, friends, my neighbors and even my parents working on something. I think this even playing field of everyone diving in and doing what they can for the production is what makes our play time like the Kicknick or ‘family’ potluck so much fun. I am not saying painting a set is the same as this woman’s rallying speech, but I am saying what makes either of them work is the same thing – knowing we belong to each other.
There is no outside, no other, only all. Jaradoa is a family now and hope everyone we encounter can become part of that family and remember this whole city, country and planet are part of that family. We belong to each other. We are on the same team. So we love. That is the team we are on. The loving body of the universe!
(Click here for a link to the Bill Moyers Thee Journal that made me cry! He interviews Howard Zinn around 28:00 minutes)
Allow me to introduce myself, my name is Daryl Ray Carliles, most people call me Daryl, but if you’re one of my students, you call me Mr. Daryl. I am an actor who has been living in New York for the past three years and I was happy to have the opportunity to become a member of Jaradoa Theater last year.
Now every story has a beginning and I want to enlighten you a little bit about mine. Upon my first year of college, I was given two opportunities at the same time. Based on my performance at local theaters in North Carolina, I was given the chance to teach music and drama at a charter school, which allowed me to not only to teach, but also be in charge of directing and producing two plays for the students to perform each year. I found this to be one of the most rewarding experiences up to that point in my life. I was also offered an acting scholarship to a two-year college for a Musical Theater degree. Now this created a moment of truly difficult decision because I felt as though my path as an actor would never fully fulfill me on the same level as being a teacher, yet it was still very much a passion that I had to pursue. I chose to become an actor.
So upon that decision, I moved away and began my acting career, which eventually led me to New York City where I became a professional actor, all the while holding on to the thoughts that hopefully one day I would be able to teach again and also inspire the same passion for performing that I felt.
Since becoming a member if Jaradoa Theater, I have also been involved in our Play On! Literacy Program which involves us as teaching artists going into schools lacking funding for the arts. The Play On! Literacy Program, consists of two teachers over a six week period helping the students to write their own plays by developing characters, finding conflict and working towards a resolution. The end result of the program is the opportunity to perform their own plays in front of their peers, teachers, and family.
On a personal level, since being a part of this program I have continued to grow as an artist simultaneously with these students, which has been incredibly fulfilling.
July starts our Off-Broadway production of I’ll Be Damned which allows me the opportunity to perform and fulfill the dream that I was driven to choose. In July we will also be having our Summer Jam Event, where one of my recent students will be able to perform a play he wrote in front of hundreds of people, which means a lot to me.
This means a lot to me because during the first week of class we allowed the students to share personal stories in helping to develop their characters. I was really touched by his personal story. He was encouraged by our Artistic Director April Nickell to use his feelings to help develop his play. So through out the process he was very brave in sharing with the class, and upon informing him of the decision to put his play in our show, his excitement and pride created the full realization that I had once again been a part of something bigger than me: inspiring a young artist to truly believe in himself.
I also find it a little serendipitous that two worlds I thought would have to remain separate have come together at the same time in my life, and have and proven once and for all that you really can have the best of both worlds.
We already announced that Jaradoa’s fourth production, starring Mary Testa, Kenita Miller and Kurt Robbins, will play a limited Off-Broadway engagement this July. Newly added to the cast of the tuner about a lonely high school student who makes a pact with the devil are Emily Borromeo, Nick Gelona, Jacob Hoffman, Anthony Martinez, Dana Steingold, Gregory Treco, and Jaradoa Members Daryl Ray Carliles and Stephanie Martinez.
Rob Broadhurst and Brent Black co-authored the musical that will be directed by Jaradoa Managing Artistic Director April Nickell. I’ll Be Damned will run July 1-18 at the Vineyard Theatre. Jaradoa Theater produces.
I’ll Be Damned is the story of a friendless, comic-book-loving homeschooler named Louis who receives a seemingly irresistible offer from Satan. Louis’ mother is a little late in coming to terms with her son growing up, God seems lost in his vision of a perfect world, and Louis is discovering himself as he attempts to find just one true friend. This fresh new musical comedy begs the universal question: ‘Is there a way to make people like you without having to sell your soul to the devil?’
I’ll Be Damned will have choreography by In the Heights cast member Luis Salgado and musical direction by Jason Sherbundy. The design team will include Sean Tribble (scenic design), Andrea Varga (costume design), Herrick Goldman (lighting design) and Mike Farfalla (sound design).
For tickets, phone (212) 868-4444 or visit Smarttix.com.