The 2012 New York Musical Theatre Festival presents Central Avenue Breakdown, an American musical with music and lyrics by Kevin Ray, book by Kevin Ray and Andrea Lepcio, additional story by Suellen Vance, and directed by Christopher Windom. Central Avenue Breakdown runs July 19th at 8:00pm, July 10th at 5:00pm and 9:00pm, July 21st at 1:00pm, July 22nd at 5:00 pm and 9:00pm at The Pershing Square Signature Center (480 W. 42nd Street).
Prior to Central Avenue Breakdown performing at NYMF, the show will be performed at the Daegu International Musical Festival (DIMF) in South Korea as part of NYMF’s exchange program with DIMF.
The show was featured in the 2011 New York Musical Theatre Festival and has had a year of development. The book of the musical has been rewritten based on Kevin Ray’s original work. NYMF is producing Central Avenue Breakdown this year and further demonstrates their dedication to the longevity and success of their musicals.
Central Avenue Breakdown is the first show to return to NYMF two years in a row for an encore production. The 2011 production of the musical received 5 of the top NYMF excellence Awards: Music, Orchestration, Choreography, Individual Performance, and the Daegu International Musical Festival Production Award, as well as two Honorable Mentions for Direction and Outstanding Ensemble.
Central Avenue Breakdown is a musical about family, jazz, tragedy and triumph. It tells the story of Bill and Jim Marcel, brothers and sax players, battling to carve out unique voices amidst the rising musical movements of swing and bop. Driven by their father's failed musical aspirations and their own ambitions, brother betrays brother and each pays a price. Set in electrifying 1940s Los Angeles, the show's action unfolds against the backdrop of World War II, a newly booming Hollywood, and the early stirrings of the civil rights movement. Central Avenue Breakdown plunges the audience into the sexy Central Avenue jazz scene where artists must choose between fame and authenticity, greed and faith, pride and transformation.
“Central Avenue Breakdown was a breakout hit at last year’s NYMF, and it has been exciting and fascinating to continue to work on the show and to bring it back for this year’s festival,” said NYMF Executive Director and Producer Isaac Robert Hurwitz. “It’s important in the development of any musical to give it time to ‘breathe’ and the changes that have been made have really focused the story.”
The cast includes: Albert Christmas (Bway: Ragtime, FX’s “Lights Out,” “Blue Bloods”), Juson Williams (Two time Audelco Award Winner, The Wiz, Stormy Weather), Stacey Sargeant (Legally Blonde, Passing Strange), Joshua Boone (Cutman: A Boxing Musical, A Raisin In The Sun), Rod Lawrence (Passing Strange, Book of Grace), Jeremiah Zinger (The Full Monty, Grease), Britton Smith (Hairspray, Ragtime), Kimberly Dora Exum (Chicago, For Colored Girls…)Rebecca LaChance (Broadway Rising Stars Concert), Anne Marie Vick (A Chorus Line, White Christmas, Anything Goes), Sheldon Henry (South Pacific, The Who’s Tommy), and Sheila Jones (Festival of the Lion King, Ragtime).
Central Avenue Breakdown is directed by Drama League Fellow Christopher Windom (Ragtime at Theaterworks, Clue: The Musical, Big River) with musical direction by JoNathan Smith (Swing!, Thoroughly Modern Millie). Costume design is by Janell Berte (Family Dinner, Plagued – A Love Story), sound design is by Josh Leibert (Our Sinatra) and lighting design is by Grant W. S. Yeager (Now.Here.This, Chimichangas and Zoloft)
Tickets for Central Avenue Breakdown are $25, and the show plays at the The Pershing Square Signature Center (480 W. 42nd Street) from July 19 – July 22, 2012. Tickets can be purchased by calling (212) 352-3101 or by visiting www.nymf.org. For more information: www.nymf.org.