Manhattan Movement & Arts Center (MMAC) presented the world premiere of Freckleface Strawberry the Musical. The show is an adaptation of the best-selling children's book written by award winning actress Julianne Moore. MMAC Productions, located on the Upper West Side, debuted the musical on July 1st for a two-day workshop run. The first of many MMAC productions, Freckleface is about childhood, acceptance and friendship. The producers will announce a commercial run in the upcoming weeks.
"This show is truly breathtaking," says Rose Caiola, owner and director of MMAC. "It reaches out to everyone - children and adults alike. Everyone has faced some type of prejudice in their childhood whether it had to do with race, religion or the clothes they choose to wear. The music and choreography bring Freckleface to life."
The Freckleface starlet who steals the show is played by Rachel Resheff, who appears as Young Fiona in the Broadway Musical Shrek. The cast features: Kennedy Barber-Fraser, Dahlia Chacon, Nicolette Cure, Ava Doorley, Rachel Francis, Maya Jade Frank, Chelsea Michayla Galembo, Gabe Green, Serena Hanna, Allegra Herman, Grace Isaacman, Molly Jobe, Emma Kantor, Leah Lane, Aidan McAndrews, Danielle Resheff, Evan James Rocco, Rebecca Rosenzweig, Harriet Smith, Dorothy Silver, Juliette Silver and Elon Van Buckley. In collaboration with Julianne Moore, Rose Caiola wrote the musical's book with Gary Kupper, who penned the music and lyrics. Buddy Crutchfield is the talented Director who marshaled the exceptional young cast and Gail Pennington is the choreographer behind the amazing theatrical moves.
Freckleface Strawberry, aka Julianne Moore at a young age, is a touching story about accepting yourself the way you are. Strawberry is teased about her freckles constantly, so she tries different ways to hide them before ultimately hiding herself. Her musical journey to self-acceptance is complete when she discovers that her classmates missed her while she lived undercover. They teach her that everyone is different and the most important thing is to have friends.
Manhattan Movement & Arts Center, located on the Upper West Side just south of Lincoln Center, comprises 18,000 square feet of obstruction-free dance studios and a state-of-the-art, 160-seat theater. MMAC is the home of the Manhattan Youth Ballet pre-professional academy and performance company, which was founded in 1994 as Studio Maestro by Rose Caiola. MMAC also offers a full schedule of adult open dance and fitness classes for all levels and a comprehensive children's program, and has become a popular rental venue for auditions, rehearsals and special events.
Broadway Triple Threat is one of several summer programs introduced by MMAC to encourage creativity and artistry in young people. Additional information: www.manhattanmovement.com and www.manhattanyouthballet.org.
Serena Hanna, Rachel Resheff and Emma Kantor
Evan Thomas Rocco, Chelsea Michayala Gelembo, Leah Lane and Ava Doorley
Buddy Crutcfield (Director) and Gail Pennington (Choreographer)
Rose Caiola (Book Writer/Producer), Steve Webber (Musical Director) and Buddy Crutchfield
Rachel Resheff and Elon Van Buckley
Rose Caiola and Leah Lane