The much anticipated new musical Roller Derby, being presented as part of this year's New York
Musical Theatre Festival, is rolling uptown to a new venue. The legendary
director/choreographer Donald McKayle is bringing his latest work to the Ailey
Citigroup Theatre, built to honor his lifelong friend and collaborator, Alvin
Ailey, allowing five-time Tony Award nominated McKayle a larger canvas to
showcase his sports-inspired choreography.
199 seats are now available at only $20 each for every performance
through the NYMF website, www.nymf.org, or
by phone at 212-352-3101. A limited number of tickets will be available at the
Ailey Citigroup Theater box office 15 minutes before curtain time.
Performances will take place Thursday September 20 at 8PM; Friday September 21 at 8PM;
Saturday September 22 at 2PM & 8PM; Wednesday September 26 at 8PM; and
Thursday September 27 at 8PM.
With a book by Barry Arnold, lyrics by Arnold and John
Braden, the new musical Roller Derby
not only marks the return to the New York theater scene of master choreographer
and Outer Critics Circle Award winning director Donald McKayle, but also
six-time Tony nominee and Drama Desk Award winner Harold Wheeler, has updated
the music for Roller Derby with new
compositions, as well as well as creating the orchestrations.
True to the sport's original unique mix of athletes, Roller Derby stars a multi-cultural
ensemble cast including Renee Bang Allen, Ashlie Atkinson, Lea Delaria, Sylvia
Roldan Dohi, Ruben Flores, Eric Michael Gillett, Yvette Gonzalez-Nacer, Antwayn
Hopper, Sean Jenness, Eric William Morris, Michelle M. Robinson and David Shih.
"The Roller Derby
race begins when, on the road in 1972, a brash young rookie from New York City's mean
streets takes on the sport's beloved, but aging, star in a battle royal for the
right to be crowned the reigning Roller Derby Queen. Promoted by the game's wheeler dealer manager,
the pair tears up the track, rockin' and rollin' with the ten decidedly
colorful gals and guys on their team, famed to television fans across America
as the World Champion Bombers. Along the
way, the rivals meet their match, discovering more than they ever dared to
dream about life, love and how the game is played – all set to a lively
pop/rock score," state press notes.
The production team for Roller
Derby includes set design by Rod Foster, costume design by Susan Tsu,
lighting design by Chenault Spence, sound design by Tom Morse, and video design
by Kara Miller.
Now in its 4th year, The New York Musical Theatre Festival
is the largest musical theatre event in America. NYMF premiered 99 new musicals during its
first three seasons, with more than a dozen of these shows transferring to
successful off-Broadway and regional productions. NYMF is widely regarded as the premier source
for new material and talent discovery.