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Sam Willmott’s Larson Legacy Concert to be Held at Adelphi University This Sunday Oct. 4

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Garden City, NY (October 1, 2015) — Adelphi University Performing Arts Center (AUPAC) is proud to present the first Larson Legacy Concert showcasing the work of composer-lyricist Sam Willmott, a recipient of The American Theatre Wing’s 2015 Jonathan Larson® Grants, on Sunday, October 4th at 3:00 PM.


If you count yourself a fan of rollicking Viking chants, fantasy creatures, intercollegiate competitive Punjabi folk dancing and/or standardized testing, you’re in luck because Sam Willmott has got the show for you! Join Willmott (2015 Jonathan Larson Grant, 2015 Kleban Prize, 2012 Fred Ebb Award) for a magical afternoon of song and storytelling, presenting selections from projects old, new, and brand-spankin’-new-never-heard-before.


Directed by Hunter Bird with music direction by Matt Aument, Willmott’s concert will feature the talents of Broadway performers Whitney Bashor (The Bridges of Madison County), Angel Desai (Company), Tom Nelis (The Visit), and Michele Ragusa (Urinetown), as well as Kimberly Chatterjee, Lipica Shah, and an ensemble of students from Pace University’s acclaimed Musical Theatre Program (Ethan Carlson, Latoya Edwards, Byron Freeman, James Hunsaker, Kelsey Lake, Tatiana Lofton, Alexis Molnar, Christopher Nolan, Salena Qureshi, and Daniel Yearwood). Rachel Sussman produces. For more information on Sam Willmott and his work, visit www.samwillmott.com.


The Larson Legacy Concert Series at AUPAC celebrates the next generation of artists at the college home of the creator of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical RENT Jonathan Larson (’82). Each year, the American Theatre Wing presents emerging creators of musical theatre with The Jonathan Larson® Grants. Beginning with this concert, select recipients of these grants will be showcased at AUPAC in this ongoing concert series to help nurture and support the next generation of creative artists to carry on Jonathan Larson’s legacy. Max Vernon, another recipient of this year’s grants, will have the next concert in this series on March 6, 2016. The Jonathan Larson® Grants honor emerging composers, lyricists and writers by recognizing and showcasing their work and commemorate Larson’s achievements and his dream of integrating contemporary urban vitality into musical theatre. Past recipients of these grants have gone on to create the Broadway musicals A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Grey Gardens, Next To Normal, Elf, Hands on a Hardbody, A Christmas Story, Doctor Zhivago and many more.


Tickets to Sam Willmott’s Larson Legacy Concert are $25 ($20 seniors/$10 students). To purchase, visit aupac.adelphi.edu or contact the Lucia and Steven N. Fischer Box Office at 516-877-4000 (open Tuesday through Friday from 1 PM to 6 PM). The Adelphi University Performing Arts Center is located at 1 South Avenue, Garden City, NY 11530. The Adelphi campus is a 15 minute walk from the Nassau Boulevard station on the LIRR. Taxi service is available from the Mineola station on the LIRR. Travel time from NYC is approximately 1 hour.


Sam Willmott is a New York City-based musical theater composer, lyricist and bookwriter whose projects include Standardized Testing – The Musical!!!!; Yo, Vikings! (with lyricist Marcus Stevens); the mini-musical Scarlet Takes a Tumble; the upcoming Bhangin’ It (with playwrights Rehana Lew Mirza and Mike Lew); and Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol (additional lyrics for the stage adaptation of the Jule Styne / Bob Merrill score).


Sam is the recipient of the 2015 Kleban Prize for Most Promising Musical Theatre Lyricist, a 2015 Jonathan Larson Grant, the 2013 ASCAP Foundation Harold Adamson Award for Lyrics, the 2012 Fred Ebb Award, the 2012 John Wallowitch Award, and the 2009 Kennedy Center ACTF Musical Theater Award.  He has been a Composer-in-Residence at The Orchard Project, Running Deer Musical Musical Theatre Lab and Rhinebeck Writers Retreat (all summer 2015), Goodspeed Musicals (both 2013 and 2014), and the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center National Music Theater Conference (2013).  Sam was also the first musical theatre writer to be recognized with the Exploring the Metropolis / ConEdison Musicians’ Residency (2013).


Sam’s work as a music director, arranger, orchestrator and pianist has taken him from Radio City Music Hall to Abu Dhabi, UAE, with collaborators as diverse as avant-garde theater legend Elizabeth Swados, Nunsense‘s Dan Goggin, and singer/songwriter Shaina Taub.  In May 2012, he made his Broadway debut with Sister Act.  Sam has spearheaded workshops, master classes and courses at such storied programs and institutions as The Broadway Teachers Workshop, Interlochen Arts Camp, Emerson College and Harlem School of the Arts,.and currently works with Lincoln Center’s Songwriting in the Schools program and Pace University’s Musical Theater BFA program.  Sam is a very proud contributing writer to the Korean children’s language program, English Egg.


Sam’s additional accolades include a 2014/2015 NEO residency at the York Theatre (NYC); a 2013/2014 Dramatists Guild Fellowship; the 2013 ASCAP Musical Theater Workshop, led by panelists Stephen Schwartz (Wicked), Peter Schneider (Disney Animation) and Bob Alwine (Associate Producer at Goodspeed Musicals);  a Tisch School of the Arts Trustee Scholarship; Interlochen Center for the Arts’ prestigious Maddy Summer Artist Award; and two National Capital Area Cappie Awards. He is an alumnus of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, New York University and the Johnny Mercer Songwriters Project, and a member of the Dramatists Guild and the BMI Lehman Engel Advanced Musical Theatre Workshop.


Adelphi University is a world-class, modern university with excellent and highly relevant programs where students prepare for lives of active citizenship and professional careers. Through its schools and programs—College of Arts and Sciences, Derner Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies, Honors College, Robert B. Willumstad School of Business, Ruth S. Ammon School of Education, University College, College of Nursing and Public Health and the School of Social Work—the coeducational university offers undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as professional and educational programs for adults. As a nationally-ranked, doctoral research university, Adelphi University currently enrolls nearly 8,000 students from 43 states and 45 foreign countries. With its main campus in Garden City and its centers in Manhattan, Suffolk County, and Poughkeepsie, the University, chartered in 1896, maintains a commitment to liberal studies, in tandem with rigorous professional preparation and active citizenship.


The American Theatre Wing (William Ivey Long, Chairman, Board of Trustees; Heather Hitchens, President) is dedicated to advancing artistic excellence and nurturing theatre’s next generation: on the stage, behind the scenes, and in the audience. For nearly a century, the Wing has pursued this mission with programs that span the nation to invest in the growth and evolution of American Theatre. Traditionally, the Wing has encouraged members of the theatre community to share their off-stage time and talent directly with the theatre audience at large–whether it was singing for the troops in the Stage Door Canteen of the 1940’s, or sharing their stories on a podcast today.  As the founders of The Tony Awards®, the American Theatre Wing has developed the foremost national platform for the recognition of theatrical achievement on Broadway. Yet the Wing’s reach extends beyond Broadway and beyond New York. The Wing develops the next generation of theatre professionals through the SpringboardNYC and Theatre Intern Network programs, incubates innovative theatre across the country through the National Theatre Company Grants, fosters the song of American theatre through the Jonathan Larson Grants, honors the best in New York theatrical design with the Henry Hewes Design Award, and illuminates the creative process through the “Working in the Theatre” program and media archive. Beginning last season, the American Theatre Wing has entered into a long-term partnership with The Village Voice to co-present The OBIE Awards, Off Broadway’s Highest Honor. The 61st Annual OBIE Awards will be held in March 2016. Visitors to americantheatrewing.org can get inspired and gain insight into the artistic process through the Wing’s extensive media collection, and learn more about its programming for students, aspiring and working professionals, and audiences.


Follow the Wing on Facebook.com/TheAmericanTheatreWing and Twitter.com/TheWing.



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