It’s a long way to go from the suburbs of Melbourne to the bright lights of Broadway, but the two Australian creators of The Mapmaker’s Opera hope to do just that after securing a spot as an Official Selection of the 2014 New York Musical Theatre Festival’s Next Link Project.
Composer and Musical Director, Kevin Purcell 54, and Bookwriter/Lyricist, Victor Kazan 66, both based in Melbourne, are the creative partnership behind this new stage musical, which is a moving love story set against the backdrop of the Mexican revolution.
Based on a novel by Béa Gonzalez, The Mapmaker’s Opera, was selected from over 400 submissions world wide to become one of just 10 ‘Next Link Project’ shows awarded production spots, giving Purcell and Kazan access to professional Broadway actors, directors and choreographers at a specially negotiated rate for between 5 – 8 performances in an off-Broadway theatre.
“It is immensely gratifying to have been chosen from such a vast number of entries, and we’re very excited at the prospect of staging the premiere production of our show at NYMF. The Festival gives us a phenomenal opportunity to work with Broadway actors and to perform to a New York audience.” said Mr Kazan.
To take part the team needs to raise $150,000 to cover expenses related to the Festival held throughout July. They have launched a Kickstarter campaign and donations can also be received directly through their website www.mapmakersopera.com.
“We need to raise the funds quickly so that we can finance the Festival production, and also pay for our air travel and accommodation in New York. This amount is a fraction of the usual cost of mounting a new show in the Big Apple. And we would be exceedingly grateful to anyone who could assist us financially to achieve our goal.” said Dr Purcell.
The annual festival, held in mid-town Manhattan, is the largest musical theatre event in the world. Now in its eleventh year, it attracts upwards of 40,000 people.
Recognised in 2013 for being the first Australian musical theatre writing team ever to be awarded a CAP21 Music Theatre Writer's Residency in New York City, as well as being awarded a place that same year in the inaugural Johnny Mercer Writer’s Colony at Goodspeed Musicals (The Home of American Musical Theatre), Purcell and Kazan are on track to build on this present opportunity and subsequently turn their new show into a full-scale, epic production.
THE MAPMAKER’S OPERA
The New York Musical Theatre Festival and Julie McBeth