Six New Musicals by High School and College Students Debut at ShowSearch




IRVINE, CA (August 19, 2015) - After a nationwide search for new short musicals created by young writers, the six final shows have been selected for SHOWSEARCH, produced by The Festival of New American Musicals in residence at University of California, Irvine.

After receiving submissions from across the U.S., six musicals have been chosen as finalists for SHOWSEARCH, the national competition for 10-minute original musicals. These young writers, all high school and college students, hail from all corners of the country. Their musicals will be presented in a one time only reading by a professional ensemble of actors on Saturday, August 29th at 3 pm in the Claire Trevor Theatre, University of California, Irvine.

Each team of finalists have been paired with a professional mentor to help develop their musical. 2015 mentors include Adam Gwon (Ordinary Days), Kait Kerrigan (Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown), Ryan Scott Oliver (35 MM), David Zippel (City of Angels, Mulan), Michael Weiner (First Date) and Alan Zachary (First Date).

The finalists will all be flown to Southern California for a weekend of attending theater, taking master classes with industry professionals, and seeing the debuts of their original musicals.

To encourage the continual pursuit of their education and budding writing careers, creators of these six finalist shows will receive a $1,000 grant courtesy of Wells Fargo Capital Finance. The two winning shows will receive an additional $1,000.

The high school musical winner is Middle School Election (Sammy Grob, 17 & Asher Muldoon, 16). The college musicals competing for Best Musical include Blind Fight (Pace University’s Ethan Carlson, 20 & Saidu Sinlah, 20), Emily Again (UCLA’s Mina Bloom, 20 & Leland Frankel, 21), Here, in the Park (University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Nicholas Connors, 22), What’s a Guy to Do (Point Park University’s Brandon Lambert, 23), and You’re Invited (UCLA’s Chris Meissner, 22 & Katheryne Penny, 22).

Judges for the event include John Glore (Associate Artistic Director of South Coast Repertory), Producer Christopher Sepulveda (An American in Paris, 2015 Broadway’s Spring Awakening), and Dr. Daniel Gary Busby (Chair of the Department of Drama in the Claire Trevor School of the Arts at UC Irvine).

The acting ensemble includes Brittney Bertier, Taylor Boldt, Katie Deshan, Gabi Hankins, Cooper Howell, Ian Littleworth, Garrett Marshall, Micaela Martinez, Daniel May, Josey Montana McCoy, Tiana Okoye, and Katherine Washington.

Join us Saturday, August 29th 3 pm at UC Irvine’s Claire Trevor Theatre for a staged reading of the six final musicals. Tickets are free of charge. The performance is open to the public.
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The presentation will feature Direction by Richard Israel, Casting by Festival board member Michael Donovan, Stage Management by Danielle DeMasters, Musical Direction by Jennifer Lin, Assistant Production by Megan Fitzgerald, and will be Produced by Hunter Bird. Bob Klein, Linda Shusett and Ruslan Idiyatov serve as Executive Producers for SHOWSEARCH.

For more on SHOWSEARCH and FNAM, visit

FNAM is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and is supported by:


Media Contact: Dr. Daniel Gary Busby | (949) 824-8243 |

Additional Contact: Festival of New American Musicals | (310) 317-9599 | 8896 Carson St., Culver City, CA 90232 |