The public debut of the new theatre/pop songwriting team of composer Will Van Dyke and lyricist Jeff Talbott happens Sept. 21 at Feinstein’s/54 Below with a 9:30 PM concert of their standalone songs, plus a helping of numbers from two musicals that they’re collaborating on. A View of the River is a largely sold-out 75 minutes of music featuring Broadway’s Kate Baldwin, Julia Murney, Taylor Trensch, Emily Padgett, Matt Doyle, Tamika Sonja Lawrence, Marcus Neville, Annaleigh Ashford and more.
The evening’s title comes from the pair’s new EP of pop songs released earlier this month. You can find it at amazon.com, iTunes and wherever digital music is sold.
In the partnership, Talbott writes lyrics and Van Dyke writes music and lyrics.
A View of the River at Feinstein’s/54 Below will also feature Nicholas Christopher (Whorl Inside a Loop), Josh Lamon (Finding Neverland), Jake Odmark (Kinky Boots) and Preston Sadleir (Big Love).
Van Dyke wrote the arrangements and orchestrations, and will music-direct the evening. The musicians include Allison Seidner (cello), Monica Davis (violin), Michael Aarons (guitar), Steve Gilewski (bass) and Rodney Howard (drums).
The show is billed as “a collection of songs about how we love and how we live, all told through the pop-infused melodies and thoughtful lyrics.” The evening will also feature highlights from their musicals Imagine Harry (“the story of a retired imaginary friend and his grown, lost client”) and Wintersong (“a story of love and jealousy set under the vast skies of the pioneer Nebraska Territory”).
Their musical Imagine Harry was a semi-finalist for the 2015 O’Neill Musical Theatre Conference and will get a starry showcase in October as part of the National Alliance for Musical Theatre’s Festival of New Musicals.
Will Van Dyke is a New York-based musical theatre writer and music director. His compositions include Winnie The Pooh Kids (Disney), The Lion King Jr. & Kids (Disney), The Devil’s Bitch (Playbill) and The Girls I’ve Like Liked (Ars Nova). Upcoming musicals include Magnificent Climb (with Rick Elice), Wintersong (with Jeff Talbott) and Writing Kevin Taylor (with Josh Halloway). Will orchestrated Andrew Lippa’s show The Life At The Party (Menier Chocolate Factory). His albums “Chasing the Day,” “Writing Kevin Taylor,” “Daylight,” “Constant” and “Make The Season Bright” (co-written with Matt Doyle) and his single “Another Time” are available wherever digital music is sold.
Talbott is the author of The Submission, which won the inaugural Laurents/Hatcher Award in 2011, was produced Off-Broadway by MCC Theater starring Jonathan Groff and Rutina Wesley and went on to win the Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award for Best New American Play in 2012, and has since been produced all over the country. His play A Public Education was a finalist for the 2015 O’Neill Playwrights Conference. His plays have had workshops and readings at TACT/The Actors Company Theatre (A Public Education, All the Stars in the Midnight Sky, The Gravedigger’s Lullaby), MCC (Three Rules for the Dragon) and Pioneer Theatre Company (A Public Education).
For more about the writers, visit willvandyke.com and jefftalbott.com.
For more about Feinstein’s/54 Below, visit the club’s website.