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What’s In a Name? See for Yourself at Incline’s [title of show]

Sneak Peek by Laurel Humes of [title of show]: Incline Theatre

inclinetitleofshow

Lindsey Augusta Mercer and Erin McCamley in [title of show]

Warsaw Federal Incline Theater opens its new season September 29 with a show about writing a show – [title of show].

The bracketed no-name comes from the application form for submission of musicals for the New York Musical Theatre Festival. In this mostly true story, friends Hunter Bell (book) and Jeff Bowen (music and lyrics) had three weeks to submit their entry. Their idea: document creating the show or, as one of them says, “a musical about two guys writing a musical about two guys writing a musical.”

[title of show] doesn’t end there, though. No spoiler to say the musical was chosen and went on to be produced in 2004, making it to Off-Broadway in 2006 and to Broadway in 2008. The joys and struggles of those successes also are part of the show.

This is a “minimalist” musical, says Incline director Mike Sherman – four cast members, no production numbers, one keyboard. The story is clever, and the songs range from witty to poignant.

“It is hard to find musicals that have a groundedness to them,” Sherman said. “These are real people. I think everyone will be captivated by the way these people interact. You’ll root for them from the start, when they sing ‘Two Nobodies in New York.’”

But when a cast of four carries the show, “you have to have compelling actors,” Sherman said. “Our cast is awesome. They have brought out so much truth and honesty. And they are amazing singers.”

The cast includes Noah Berry, Hunter Hendrickson, Lindsey Augusta Mercer and Erin McCamley.

[title of show] at Incline is Sherman’s first professional directing job, although theatre is his career. He is in his fourth year as Theatre Department Chair at Walnut Hills High School, following a five-year tenure as drama director at Colerain High School. Sherman also has directed Fringe Festival pieces.

Coincidently, Sherman met [title of show] co-creator Hunter Bell this summer at an Educational Theatre Association conference (Bell is on the board).

“He confirmed we are taking the right approach,” Sherman said of his conversation with Bell. “The show is about the relationship of these four people and their struggles and changes through the creative process.”

[title of show] runs through October 16 at Warsaw Federal Incline Theater, 801 Matson Place, in the Incline District of East Price Hill. For tickets, call 513-241-6550 or go to www.cincinnatilandmarkproductions.com.