The company of York Theatre Company's Unexpected Joy recently began rehearsals for the new musical's upcoming New York premiere. Featuring a book and lyrics by Bill Russell (Side Show) and music by Janet Hood (Elegies for Angels, Punks, and Raging Queens), performances are set to begin April 24 for its run through May 20 at Saint Peter's. Opening night is set for May 3.
Courtney Balan (Falsettos), Allyson Kaye Daniel (Sistas: The Musical), Luba Mason (Pretty Filthy), and Celeste Rose (Sister Act) star in the production.
Under the direction of Amy Anders Corcoran (Escape to Margaritaville), the creative team will include Beth Falcone (music direction), James Morgan (set), Matthew Pachtman (costumes), Ken Wills (lights), Julian Evans (sound), Deb Gaouette (props), and AnnMarie Milazzo (vocal arrangements), with Julianne Menassian as production stage manager and Shanna Allison assistant stage manager, and casting by Stephen DeAngelis.
Unexpected Joy is described as "the story of three generations of female singers, long-held family tensions, and a week together where change is in the air. In modern day Cape Cod, Joy, a baby boomer and proud hippie, is holding a memorial concert for the other half of her popular musical duo, Jump & Joy. When her tightly wound conservative daughter and her sweet rebellious granddaughter arrive from Oklahoma, the sparks fly as one family seeks to find the common ground in their different values, dreams and goals. Unexpected Joy is a heartfelt and hilarious story that weaves folk-rock, pop, and blues in uniting a family that hasn't experienced true joy together for decades."