The initial concept for WYSIWYG the Musical was hatched in the Summer of 2008. It all started with a bunch of songs written in the last millennium about someone finding themselves and being comfortable with who they are. At that time, the Internet was just starting to become part of our daily lives. In early 2012, I placed an ad on craigslist that solicited singers for a unique musical concept. Kelly Zick responded to the ad and we setup an informal meeting near the Lamont School of Music to discuss the project.
Drew Bradley, who joined us at our initial meeting, recommended Tony Domenic transcribe the music. Tony and I worked together throughout 2013 and at some point he became the vocal coach and music director for the premiere. Along with Kelly and Drew, I hired Blake Nawa'a and Mark Del Monte to complete the cast. On September 14th, 2013 we held a stage reading of the initial concept at the Black Crown Piano Lounge in Denver Colorado.
A few weeks after the Black Crown performance, I met Evan Duggan at the Rooster Cat Café and hired him to help me with the book. Songs were added, expanded and changed. His goal was to capture the true, very personal story that was being played out for him in real time. At some point, Evan assumed the role of Director too and we planned our first theater run for Spring 2014.
It's not easy for an independent production to find rehearsal space in Denver, but with my connection at First Baptist Church and the casts' relationship with Lamont School of Music we were able to make do. We spent the first half of 2014 tweaking the script, rehearsing and refining the production. The premiere was on June 6th, 2014 at Denver's Crossroads Theater. Our closing performance was the matinee on June 8th.
But that's not quite the end of this story, in the months following our 2014 performance of WYSIWYG, April escapes from the pages of the musical and the web to assume her place in the real world. Today, April Alsup calls Denver Colorado her home. In 2017, she premiered her music theater work; The Age of Sisyphus, and is currently in the development phase of Eigg, the Burgess and the Laird. She is proud to be a part of Denver's thriving theatrical community. Visit her website at: www.alsup.org
On July 12th, 2018 we debuted our new 90 minute production of WYSIWYG at the Vintage Theater in Denver. It was a sneak preview and photo op before heading off to New York City to participate in the 10th Annual Planet Connections Theatre Festivity, where we won one of the festival's most prestigious awards! By mid-August we were back in Denver for a weekend of shows at the Avenue Theater. It was a whirlwind for sure, but along the way we accumulated 12 award nominations for music theatre excellence, including: five Off-Broadway awards and seven regional Broadway World awards.
The trajectory of a new music theatre work is never cast in stone and even with all the success we had with the show early on we knew we could do better. The pandemic gave us the opportunity to focus on the script and supplementing the score with an ensemble. We added David Traugh to the music development team and by the end of 2022 we had completed our overhaul of the show. The latest performance package is a two act musical that expands on all the great moments of the original script with inventive dialogue and plotlines, there's a new music arrangement with additional songs and a complete soundtrack is available on all the major streaming audio sites now too. Stay tuned!