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Dr. Peter Peterson listens, advises and tests his patients. What good therapist wouldn’t? Particularly when your group includes: a bickering marriage just won’t go away, a rich kid who found his voice in Bob Dylan, a reluctant man who has longed for the same woman for 15 years, a young woman who has spent so much time in therapy she might get out, a billionaire who finds no solace in his money, a strong willed woman with a dark secret, and a provocative siren in high heels… At once a drama and a comedy with poignant and hilarious moments alike, Sessions is a new musical for a modern generation. After all, couldn’t we all use a little therapy?

THEATER INFO

THE ALGONQUIN THEATER
123 East 24th Street, New York, NY 10010 Between Park and Lexington Avenues Parking: Stop-N-Park, immediately adjacent to Theater (212) 730-4664 SUBWAY Take the #6 Train to East 23rd Street or the N,R,W Train to East 23rd Street Parking at 111 East 24th Street.

the cast

ALBERT TAPPER (Book, Music & Lyrics)
Albert Tapper is a writer, composer and lyricist having written three off-Broadway musicals. He wrote his first musical while still in college in which he was paid the unheard of sum for that time of twenty dollars. Since then he has written special material for regional productions and has produced two albums of his own songs. He composed the ballet The Seduction of Bathsheba whose premiere performance at Mechanics Hall was presented by the Central Massachusetts Symphony Orchestra. His Off-Broadway show, Imperfect Chemistry for which he composed the music and created the story, opened at the Minetta Lane Theater in New York in April of 2000. From Where I Stand, a musical revue, opened at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in March of 2003. Al has written five books on humor that were published by Andrews McMeel and Company and MJF Publishing. The books are titled, A Guy Goes Into a Bar; A Minister, A Priest, And a Rabbi; A Guy Goes Into a Doctor’s Office; A Guy Goes Into a Gym; and Flunked. His stage play Bettinger’s Luggage has been adapted as a film to be shot on the lower Eastside of New York in 2009. He has just completed a new non-musical novella titled, Conversations with Max. Al produced the award winning film Broadway: The Golden Age. He would like to thank Martha Rosenblatt who co-wrote, with him, the words for “I Saw the Rest of My Life.” A very special thanks to Dr. David Hescheles, his college roommate, on whom he based the character of Dr. Peterson. Al is a member of the Dramatists’ Guild of America and a member of ASCAP (American Society of Composers and Publishers).

THOMAS COTE (Director)
Thomas Coté (Director) –For Algonquin Productions, the critically acclaimed production of Shel Silverstein’s The Devil and Billy Markham. Also directed and developed new plays by Ken Jaworowski – Never Missed a Day and Certain Souls – and Allan Knee – The Jazz Age and The Last Seder. For the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, National Pastime by Tony Sportiello. For the WorkShop Theater, Levy Lee Simon’s Audelco-award-winning The Guest at Central Park West, Sharbari Ahmed’s Raisins Not Virgins and Rahti Gorfien’s When It Rains. Also, Libretto, by Robin Rothstein, published by Samuel French as a winner of its 2006 One-Act Playwriting Festival.

PENNY AYN MAAS (Choreography)
Penny’s first experience with the Algonquin was choreographing and directing “From Gershwin to Berlin” in May. Most recently she associate directed and choreographed “Kaboom!” for the Fringe Festival. Other choreography credits include “The Marriage Contract” and “The Pirates of Penzance” for the National Yiddish Theatre, “Thoroughly Modern Millie” for the Columbia Gorge Repertory Theatre, “The Mikado” and “Swingtime Canteen” for the Weston Playhouse and ‘Broadway Backwards – 3’ at the American Airlines Theatre on Broadway. With kids theatres in New York and New Jersey she has directed and choreographed productions of “High School Musical”, “Peter Pan”, “Tom Sawyer” and the original work “06880: The Musical” in Connecticut. She is also the Dance Director for the Triple Threat Theatre Camp. Penny has BFA in Musical Theatre Performance from Illinois Wesleyan.

JAMES HORVATH (Additional Choreography)
“SESSIONS” marks Jim’s first collaboration with Algonquin Theatre. Off Broadway choreographic credits: WALKING DOWN BROADWAY, at The Mint Theatre, Steve Williford director: THE BODY SHOP Westbeth Studio Theater, “readings only,” Sue Lawless director; NOT WAVING at Primary Stages with Kyra Sedgwick and VAUDEVILLE JIVE, Ensemble Studio Theatre Chris Smith, director. In June 2008, Mr. Horvath received EMMY Award recognition for his outstanding contribution to “The Prom Musical” ABC-OLTL, aired June ’07. Regional Theatre Credits: SHOWBOAT with Mickey Rooney: LA CAGE AUX FOLLES with Peter Marshall; Assoc. Choreographer with Gwen Verdon, reconstructing DAMN YANKEES (Jim partnered Ms. Verdon dancing “Mambo-Whose Got The Pain”) Jim received The Iron Mike Award by the US ARMY, Fort Bragg, NC for his choreography for THE MUSIC MAN with John Davidson and an Army ensemble of 63 “Desert Storm” cast members. Jim’s Broadway shows as a performer include; Bob Fosse’s DANCIN’ (79); CAN-CAN (partner with Zizi Jeanmaire); SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS with Debbie Boone: FIDDLER ON THE ROOF with Topol and Marcia Lewis; SWEET CHARITY at Lincoln Center (BCEFA Benefit, June 15th 1998) and NYC Opera’s production of PAJAMA GAME (Partner with Karen Ziemba) As Director/Producer; THE RUB – a short film, released 8/04 starring Michelle Pawk & Karen Ziemba, with an original score by Fran Minarik of RedcatStudio NYC. As a Writer presently being developed; ALTERED FLOWERS, circa 1948 (original screenplay); SUMMER SHORTS, a memoir. A collection of stories surviving family summer vacations, thanks and love to Jeanne and Ted.

JOHN McDERMOTT (Scenic Design)
John McDermott recently designed Lady by Craig Wright at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, also at Rattlestick American Sligo written and directed by Adam Rapp, It Goes Without Saying, CageLove, Saved Or Destroyed and many others. At the Flea, Bingo With the Indians (Rapp), The Breakup and The Happy/Sad, and the upcoming Elizabeth Swados musical Kaspar Hauser. Recently designed Prayer For My Enemy at Playwrights Horizons directed by Bartlett Sher. Other shows with Bart Sher include Three Sisters, Uncle Vanya, and The Singing Forest. Other designs include Frozen directed by Chay Yew at the Empty Space in Seattle and many other plays in Seattle where John was the Associate Set Designer at Seattle Rep 1995-2000. MFA from University of Washington, 1999

MICHELE PASQUA (Costume Design)
An apparel designer here in NYC, had the pleasure of serving as assistant costumer for ‘Sessions’ during its run in 2007. Previously, Michele has worked as a costume coordinator for community theaters including the Darien Arts Center and Curtain Call, both located in southern CT. For the past three years, Michele has worked as an assistant designer for three, well-known fashion houses in the garment district, in addition to creating her own designer label and custom-designing for personal clients throughout Fairfield County, CT and Westchester, NY. Michele is thrilled to be a part of this wonderful production, and wishes it much success in the future. A special thanks to Peter Barbieri for getting her involved with ‘Sessions’ in the first place!

BRANT THOMAS MURRAY (Lighting Designer)
Recent designs include Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Bryant Park, serving as a designer for Joe Saint and IMCD Lighting in The Tent and off-site venues (Spring 2009 & Fall 2009 Collections). Designers included Marc Jacobs, Isaac Mizrahi, and Christian V. Siriano. Other recent designs include: “Innovation 2009” for Bodiography Contemporary Ballet (dir: Maria Caruso), the premiere of “Bound in a Nutshell” for Moonwork, presented as part of the 2008 New York International Fringe Festival, “Inside/Out…Voices from the Disability Community” for Ping Chong & Company which had its world premiere at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, “Humbug” and “Dracula” for Premiere Stages (dir: John Wooten), “Fly” (dir: Ricardo Khan), “Asking for It” (dir: Lynne Taylor-Corbett), “A Little Night Music” for the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center, and “The Most Wonderful Wife” (Viking Player Productions). Previous designs for Ten Grand Productions include “Stopping to Listen” and “Masquerade”. In 2007 Brant designed the holiday window lighting for Maurice Villency’s flagship showroom in Manhattan. His previous window design was for the award winning “Pop-Up Book” Holiday Windows at Macy’s Herald Square, which were featured in the HGTV special, “Holiday Windows 2005”. A graduate of the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama and the University of Virginia School of Architecture, he currently is the Resident Lighting Designer and Technical Supervisor at Lincoln Center Institute for the Arts in Education.

JOSH LIEBERT (Sound Design)
Credits include: Off Broadway: Refuge of Lies (The Lion) Unrelated People (The Wild Project, Upright Citizen’s Brigade); Every Girl Gets Her Man (Jouissance Theatre). Regional: The Distance From Here (Montclair State University); Ice Glen, King John, The Taming of the Shrew, Martha Mitchell Calling, Kerfol (Shakespeare & Company); The Storm (Walking the Dog Theatre); One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Veronica’s Room (Studio Players); Beauty and the Beast, Phantom, Noises Off, Always Patsy Cline; (Cumberland County Playhouse); La Cage Aux Folles; (The Arts Trust); My Fair Lady, Evita, Chorus Line, Fiddler on the Roof, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Lend me a Tenor, Dracula. (Surflight Theatre). He holds an MFA from CCM (the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati) and a BFA from Ithaca College.

STEVEN GROSS (Musical Arrangements/Orchestrations/Musical Supervision)
Orchestration/Arrangement work includes: Pirates of Penzance (Lortel Nomination), Chess (Newest version with Abba), new musical about Marilyn Monroe premiering this summer in Europe, dance arranger for Berlin’s Friedrichstadt Palast. Also West German Radio Orchestra and Orchestra de Paris. As Music Director/Pianist includes: Broadway: Spelling Bee, Wedding Singer (Sub), Urinetown (also European Premiere), The Life (also European premiere), A Little Night Music (City Opera). Opera conducting work includes: Hamburg and Berlin State Operas, Zurich Opera, English National Opera. Concert conducting work includes: West German Radio Orchestra, Orchestre de Monte Carlo, Sao Paolo Symphony Orchestra, Macau Festival.

LARA MAERZ (Production Stage Manager)
Is thrilled to be making her New York debut with Sessions. Favorite shows include Orange Flower Water and Things Being What They Are at Steppenwolf, The Foreigner and Quilters at Tidewater Regional Repertory Theatre, and Noises Off and the world premiere of Quindaro while a graduate student at the University of Missouri/Kansas City where she received her MFA in Stage Management. Lara is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association.

JOAN PELZER (General Management)
Sharon Osowski and Joan Pelzer co-founded Liquid Productions in 2002 to produce original work. Liquid Productions produced Tony Sportiello’s LOL in the Midtown International Theatre Festival 2006. They co-produced the original Off-Off-Broadway comedies The Chosen Wife at Altered Stages, The Lunch at the Jose Quintero Theater, and R.S.V.P. and It’s A Girl Thing-A Cabaret both at the Laurie Beechman Theater. Liquid Productions has co-produced an annual Academy Awards networking event since 2002 at Candela with fashion shows by Aimee G. Liquid Productions was a co-producer of a staged reading of I Witness at the Duke on 42nd St Theater, an original play about the aftermath of 9/11 by David Grand, starring Michele Lee and Tony Lo Bianco. The company helped produce and was part of the planning committee for September Space’s annual Iron Skillet Cook-Off 2004 at Metronome, featuring the French Cookin Blues Band, zesty DJs Elvis Duran and Goumba Johnny as Masters of Ceremony and savory celebrities Steve Shirripa (‘Bobby Bacala’ on “The Sopranos”), The Central Park Guitar Man, David Ippolito, and crooner-cop, Daniel Rodriguez.

TONY SPORTIELLO (Executive Producer)
Has been the Artistic Director of Algonquin Theater Productions since its inception in 2004. Prior to that he was Artistic Director of the WorkShop Theater Company and Madison Avenue Theater Company. He has been involved with Sessions since the beginning and is thrilled to be a part of this very special experience. Thanks to all involved, especially his lovely fiancé, Kelli.

JASON HEWITT (Executive Producer)
Jason Hewitt’s productions have been nominated for six Audelco awards and five New York Innovative Theater Awards. Recent projects include Sessions (Peter Jay Sharp Theater at Playwrights Horizons), Same Train (Algonquin Theater), Early in the Mourning (staged reading at Signature Theatre featuring Estelle Parsons, Jerry Stiller, and Peter Frechette), Titanic Voices (The Waldorf Astoria, The National Arts Club, The New York Historical Society), Masquerade (Cherry Lane–2005 NYIT Award for Outstanding Scenic Design). Aside from his work as a producer, he was the Assistant Director for the National Tour of Oklahoma! and served as the Assistant Technical Production Manager for both the Broadway revival of Les Misérables and the Los Angeles production of Wicked. In General Management, twenty Broadway shows in ten years at the firm of Alan Wasser Associates: Les Misérables (Original and Revival), The Phantom of the Opera, Miss Saigon, Swan Lake, Fosse, Seussical, Putting It Together, Oklahoma!, The Sweet Smell of Success, Hollywood Arms, All Shook Up, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Life, Festen, LeStat, Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me, A Chorus Line, Grey Gardens & Journey’s End.

ALGONQUIN THEATER PRODUCTIONS
Since its inception in 2004, Algonquin Theater Productions has sought to move shows on to a higher level. Their first success was the critically acclaimed hit, The Devil and Billy Markham, but they have had numerous other triumphs for a young company, including a script optioned by HBO, scripts performed in Indianapolis and Dallas, seventeen one acts chosen for the Samuel French Short Play Festival, (two published) and a show presented at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. Sessions marks the first Off Broadway musical by the company and they would like to thank Al, Steve, Steven, Jason, the entire cast and crew and musicians, Liquid Productions and everyone at both Algonquin Theater Productions and Ten Grand Productions. A very special Thank You to Deborah Grimberg, Assistant Artistic Director Tracy Newirth and the Board of Directors.

TEN GRAND PRODUCTIONS, INC.
Is Jason Hewitt, Justin Nadal, Mary Geerlof, Max Weinstein, Emily G. Desjardins and Chris Johnson, a company of theater professionals driven by the creation and development of new work and innovative interpretations of classic texts. We share an investment in the community’s social consciousness by promoting charitable work that stands side by side with our artistic endeavors.

the cast
Robert Newman
Bertilla Baker
Scott Richard Foster
Dennis Holland
Ken Jennings
Kelly Maguire
Rachelle Rak
Trisha Rapier
Sky Seals
Steven Tedbeckler
Natalie Buster
Brittany Graham
Robert Koutras
Marsha Mercant
photos
credits
behind the Scenes
Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS The Annual Brodway Flea Market & Grand Auction