LaChiusa musical among eight projects to get funds

A new Michael John LaChiusa musical co-produced by Off Broadway’s Public Theater and two other shows in the works with Gotham troupes are among the recipients of eight grants from the National Alliance for Musical Theater.

In the org’s second year of doling out coin from its National Fund for New Musicals, grants will total $50,000 toward the development of new legit tuners at non-profit theaters that are members of NAMT.

LaChiusa and Sybille Pearson’s “Giant,” based on the 1952 novel that also was the basis for the James Dean pic, received funds for a full production co-produced by Dallas Theater Center and the

Public with support from Dallas Summer Musicals. Show was seen last year in an earlier incarnation at Signature Theater in Arlington, Va.

Also nabbing grants for full productions (which get between $10,000 and $20,000 each) are Washington D.C.’s Ford Theater for Adam Abraham, Eric R. Cohen, Marc Madnick and Michael Weiner’s “Liberty Smith”; the Human Race Theater Company in Dayton, Ohio, for Gregg Coffin’s “Right Next to Me”; and TheaterWorks in Palo Alto, Calif., for Larry Grossman, Carol Hall and Duane Poole’s “A Christmas Memory.”

Scoring funds to support a workshop or a reading (up to $6,000 each) are two Gotham companies: CAP 21 for Ryan Cunningham and Joshua Salzman’s “Next Thing You Know” and Lark Play Development Center for “Love Kills” by Kyle Jarrow (“A Very Merry Unauthorized Children’s Scientology Pageant”). Also getting reading/workshop coin is the Village Theater in Issaquah, Wash., for Beth Blatt and Daniel Green’s “Oneida.”

Getting up to $2,500 for early developmental work is Theater Latte Da in Minneapolis for Dan Chouinard and Peter Rothstein’s “Through Ellis Island.”

In addition to the new tuner fund, NAMT also operates an annual Festival of New Musicals that serves as an industry showcase for brewing tuner projects. That program has helped launch shows including Broadway vets “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and “The Drowsy Chaperone.”

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