Featured Work: Amelia in America

In May of 2010, AMELIA in AMERICA received a workshop production in Minneapolis-St Paul. Composers Ann Hoopes and Robert Bartlett Johnson and writer Susan Galbraith were on hand for a process led by Ben Krywosz, Artistic Director of Nautilus Theater, and Sonja Thompson as Musical Director.

Robert and TomThe musical explores the icon Amelia Earhart and the trajectory of fame that is so much about America’s desire to create the next star, the role of image, and the merry-go-round that follows, spiraling out of control. AMELIA is also about a time that seems perilously close to our own recent history when the highs of 1928 soon thereafter collapsed and what followed in the thirties was the struggle to recapture hope and the American dream. G.P. Putnam (the publisher-publicist and Amelia’s husband), Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks Jr, Lady Astor, and Eleanor Roosevelt are all featured characters as well as Amelia and some of the other well-known aviatrix ladies of that time.

Some months before the workshop, George Fulginiti-Shakar served as Musical Director on a recording of Act 1 songs with a cast assembled in DC. The excerpts from the musical include both groups of singers.

  • 1928 – Company (Pamela Jusino, Cindy Hutchins, Laura Lewis, Debbie Thurow, Doug Bowles, John Boulanger, Lyon Stewart, Steve Stokes)
  • Rattle the Cages – GP Putnam solo (John Boulanger)
  • Courage – Amelia Solo (Pamela Jusino)
  • A Mother’s Heart – Amy Otis, Amelia’s Mother, Solo (Laura Lewis)
  • It’s Washington/We’re Depleted/Buddy Can You Spare a Dime?/Nuthin’ But Blues (Dieter Bierbrauer, JP Fitzgibbons, Vanessa Gamble, Bill Giness, Julie Kurtz, Mary Laymon, Andrea Leap, Joel Liestman, Ann Michels, Bill Scharpen)
  • She’s So Amelia – Paul Mantz (Joel Liestman)
  • Symphony – Amelia & Company (Pamela Jusino, Cindy Hutchins, Laura Lewis, Debbie Thurow, Doug Bowles, John Boulanger, Lyon Stewart, James Waters)

Listen to a sample from Amelia in America:

Top of Our Game

 

For more information about the music and this work, please contact Robert Bartlett Johnson at zkronkz@gmail.com