Invitation-only readings of Trav'lin—The 1930s Harlem Musical, which was seen at the New York Musical Festival in 2010, will be presented September 28 at 11 AM and 4 PM at Nola Rehearsal Studios, 250 W. 54th St.
Paul Stancato, who helmed Trav’lin at NYMF and again at Seven Angels Theatre in 2017, will direct a cast including Tony nominee Brenda Braxton (Smokey Joe's Café, Chicago, Trav’lin at NYMF), Randy Donaldson (Wonderful Town, Annie Get Your Gun), Lothair Eaton (Starlight Express), Jacobi Hall, Tavia Riveé (Motown the Musical national tour), and Kissy Simmons (The Lion King).
John DiPinto is the music director.
Trav’lin celebrates the energy of the Jazz Age with a jazz and blues score by Harlem Renaissance composer J.C. Johnson (1896-1981). His tales of his life and times inspired the book by Gary Holmes and Allan Shapiro. In the musical, three couples of different ages play the game of love in 1930s Harlem. “At the center of the story, retired Pullman porter George Walker keeps his life neat and tidy until he befriends a stranger who is secretly the sweetheart he left behind 40 years before.”
J.C. Johnson wrote Bessie Smith’s signature tune, “Empty Bed Blues,” and collaborated with “Fats” Waller, Andy Razaf, Chick Webb, George Whiting, and Nat Schwartz.
The event is organized by Matt Schicker of Show Shepherd Consulting.