It’s pretty rare for a work to be considered for a prestigious award when it’s not even completed. That essentially happened with Guess Who’s Coming to Seder? A Delicious New Musical, a musical by Nashville playwright/composer/lyricist Randi Michaels Block that has its first full Music City production this week.
Block was one of eight finalists for the 2010 Fred Ebb Award for aspiring musical theater songwriters based on a submission of four songs, an outline and character descriptions that later evolved into the show presented this Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at Gordon Jewish Community Center (801 Percy Warner Blvd.). The aid and encouragement of Ted Swindley (Always…Patsy Cline, which will be on Broadway later this year) was instrumental in the show’s development; its first readings were at Darkhorse Theater in 2011, followed by a staged reading at New York City’s York Theatre and a production at the Tulsa Project Theatre in Oklahoma in 2012.
What’s Guess Who’s Coming to Seder? about? Sarah Friedman decides to hold her first Passover Seder dinner for eight non-Jewish friends (incidentally, Passover this year began Monday evening and ends the evening of Tuesday, April 2). As the dinner progresses and the wine flows, according to the description provided by the production, “their hilarious, irreverent and sometimes poignant stories and confessions reveal personal truths and conflicts about God, love, money, friendship, faith and the pursuit of freedom…and by the end of the show, everyone at the dinner table has been transformed!” The show is recommended for ages 15 and up.
In addition to penning book, music and lyrics Block directs this production with Dan Serafini as musical director. The cast is led by actress and country music artist Lari White. Also featured are Michael Visconti, Joshua Payne, Charlynn Carter, David Williams, Tatum Harvey, Francine Berk, Jonathan Scott Roth and Sandy Flavin.
Performances start at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday (March 28) and Saturday (March 30) and 3:30 p.m. Sunday (March 31). For tickets ($25-$29) visit ticketsnashville.com or call (615) 713-0928; visit guesswhoscomingtoseder.com for more details about the show.
*Logo courtesy Guess What’s Coming Productions, LLC.