James created the critically acclaimed solo performance Word of Mouth directed by Eve Ensler and produced by Mike Nichols. His live action short film, Trevor, won an Academy Award in 1994, and inspired The Trevor Project, a non-profit organization that operates the only 24-hour suicide prevention helpline for GLBT teens. Working with young people in Cambodia, Tibet and Bosnia, Mr. Lecesne created The Road Home: Stories of Children of War, which premiered at The Asia Society in NYC and was presented at The International Peace Initiative at the Hague. Absolute Brightness, will be published by Harper Collins in Fall 2007.
Director / Choreographer
Off-Broadway: Soon Of A Mornin—Lions theatre; Regional: Once On This Island—Virginia Stage, Actors Theatre Of Louisville, La Mirada Center for the Performing Arts (Robby and Drama-League Award for Best Director, Ovation nomination for Best Choreography and Best Musical), Gerry staged the Island benefit at The Winter Garden Theatre on Broadway. Sammy and Me—Hanger Theatre, Ain’t Misbehavin’—Actors Theatre of Louisville, Damn Yankees, Anything Goes, Annie Get Your Gun at the Madrid Theatre in California; Choreography: Laura Comstock Dog Punching Dog, Joseph...Dreamcoat—San Jose Musical Theatre Center, A Saint She Ain’t, My Fair Lady, Side By Side at the Berkshire Theatre Festival; TV: Rosie O’Donnell show, Designing Women, Major Dad, Golden Palace. Gerry is a SSDC dance break winner and a national Irene Ryan winner.
Musical Supervisor
Randy Redd made his Broadway debut in PARADE directed by Harold Prince at Lincoln Center. He appeared as "Britt Craig" in the National Tour of PARADE and as "Bingo Little" in the American premiere of Andrew Lloyd Webber's BY JEEVES directed by Alan Ayckbourn. Off-Broadway and regional credits include SOME MEN (Second Stage) by Terrence McNally directed by Trip Cullman, BLOOD BROTHERS (Best Actor Nomination), SMOKE ON THE MOUNTAIN, FOREVER PLAID (Connecticut Critic's Circle Award), ONE MAN BAND with Academy Award-winner James Lecesne, the 25th Anniversary Production of PUMP BOYS AND DINETTES (Metrolina Theater Award and Charlotte Theater Award) with Jim Wann and EMPIRE. He has worked at such reputable theaters as Manhattan Theater Club, The Atlantic Theater Company, Naked Angels, The Kennedy Center, The Goodspeed Opera House, The Geffen Playhouse, The York Theater Co., Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park, Studio Arena, Pittsburgh CLO, Charlotte Repertory Theater, Coconut Grove Playhouse, Stamford Center For The Arts, The Cape Playhouse, The Actor's Playhouse and many others. Film and television credits include KINSEY directed by Academy Award winner Bill Condon, The Wright Verdicts (CBS), Fame L. A., Good Morning America, the Today Show (NBC), the Tony Awards (CBS), the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (NBC). His first play, MISSISSIPPI SUGAR was developed and produced at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. Composer credits include: MONKEY SHINES (No Pants Theater Co.), HOLD (American Living Room Festival at Lincoln Center), JACOB STERLING: FOR CRYING OUT LOUD (Atlantic Theater Co.) with David Pittu and THERE'S THE STORY with Tim McCracken. Randy teaches at NYU/CAP21, The Atlantic Theater Company and is a teaching artist with Camp Broadway, Broadway Classroom, Arts Horizons, DreamYard, the BRAVO Network's ON WITH THE SHOW. Numerous musical direction credits include the MACY'S THANKSGIVING DAY PARADE (2004, 2005 and 2006), ANIMAL FARM (Synapse Productions), SMOKE ON THE MOUNTAIN, PUMP BOYS AND DINETTES, BUFFALO GALS, BROADWAY SPOTLIGHT (Ars Nova), A HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN FILM and REALLY ROSIE (Atlantic Theater Co.). In concert: Town Hall, Alan Light's Live From Home, New Voices Collective, Symphony Space, St. John The Divine, Ars Nova, Dominion, The Knitting Factory, Cooper Union and Joe's Pub. CD: LUCKY STIFF (York Theater Co.), PARADE (Original Cast Recording for RCA), Jason Robert Brown's WEARING SOMEONE ELSE'S CLOTHES, NEO (York Theatre Co.) and RING OF FIRE (Original Cast Recording for Time-Life). His first solo CD, RANDY REDD/AMERICAN, will be recorded this December in Nashville. He most recently appeared on Broadway in RING OF FIRE directed by Richard Maltby.
Music / Books & Lyrics
Lynn Ahrens (book and lyrics) and Stephen Flaherty (music) won Broadway’s theatrical triple crown--Tony Award, Drama Desk Award and Outer Critics Circle Award for the score of the Ragtime (based on the E.L. Doctorow novel) with book by Terrence McNally. Ragtime was also nominated for London’s Olivier Award as Best Musical for its West End Premiere. Ahrens and Flaherty received two Academy Award nominations and two Golden Globe nominations for the songs and score of Anastasia, Twentieth Century Fox's first feature animation. They are the co-creators of the hit Broadway musical Once On This Island (first produced off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons) which was awarded London's Olivier Award as Best Musical, and received eight Tony Award nominations, NAACP Theatre Awards for Best Musical and Best Playwright, Drama Critics Circle and Outer Critics Circle nominations. They co-wrote Seussical, based on the works of Dr. Seuss, which premiered on Broadway in 2000 and received Grammy and Drama Desk nominations. Seussica is now the most frequently performed stock and amateur show in America. They have premiered three shows at Lincoln Center Theatre: My Favorite Year, A Man of No Importance, with book by Terrence McNally (Outer Critics Circle Award, Best Musical and Best Score) and Dessa Rose (Audelco Award, Best Musical, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle nominations.) Off Broadway: Lucky Stiff, (Playwrights Horizons, Richard Rodgers Award, Washington's Helen Hayes Award as Best Musical.) Most recently they were represented on Broadway with original songs for Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Life. Concert works include With Voices Raised, commissioned by the Boston Pops orchestra. Their latest musical, The Glorious Ones, just premiered at Pittsburgh Public Theater. Individually, Ms. Ahrens is the lyricist and co-book writer for A Christmas Carol, with music by Alan Menken, which ran for ten years at Madison Square Garden. Her teleplay adaptation of A Christmas Carol, recently premiered on NBC, starring Kelsey Grammer. (Hallmark Entertainment). She wrote original lyrics for the feature film Camp (IFC Films). For her work in network television as a songwriter, creator and producer, Ms. Ahrens has received the Emmy Award and four Emmy nominations. Her songs are a mainstay of the famed animated series Schoolhouse Rock. Mr. Flaherty wrote the incidental music for Neil Simon's play Proposals on Broadway. His Ragtime Symphonic Suite premiered at the Hollywood Bowl under the baton of John Mauceri. Other notable commissions include those from Carnegie Hall and the Guggenheim Museum. Most recently he wrote the musical score for Loving Repeating: A Musical of Gertrude Stein, based on texts by Ms. Stein as adapted and directed by Frank Galati, which was produced by Chicago’s About Face Theatre and the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art (Jefferson Award, Best New Musical 2006). He is a founding member of the acclaimed theatre company, Drama Dept. Ahrens and Flaherty shows have been recorded by RCA/Victor, Sony, Decca Broadway, Varese Sarabande, Atlantic and JAY Records. A print anthology of their music, “The Ahrens and Flaherty Songbook,” is published by Warner Brothers Publications. They both serve on the governing body of the Dramatists Guild of America and are members of ASCAP and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. They co-chair the Dramatists Guild Fellows Program for emerging writers and are pleased to welcome tonight’s talented new writers.
Associate Producer
Lesley is a theater producer with over fourteen years experience creating special events, themed experiences and educational programs on Broadway and across the country. From six years, she served as Producing Director of Camp Broadway, an award winning theater company, developing and overseeing all aspects of their year-round performing arts programs, educational projects, special events and corporate partnerships. In addition, she has worked on Broadway’s Damn Yankees starring Bebe Neuwith and later Jerry Lewis; the national tour of Damn Yankees starring Mr. Lewis; Duke Ellington’s Play On! and the Outer Critics Award-nominated Jam On The Groove. She was Associate Producer for London‘s West End Production of Damn Yankees and Budd Schulberg’s Broadway production of On The Waterfront starring Penelope Ann Miller and Ron Eldard. Lesley is a member of The League of American Theaters and Producers, where she serves on the education committee.
Producing Associate
Gary Solomon, Jr., a native of New Orleans, LA, is in his final year at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Recent producing credits include a sold-out run of the musical The Full Monty as a fundraiser to provide direct aid to artists returning to New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, a held-over run of The Last Five Years, and an award winning production of The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!). At age 21 Gary has been instrumental in the creation of over 150 theatrical works to date. Gary co-founded The Children’s Leukemia League, an organization that grew into a group of over 200 young adults who raised funds and awareness specifically for children of their age bracket living with leukemia. He also served for many years as the Chair of the Children’s Wing for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and is an avid volunteer for both the New Orleans AIDS Task Force and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
Production Desingner
Amanda hails from the Canadian prairies. Most recently she has designed A Marriage of Figaros at the Manhattan School of Music, The Vietnamization of New Jersey at The Beckett Theatre, and A Movie Star Has to Star in Black and White at NYU. She is the resident designer for The Peddie School and is a teaching artist for The Roundabout Theatre Company. She has worked with Moises Kaufman, Christopher Durang, and Gordon Ostrowski. Amanda has a BFA in Design for the Theatre from Concordia University in Montreal and an MFA in Design for Stage and Film from NYU's Tisch School for the Arts. Visit
Pianist / Conductor / Vocal Coach
David moved to New Orleans 11 years ago after falling in love with the city’s unique cultural heritage. He received a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison as well as a Master of Music degree in piano performance from the University of Texas-Austin. His primary teachers were Carroll Chilton and David Renner. He has served as musical director and pianist for numerous musicals at the high school, college, and professional level. Credits include: A Little Night Music, Grease, Guys and Dolls, Oliver, Wizard of OZ, Oklahoma, Sleepover, Cinderella, Forever Plaid, and Lies and Legends: The Musical Stories of Harry Chapin. In addition to his musical theatre work, he is active as a solo artist performing romantic and twentieth century classical piano repertoire as well as his own improvisational piano compositions which are rooted in the New Orleans piano styles of Professor Longhair and James Booker. He has served as a staff accompanist for dancers, vocalists, and instrumentalists at the University of New Orleans, Loyola University, and Tulane.
Stage Manager
§ Desirée is a Loyola University graduate. She has recently returned from Orlando where she worked in Walt Disney Entertainment as a production assistant on such projects as Amway International Convention, Festival of the Masters art show, ESPN the Weekend, and Holiday Wishes Firework Spectacular. When in Florida, she also worked on the entertainment production team for the Daytona 500 NASCAR race pre-show. Her other stage management roles include Okra, Kimberly Akimbo, and The Sunken Living Room (Southern Rep); Spring Awakening (EgoPo Productions); and Nickel and Dimed, Camwood on the Leaves, and the Wreck on the Five-Twenty-Five (Loyola University).