Charles Vincent Burwell & James Sasser
Burwell and Sasser’s work together includes CUBAMOR, an official selection of the Village Theatre's 2016 Beta Series and TheatreWorks Silicon Valley’s 2013 New Works Festival; Bottle Shock- based on the 2008 movie- featured at the NAPA Valley Opera House; and the new children’s musical Beautiful Game about soccer legend Pele commissioned by Making Books Sing. Their songs have been heard at venues including Lincoln Center, 54 Below at Studio 54, Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater in New York.
CUBAMOR is the contemporary story of two couples who fall in love despite the American-Cuban political, historical
and physical divide. They are propelled and challenged by the spiritual forces of the island, its music, and ultimately
the power of love.
BOTTLE SHOCK: The Musical IS Based on the 2008 feature film "Bottle Shock" (story by Ross Schwartz & Lynette Pabon and Jody Savin & Randall Miller, Screenplay by Jody Savin & Randall Miller and Ross Schwartz). Bottle Shock is the rock and roll retelling of the true story of the early days of Napa, California wine making featuring the famous blind Paris wine tasting of 1976 that has come to be known as "The Judgment of Paris." Currently in development at Ars Nova in New York, where Burwell & Sasser are part of the Uncharted Artists Residency.
BURWELL & SASSER WERE ARS NOVA "UNCHARTED" 2014 ARTISTS-IN-RESIDENCE. Uncharted residencies provide music/theater makers with peer support and artistic feedback as they work on first drafts of new musicals in monthly meetings curated by Kent Nicholson. First year residencies culminate in public concerts offering the writers the chance to debut their new material in front of a live audience. During the second year of their residencies, the writers participate in weeklong workshops of their musicals with top-notch directors and performers, culminating in Out Loud readings.
James D. Sasser
With a performance career spanning Broadway and off, to international operatic and concert stages, James has been involved for two decades in the development of dozens of new musical works on both sides of the table with organizations including Sundance White Oak Theatre Lab, The Goodspeed Opera House, The Vineyard Theatre, The Eugene O'Neill Center, Playwrights Horizons, The York Theatre, NY City Opera VOX, and New Dramatists, and many others. His other work as a writer includes the book to the rock musical Alice Cooper Goes to Hell; and book and lyrics for First Flight: The Story of the Wright Brothers, which was named the official musical for the Centennial of Flight celebration for North Carolina, written with Lt. Col James H Dilda (USAF-ret.). James was born in Tokyo to Air Force parents, and later grew up in West Germany and Napa, California. He is a Frank and Eva Buck Scholar, is a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music, has a certificate from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, and received a Master’s degree from the NYU-Tisch Graduate Musical Theater Writing program.
Charles Vincent Burwell
San Francisco, Caifornia native, Charles Vincent began his musical training with the piano at age seven. By the onset of his teenage years, he had learned to play most brass instruments and was beginning to work on compositions. A Congressional Scholar in Leadership, Burwell received a B.S. in Choral Music Education from Florida A & M University and is a recipient of the Robert Tisch Graduate Fellowship at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts.
Organizations that he has worked with include: the Lincoln Center Institute, City Center, the Katherine Dunham Institute, Trenton Educational Dance Institute (TEDI), National Dance Institute, Urban Bush Women, Festival del Caribe (Santiago de Cuba, Cuba), Ile Aiye (Salvador de Bahia, Brazil), and Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. He has composed music for the Cairo Opera House Ballet (Cairo, Egypt), National Dance Institute under the Artistic Direction of Jacques d’Amboise (Shanghai, China), and has sung at Carnegie Hall, (New York, NY). His music has been featured in the HBO documentary -Jacques D'Amboise in China -THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD and has been performed across the globe. Currently, Burwell serves on the faculty at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (The Ailey School).
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