New Musicals Workshop

Pairing Young Talent with Experienced Writers

"The fact that such a program exists within the walls of a university is nothing short of extraordinary. Allowing students to experience a new musical workshop, to develop the skills necessary to thrive in such a setting, and to make connections with artists currently working in the field will certainly give them a significant advantage as they make the difficult transition from students to professionals.”
          - Michael Kooman and Christopher Dimond, Writers of Golden Gate and dani girl



    About the New Musicals Workshop

    Since 2007 the Millikin School of Theatre and Dance has been developing an innovative program known as the New Musicals Workshop. A quintessential example of Performance Learning, the New Musicals Workshop offers students and faculty opportunities to collaborate with professional writing teams as they develop new musicals intended for commercial production.

    These collaborative experiences offer our students a valuable first-hand look into the process of developing and rehearsing a new musical from the ground up, while providing the writers a safe laboratory environment where they may access our student talent pool, facilities, and departmental resources. Student performers, production managers, stage managers, dramaturgs, and accompanists all have opportunities to benefit from this unique experience. The professional relationships cultivated through these collaborations are mutually beneficial to our students and our visiting professionals, and often lead to "real-world" outcomes.  

    The New Musicals Workshop at Millikin University has grown in a relatively short time to be one of the few university programs in the country recognized by the Broadway community as an opportunity for established writers to develop new musicals destined for Broadway and beyond.

    "Our experience was exhaustive, exhilarating, and extraordinary. We're grateful to NAMT and the Millikin University New Musicals Workshop for this wonderful opportunity to water and fertalize our bastard!"

              -Marc Acito and Amy Engelhardt, Writers of Bastard Jones

    Membership in National Alliance for Musical Theatre

    Millikin's membership in the National Alliance for Musical Theatre (NAMT) has been a key element to the success of this program. The introductions made available through their annual new musicals festival have enabled us to host some of the most promising writing talents in the industry. The New Musicals Workshop was the recipient of the NAMT Writers' Residency Grant for three consecutive years.