Shetler Studios, 244 W. 54th St., 12th fl. (PH1)
Sunday March 3rd / Submission deadline passed
Session 1: coaching at 4:30, pitching at 5:30
Session 2: coaching at 5:30, pitching at 6:30
You meet a producer at a party, and have two minutes to interest him in your work. Do you have the skill to sell yourself? Here's a chance to practice your pitching with real producers who are open to and interested in meeting you. Okay, they probably won't option you on the spot, but they'll give you valuable feedback about your work and your ability to talk about it. And you'll have the opportunity to start developing a relationship. And that's what this business is all about. Relationships.
The Speed Date is the only event I know of that gives writers the chance to meet high level producers one-on-one in a room. To me, that's what makes the Speed-Dates so valuable. And you do it with kindness, which I value in life. ~Vincent Amelio (How Alfo Learned to Love)
Click here: WriterSpeedDateApp-85-75 for application. Please fill out and email to TRUStaff1@gmail.com (PLEASE - add your name to the document name, and put it first when you "save as") - we already have a lineup of 11 producers, so check them out below, and apply!
We'll have eleven producers lined up, from both the commercial and not-for-profit worlds, all with an interest in new projects; we also may have eleven aspiring producers from our Producer Development program. So you'll be pitching to as many as 22 producers in total! Come with a willingness to learn, because the real value is the chance to practice your pitching. And you'll be getting invaluable coaching from experts, as well. And did we mention the wine and snacks afterwards?
Confirmed producers include:
- Evan Bernardin, producer/general manager (We Are The Tigers, Afterglow, Counting Sheep; National tours Million Dollar Quartet, Charlie Brown Christmas);
- Cate Cammarata, producer (My Life Is a Musical, The 365 Women's Festival), artistic associate of Rhymes Over Beats hip hop theater company;
- Luis Cardenas, artistic director Open Hydrant Theatre;
- Rashad V. Chambers, producer (American Son, It Happened in Key West, Ain't Too Proud);
- Nolan Doran, producer (Head Over Heels), writer/director;
- William Franzblau, producer (Rocktopia, Tony Award-nominated Say Goodnight Gracie, American Buffalo and Wonderland on Broadway; tour of Little House on the Prairie the Musical; off-Broadway Sistas, Jewtopia, Evil Dead the Musical, Respect, Illuminate);
- Suzanne Gilad, producer (The Other Josh Cohen, Angels in America revival, Natasha, Pierre..., Significant Other);
- John Lant, indie producer (Frankenstein the musical, It Came from Beyond, Fabulous), artistic director WriteAct Repertory;
- Ken Waissman, producer (Grease, Agnes of God, Torch Song Trilogy);
- Claudia Zahn, former managing director Malibu Playhouse.
- Frank Zuback, producer (Taking Leave, American Soldier, Roof of the World).
Coaches: Diana Calderazzo, Bailie Slevin, Samantha Saltzman
Trailing Producers to include actor/producer Xander Chauncey*, entertainment attorney Lee Feldshon*, writer Mara Lee Gilbert, casting pro/aspiring producer Charlie Hano, Sharon Kilfoyle, writer/producer Dickson Lane*, artistic associate at Surflight Theater Nicholas Kaminski, TV, film and theater producer/writer Charles Nuckolls, producer Joanne Phillips (Dangerous the musical), writer/producer Jeffery Lyle Segal*, director/producer Mark Sklawer.
[*members and alumni of TRU's Producer Development program]
I participated in TRU's Writer's Speed Date Pitch session last year, and got a LOT out of it! I found it so motivating to have a deadline to create production assets and prepare myself for meeting producers. My partner and I worked tirelessly for days before the event to make sure we were in top form before presenting (as writers) to the "producers" on hand. My experience was one of the rare occasions where several producers expressed real interest in my work. Later, one attended my reading, and followed up with a coffee meeting to talk financing. We're still in touch. Again, this is never promised, but it does happen for some of us. In my opinion, the price of $85 for all that value is a BARGAIN! ~Ed Zareh (Long Lost John)
I've had follow-up meetings with two people I met from the event. and provided scripts to three others. I also met some fellow playwrights, and through a chain of introductions coming out of that, I'm now working on a possible film deal in Los Angeles. If you have a project where you'd like to practice and receive feedback on your pitch; potentially make some connections that would be useful for script development or early production; and meet some other playwrights -- this is an ideal opportunity. ~William Roetzheim
is the founder of Financial Wellness Companion, Entertaining Finance, and is the current Sales Trainer at MediaRadar. She has made a study of language and how people communicate value, be it screenwriting, playwriting, sculpting, performing, painting, or commercial sales. Bailie helps to translate the creator’s passions to others in a business setting. With her15 years in the personal financial planning industry, Bailie developed a niche in the arts and freelance communities, specializing in working with people with an uneven income. She has also spent significant time in the theatre industry as a stage manager, general manager, and producer. She is a Life Purpose Life Coach and a New York Mental Health Peer Specialist. She lives in New York City with her rescue pup, Lorelai.
Current Directing Projects: Drama League Gala Honoring Steve Martin, and Bryant Park Christmas Skatetacular. Resident Director: Matilda the Musical (1st National Tour). Assistant Resident Director: Matilda the Musical (Broadway). Additional Associate/Assistant Directing credits: Southern Comfort (The Public), Sarah Brightman’s Dreamchaser World Tour, On the Town (Barrington Stage), An Iliad (National Tour), Academia Nuts, and multiple shows at NYMF and FringeNYC. Select Directing credits include: The Arkadina Project, Urinetown, 210 Amlent Ave, and Madam Fury’s Traveling Show. Drama League Directing Fellow. www.samanthasaltzman.com
Evan Bernardin Productions is a general management and production company specializing in consulting and management for theatrical productions. They have supported the development of projects headed for the Broadway and Off-Broadway markets. National Tours: Million Dollar Quartet, Charlie Brown Christmas Live. Select Off Broadway: Afterglow, Must, Diaspora, Counting Sheep. EBP has worked with the New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF), Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS (BCEFA), Fringe (NY & LA), The Workshop Theatre Company, and The Make A Wish Foundation; collaborative projects include performances at Lincoln Center, The United Nations, Cornell University, Georgetown's Gaston Hall, The Culture Project, The Ohio Theatre, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. www.evanbernardinproductions.com
is an Off-Broadway producer, director and dramaturg in NYC, dedicated to the development of new plays and musicals. She is the Founder and Executive Producer of CreateTheater's 2022 New Works Fest, the Associate Artistic Director for Rhymes Over Beats Hip Hop Theater Collective and has been the Literary Manager for Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU) for ten years. Off-Broadway: The Assignment, My Father's Daughter. Regional: My Life Is a Musical (Bay Street Theater). Cate's company CreateTheater, has been helping writers develop and produce new work since 2016. During the shutdown of 2020-2022 CreateTheater developed and/or produced more than 70 shows with online readings, workshops and dramaturgical guidance. For this work Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU) has honored her with the TRU Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2022. Cate holds an MFA in Dramaturgy from SUNY Stony Brook and is an Associate Professor of Theatre Arts at CUNY Baruch College. www.CateCammarata.com www.CreateTheater.com
LUIS REYES CARDENAS
is Co-Founder and Co-Artistic Director of Open Hydrant Theater Company, the first ensemble professional theater company in the South Bronx. Film: Shakespeare High Executive Produced by Kevin Spacey and From Bronx to Yale Executive Produced by The Guardian. Actor: Fools in Love at MET, BAM, Lincoln Center Boro-Linc and Open Hydrant, Balm in Gilead with Barefoot Theatre Company and Durang, Durang at Open Hydrant. Playwright: Play The Papers For Lupe, Visa Decline, Place of Assembly and Last Exit In New York. He is currently a member of the New Play Development at Laguardia Performing Arts Center and a member of The Puerto Rican Traveling Theatre Company's Playwright Unit. He is the Director of Individual Events at The Stanford National Forensic Institute at Stanford University.
RASHAD V. CHAMBERS
is a global producer, talent manager and lawyer. He recently produced the world premiere of It Happened In Key West at the Charing Cross Theatre in London. His Broadway productions include American Son, The Inheritance, Betrayal and Ain't Too Proud - The Life and Times of The Temptations. In addition, Rashad produced the world premiere of The Erlkings at the Beckett Theatre in New York. He also produced an independent romantic comedy entitled True to the Heart, which won five awards at the Long Island International Film Expo and was an official selection of the Big Apple Film Festival. His short films, Hunger and Click, were official selections of the Urbanworld Film Festival, Hollywood Black Film Festival and Pan African Film Festival. Rashad is currently developing a TV series with Stacy Sutphen, Damon Sharpe, Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds and Electus. He has also developed and produced concerts series at 54 Below, 42West, Ars Nova and the 92Y in Tribeca. A licensed attorney in New York and Connecticut, Rashad earned his JD and MBA degrees from The Ohio State University and BA in Business Administration from Morehouse College. He is the Founder and President of Esquire Entertainment, a New York based talent management and production company. www.esquireentertainment.com
is a writer, director, and producer who creates new works across theatre, music and film. He has worked with hit-makers and artists like Desmond Child, Michael Mayer, Neil Patrick Harris, Merce Cunningham and Margo Lion to name a few. His original theatre works include The Lesson, Woody - A New Fairy Tale (Main Street Musicals winner), The Spectrum (Azalea Film Festival winner), The King (L.A. Indie Film Festival winner) and music for Ayodele Casel's While I Have the Floor (Spoleto Festival). He was recently Co-Producer and Assistant Director for the Broadway musical Head Over Heels with songs of the Go-Go's. Past Broadway: Associate Director for Michael Moore’s The Terms of My Surrender and Assistant Director of the star studded one night concert Hillary on Broadway. Doran has also worked as Associate Director for CHESS at Kennedy Center, Assistant Director of Jamboree starring Sutton Foster & Jonathan Groff at NY City Center, Associate Director for Wigstock with Lady Bunny & Neil Patrick Harris filmed for HBO as part of Wig and Assistant on the Sony Classics release of The Seagull starring Annette Bening and Saoirse Ronan. Current projects include: The Museum of Broadway in Spring 2020, The Secret Life of Bees at The Atlantic Theatre, The Golden Girls Musical Parody: Pride Edition at HERE, and a concert of his original work My Eclectic Life at HERE in NYC.
created and produced the recent Broadway Rocktopia, the Tony Nominated Best Play Say Goodnight Gracie, produced David Mamet’s American Buffalo on Broadway, and the tour of Little House on the Prairie the Musical starring Melissa Gilbert. He also served as the Executive and Lead Producer for Broadway’s Wonderland. He licensed and produced the off-Broadway shows, SISTAS the Musical (recently shot and broadcast on BET, now in its sixth year off Broadway), This One's for the Girls, Jewtopia, Evil Dead the Musical, the male intellect: an oxymoron, Respect and ILuminate (America’s Got Talent Finalist) while developing several Broadway shows including Paramount’s Crazy People and the new Rupert Holmes play, Kennedy/Reagan. He produced and Co-Directed Rocktopia for the 2016 PBS National Pledge Broadcast with a 2017 tour. As Chief Executive Officer of the high technology company, KATrix Inc. he created strategic alliances with the Walt Disney Company, Microsoft Corporation, MGM and the Intel Corporation. In the early nineties, Mr. Franzblau co-founded Interfilm Inc., a publicly traded company combining interactive technologies with cinematic art. He was the driving force in putting together an $18 million initial public offering underwritten by Smith Barney and subsequently facilitated the sale of the company via a reverse triangular merger with Palatin Technologies, Inc. From 1990 through 1992 Mr. Franzblau served as producer of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles touring show, a 21-month tour involving 500 appearances in 200 cities and 10 countries, for which he managed all aspects of the business development and operations. The tours grossed over $60 million in sponsorships, ticket sales and merchandising as well as spinning off a double platinum record and a national pay-per-view. Previous to the above Mr. Franzblau served as Executive Producer of three tours of the Moscow Circus on Broadway and North America and produced the touring productions of BEATLEMANIA. In 2021 he produced MANSlaughter (episodic podcast) which reached # 1 podcast in the US, Canada, UK and Australia.
is a Grammy and Tony Award-winning theatre producer. Broadway credits include: Angels in America (Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play); Moulin Rouge!, Jagged Little Pill (Grammy Award), Company (starring Patti LuPone). Off-Broadway: The Other Josh Cohen, A Commercial Jingle for Regina Comet. UK tour of Rock of Ages. West End production of The Last Five Years. New musical The Outsiders will premiere at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago. In development: Burlesque. Sue runs the US division of Creative Rights International, and is the Recruitment Co-Chair of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. She is passionate about arts education and loves taking her children to age-inappropriate shows. Visit www.InFineCompany.com for more info.
(Creative Producer / Artistic Director / Consultant) 40-year veteran in the entertainment in over 700 television, film, theatre/music tours, and live theater. Pre-Covid: Production Manager at Carnegie Hall since 2006-2020 season for over 2,000 events. Award-winning producer, director, writer, lighting/set designer at Interlochen, Cal Arts, Ricardo Montalban, Powerhouse, Glendale Center, Hollywood Playhouse, Long Beach Playhouse, the Jewel Box Theatre Center and Write Act Repertory garnering DramaLogue, Diamond, ADA, NAACP Awards, LA Weekly and Backstage Pick of the Week, Garland and Valley Theatre (LA) nods. Executive Producer New Frequency - Theatre of the Mind 150 original Radio Dramas for SIRIUS/XM Radio's Sonic Theatre - Ranked #1 Radio show. Mentored with Jonathan Sanger & Chanticleer Films for two shorts that won an Emmy and an Oscar, Howard Storm CBS Radford and TRU PDMP Master fellow under Jane Dubin and Jennifer Issacson. Directed TV / Pilots Symphology, Carrot Talk, BET JAZZ Master Awards (1&2), Toronto Independent Shorts Awards, Funiki-Jam Season 2, and Anonymous Confessions. 14 Off-Broadway Lead Producing (union and non-union) credits include FABULOUS! 2By Tennessee Williams, Lili Marlene, Frankenstein, It Came from Beyond, Wicked Frozen, Teen Party Massacre, SWING!, Wicked City Blues, Great Cat Massacre, GEEKS! (St. Luke's & Actors Temple). Recent Pre-COVID LA productions: Finest Hour (Winston Churchill), Wicked Wicked Mae West, The Lester Young Story, and Frank and Eva. TV/Film Credits include King of New York, The Freshman, Army of Darkness, Renegade, Power Rangers, and HBO Max's The Flight Attendant (CCO Supervisor). Tours include Phantom of the Opera, Singin' in the Rain, Gypsy, and Evita. Current Off-Broadway pre-production Pearl Bailey Musical (with Tony winning team members of Dreamgirls! and Hamilton). Development Director/Consultant - Twisted Media NYC, Nathan Murphy Prod, Gatehouse Entertainment, Tin Mirror Prod and Trinity Theatrics for new network and streaming content. COVID Compliance Officer for Film/TV/Theatre.
is one of only two producers in the history of Broadway to have a musical run over 3000 performances and a play run over 1000. (The other producer he shares this distinction with is the legendary David Merrick.) Waissman developed and produced the original Broadway production of Grease as well as two of Broadway’s longest running plays, Agnes of God by John Pielmeier and Torch Song Trilogy by Harvey Fierstein.Waissman's first Broadway credit was the 1971 Paul Zindel play And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little with Estelle Parsons and Julie Harris, and his prolific Broadway efforts have resulted in four motion picture features, a PBS TV special, 25 Tony Award® nominations, and 5 Tony Awards® including a Tony Award® as ‘Best Play Producer.’ His new musical, Josephine, inspired by Josephine Baker, had its World Premiere in April at the Asolo Theatre in Sarasota, Florida. Deborah Cox played the title role and Joey McKneely directed and choreographed.
was the Lead Producer for Moolah, a new comedy by Arje Shaw (The Gathering). Currently he is helping develop three new works: Taking Leave, American Soldier and Roof of the World. Frank has also had the great privilege of working on a number of shows and projects with the late director Tom O’Horgan (Jesus Christ Superstar, Hair). In addition, he has worked on over twenty musicals and was involved for thirty years on the Tony Awards. Also involved in the music and entertainment industry, Frank has worked with luminaries as Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, conducted the Count Basie Orchestra, and the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra and consulted on nine Super Bowl half-time shows. Mr. Zuback founded Frank Zuback Productions, which provides a wide range of services in the music and entertainment industry. Website - http://fzpi.com