Interview with Donna McKechnie.

Donna McKechnie In ICON! 1Donna McKechnie In ICON!Tony Award-Winner
Donna McKechnie



Tony Award & Olivier Award-Nominee
Tony Sheldon



A New Musical Presented by the New York Musical Festival


Book by Sebastian Michael
Music and Lyrics by Jonathan Kaldor
Directed and Choreographed by Paul Stancato


July 20-26, 2016 (5 Performances)
Wednesday, July 20, 2016, at 8:00 pm
Saturday, July 23, 2016, at 1:00 pm
Saturday, July 23, 2016, at 5:00 pm
Sunday, July 24, 2016, at 9:00 pm
Tuesday, July 26, 2016, at 4:00 pm


The Duke on 42nd Street – a NEW 42ND STREET® Project
229 West 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036

Tickets: $27.50. For tickets:

Runtime: Two Hours, which includes one 15-minute intermission

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(New York – June 23, 2016) – Tony Award-winner Donna McKechnie (A Chorus Line) and Tony & Olivier Award-Nominee Tony Sheldon (Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) will star in The New York Musical Festival’s (NYMF) upcoming production of ICON, a romantic new musical with book by Sebastian Michael and music & lyrics by Jonathan Kaldor.  Paul Stancato directs and choreographs a cast of 14, which also includes Patrick Connaghan*, Chase Crandell*, Chloe Holgate*, Charlotte Maltby*, Ben McHugh*, Kalia Medeiros*, Erika Peterson, Chris Ramirez*, and Sam Simahk*, with more to be announced shortly.  With a seven-piece orchestra, ICON is being staged at The Duke on 42nd Street – a NEW 42ND STREET® Project, 229 West 42nd Street (bet. 7th and 8th Aves.) in NYC for five performances from Wednesday, July 20 through Tuesday, July 26, 2016.  *Member, Actors’ Equity Association.


1928. The world is enthralled as American debutante, Constance Nielsen, marries into one of Europe’s ancient Royal Families. But when an impassioned affair with her music teacher sparks an uproar, news of her tragic death turns her from living legend into timeless icon. 40 years later, a young man in search of his grandfather’s past finds more than he’s bargained for.  The Princess. Her lover. And a story that could not be told.


A previous production of ICON (starring Susannah York) was presented at Her Majesty’s Theatre, London, as part of The Works Series of New Musicals, and then went on to a full production at the Landor Theatre.


ICON is an Official Selection of the 2016 New York Musical Festival. Executive Producer/General Manager: Simpson & Longthorne Theatricals; Music Director: Jesse Warkentin; Lighting Designer: Isabella Byrd; Costume Designer: Liene Dobraja; Media Designer: Kevan Loney; Casting Director: Michael Cassara, CSA; Production Stage Manager: Lily Perlmutter; Assistant Stage Manager: Hai Alvarez-Millard;Production Assistants: Samantha Gibbs & Sara Stevens; Publicist: Paul Siebold/Off Off PR.


ICON plays for five performances on the following schedule: Wednesday, July 20, 2016 at 8:00 pm; Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 1:00 pm; Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 5:00 pm; Sunday, July 24, 2016 at 9:00 pm; and Tuesday, July 26, 2016 at 4:00 pm.


Tickets are $27.50 and can be purchased online at or by calling 212-352-3101. For more information, please visit


The runtime for ICON is two hours, which includes one 15-minute intermission.


Sebastian Michael (book) has written several stage plays, among them The Power of Love, Love Hurts and Time After Time, which together now form the Love Trilogy, and each of which individually reached the shortlist, long list and final ten respectively of the Verity Bargate Award (UK) in separate years. His plays Elder Latimer is in Love and Top Story were staged in London at Arcola Theatre and The Old Vic Tunnels, and his latest play, Baur au Lac, is currently in development with Park Theatre London. Other plays of Sebastian’s have been performed on the London and Edinburgh Fringe. Sebastian has written and directed two short films, and his debut feature, “The Hour of Love,” was nominated for the Basel Film Prize (Switzerland) in 2012, with festival screenings in New York, Italy and Australia. Sebastian has also written a novel, Angel, and most recently became a contributing author to A Quantum City(Eds. Hovestadt/Bühlmann, ETH Zürich; Birkhäuser, 2015). His current experimental online project is EDEN by FREI – ‘a concept narrative in the here & now about the where, the wherefore and forever.’ ICON is Sebastian’s second musical collaboration, following Monstersound, for which he wrote the book and lyrics, with music by David Klein, Nicky Reiss and Olivier Truan. @optimistlondon


Jonathan Kaldor (music & lyrics) -As composer-lyricist, Jonathan’s first two musicals were funded by The Arts Council of England. His lavish fantasy, for Professor Utopia, was staged at the London Palladium at the Vivian Ellis Gala and won the Mercury Development Prize. Jonathan’s scores for Oscar Wilde’sThe Selfish Giant arthDances were published as audio books for Happy Feet Stories, and his collection of orchestral pieces, including Parade of the Inanimate Objects, has been widely used for television in Germany, Austria, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Israel, Taiwan and South Africa. Originally trained as baritone, Jonathan most recently sang with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra in the new recording of Yves Dessca’s The Count of Monte Cristo, playing Faria, a role he then sang in the subsequent staging at the Ricardo Montalban Theatre in Hollywood.


Paul Stancato (director & choreographer) is a creative show director and choreographer who works in theatre, film and television. He recently directed and choreographed the 2015-’16 National Tour of Flashdance the Musical, as well as the world premiere of The Cobalteans- which earned 7 Nominations for the 2015 New York Musical Theater Festival including Best Direction.  He directed and choreographed the 2014-’15 National Tour of Jekyll and Hyde. From 2012-2014, Stancato served as the Artistic Director for Franco Dragone’s, The House of Dancing Water in Macau, China.  He was the Resident Director for the National Tour of Disney’s The Lion King, 2006 -2010 (2008 Helen Hayes nomination for Best Touring Musical). He directed the First National Tour ofThe Wedding Singer and was also Assistant Choreographer for the Broadway production (Tony nomination for Best Musical and Best Choreography).Select  Directing/choreographing credits include: Long Days Journey Into Night (Palm Beach Drama Works, FL), Powerhouse (Sinking Ship Productions, NYC), Plaid Tidings (Flatrock Playhouse), Hairspray and Sound of Music (John W. Engeman Theater, NY), Trav’lin the Musical (NYMF Festival Best Ensemble Honorable Mention), Greenwood (NYMF starring Andrea McArdle), Crazy For You, Godspell, Guys and Dolls, Heart Rising (World Premier),Einstein’s Dreams (Best Direction Award New York Fringe Festival), Dystopia Gardens (NY Fringe Festival). He conceived and co-wrote ROCKSHOW, an interactive Performance piece which ran Off-Broadway. Performance credits include, Blue Man Group (Blue Man) and De La Guarda (original New York cast member/Captain). Awards/ Fellowships: Mike Okrent Fellow (nominee), Society of Directors Observer Fellow (award), University of Florida Outstanding Alumnus Award, Drama League member and a Lincoln Center Director’s Lab member. Paul is currently developing a new musical for Broadway based on the life and times of 80’s art star, Jean Michel Basquiat as well as brand new spectacle show for Universal Studios Beijing, which will premier in 2020.


About the theater: The Duke on 42nd Street

The Duke on 42nd Street is an intimate black-box performance space in the heart of the theater district, which is available for rental to both nonprofit and commercial organizations. Featuring a gallery along all four walls and a custom, state-of-the-art seating system, The Duke on 42nd Street is a fully-staffed facility that offers full light, sound, and support systems in various configurations. Some performing arts companies have called The Duke on 42nd Street their home, including Primary Stages, Transport Group, Theatre for a New Audience and Lincoln Center Theater LCT3, while other acclaimed companies have performed on its stage, including The Royal Court Theatre, Steppenwolf Theater Company, Armitage Gone! Dance, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Naked Angels, Classical Theater of Harlem and the National Theater of Great Britain.


The New York Musical Festival nurtures the creation, production, and public presentation of stylistically, thematically, and culturally diverse new musicals to ensure the future vitality of musical theater.

Now in its thirteenth year, the Festival is the premier musical theater event in the world. The preeminent site for launching new musicals and discovering new talent, the Festival provides an affordable platform for artists to mount professional productions that reach their peers, industry leaders, and musical theater fans. More than 90 Festival shows have gone on to productions on and Off-Broadway, in regional theaters in all 50 states, and in more than 24 countries worldwide. Festival alumni have received a wide array of awards including the Tony Award® and the Pulitzer Prize. In 2013, NYMF received a special Drama Desk Award in recognition of its work “creating and nurturing new musical theatre, ensuring the future of this essential art form.”

The 2016 New York Musical Festival will take place July 11 – August 7. For more information, please visit:


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