2011 Writers

Here’s what the 2011 Alumni writers have to say about their week at the Rhinebeck Writers Retreat:

Alex Timbers and Michael Friedman, Love’s Labour’s Lost

“Rhinebeck Writers Retreat was invaluable to the development of our new musical. The time spent upstate afforded us the opportunity to write, edit, collaborate, and delve deeper into the work – in a gorgeous, relaxing environment.”

Itamar Moses and Gaby Alter, Nobody Loves You

“Our musical is at a very advanced stage of development—about five years now, and about to have its first production. It can be easy to assume that rewrites will be faster at this stage. What we learned at Rhinebeck is that, if anything, rewrites at this stage require even more intense focus. The retreat provided us with the perfect environment to do just that, by eliminating distractions, providing us with a comfortable house to work and collaborate, groceries and a beautiful natural setting away from the city and our other projects.”

Brendan Milburn, Valerie Vigoda, and Gene Lewin, Wheelhouse

“The Rhinebeck Writers Retreat was an incredible gift – it allowed us to take our 17 songs and an outline, and turn it into a finished 70-page draft of Wheelhouse in one week. The retreat is a perfect storm of opportunity, isolation, sharpened pencils, index cards, coffee, snacks, beautiful surroundings, and focused time together as a writing team with a clear deadline. Hallelujah!”

Fred Carl and Ed DuRante, A Clockwork Orange

“The house felt isolated and secluded enough to provide for the quiet that we needed to get lots of concentrated work accomplished. Being able to hear the birds—we saw hummingbirds every evening—and to see the stars at night was wonderful. Everything worked to provide the quiet seclusion that we needed to concentrate on writing. We were able to develop character arcs, reconfigure the ending of our show, rewrite 3 songs and write 3 new ones.”

Andrew Gerle, Gloryana

“Rhinebeck Writers Retreat came at a crucial time in the development of my musical, as we were just about to head into a series of readings. It was an invaluable opportunity to have some dedicated, uninterrupted time with my collaborators to hash out structural issues that can be tough to pin down. That time was a luxury one never has in “real life,” and helped us create a strong dramaturgical foundation for the show that we could build upon when we saw it on its feet.”

Jacob Yandura and Rebekah Melocik, The Disillusionist

“This is an organization that loves writers and sincerely wants to help them. Everything was provided: a fully-stocked house, food, keyboard, transportation. The writers pay nothing out of pocket; instead, we were given a stipend, a gesture of extreme generosity. A reception was given at the end of the week, where we showcased our music to people in the industry, who could help us in the future. That is the essence of this retreat: support and encouragement, and that is what makes it so special. Musical theatre writers have found a champion in the Rhinebeck Writers Retreat.”

Janet Allard and Niko Tsakalakos, Pool Boy

“The Rhinebeck Writers retreat gave us the intensive time we needed to make some major breakthroughs in the writing of our musical. Because of Rhinebeck, our show has a new direction and a new life ahead of it. It’s often easier to find an opportunity to develop a new idea than to revisit a show that’s already had a production. I’m grateful that Rhinebeck supports not only brand new first-shots, but also shows that have had a production and need a place where the writers can continue development. Rhinebeck saved our musical.”