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Hot young musical theatre team performs in free concert at Mercyhurst

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

It will be a “Party Worth Crashing” on March 24 when lyricist Kait Kerrigan and composer Brian Lowdermilk join students at Mercyhurst University to present a cabaret performance of their songs.

The visit by the award-winning musical theater team concludes the 25th anniversary season of the Visiting Artists Series at Mercyhurst, this year renamed the Roche Visiting Artists Series. An endowment by the Terry and Margaret M. Roche Family now allows the series to offer unique musical events to the Erie community free of charge. The concert begins at 8 p.m. in the Walker Recital Hall in Mercyhurst’s Hirt Academic Center.

Vocal students from Mercyhurst’s D’Angelo Department of Music and some special guests will perform most of the songs, featuring milestones in the life of twenty-somethings. Pianist Ian Gayford, a Mercyhurst junior, will accompany the singers, including Mercyhurst students Sarah Creighton,

Devon Meddock, Katelyn Cecchetti and Bethany Sulecki, Mercyhurst Prep senior Katie Conti, and guests Adam Fladd and Tim Gilbert.

Kerrigan and Lowdermilk will join the cast on stage near the end of the concert to present a new song from one of their most recent musicals, not yet formally released. Kait will also be featured soloist for “Berkeley” and Brian and Kait will both have solos in the finale: the inspiring song “Holding On.”

Dr. Albert Glinsky, founder and director of the Visiting Artists Series, is the event producer, and Dr. Brett Johnson, director of Mercyhurst’s theatre program, will direct.

Following the concert, Kerrigan and Lowdermilk will greet fans at a reception in the Hirt Academic Center lobby.

On Tuesday afternoon, March 25, the duo will present an in-depth master class with the student singers. The session, in Taylor Little Theatre from 2 to 5 p.m., is also free and open to the public.

Kerrigan and Lowdermilk are arguably the hottest young team now composing for musical theatre. They made their off-Broadway debut in 2006 with their adaptation of Henry and Mudge, still touring nationally. In 2011, they released their first album Our First Mistake, which charted at #1 on the iTunes Singer/Songwriter chart. Their new album, Kerrigan-Lowdermilk Live, documents a concert tour that resulted from their breakout $35,000 kickstarter campaign.

Other musicals include The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown, Tales from the Bad Years, The Woman Upstairs, Wrong Number, The Freshman ExperimentRepublic and Flash of Time. 

Many of their musicals explore growing up in the modern world through the adventures and struggles of young people in their 20s. Their songs are regularly sung by Broadway and Hollywood stars, and are especially popular with musical theatre students from middle school through university.

Their Erie visit comes on the heels of their London debut in February, where they performed before sold-out crowds.

For more information, call 814-824-2394.