By Heidi Masek firstname.lastname@example.org
• Gay Bride in the Big Apple: Locally made Gay Bride of Frankenstein takes the stage in Manhattan in September. Billy Butler and Dane Leeman staged a workshop of their “comic book rock musical” at the Players’ Ring in Portsmouth last fall. Butler has said it’s a nod to Mary Shelley’s original Frankenstein novel, Scooby Doo, Plan 9 From Outer Space, The Rocky Horror Show and comic books.
Leeman is currently technical director and scenic designer at the Barnstormers Theatre in Tamworth. Equity actor Butler had been known for acting and directing around New Hampshire (he received an Excellence in American Theatre award from the New England Theatre Council in 2007) but he now lives in New York.
Their creation (more Granite Staters are involved) will be part of the New York Musical Theatre Festival, which showcases 30 new musicals over three weeks this fall.
More than 40 shows launched at NYMF since its 2004 start have moved on to Broadway, off-Broadway, regional, international and touring productions, according to www.nymf.org.
Gay Bride’s makers sent an e-mail to supporters in July, hoping to raise $5,000 by Sept. 28 through donations. That’s a “fraction” of their festival production costs but if they raise at least that, they’ll “make budget,” Butler wrote in an e-mail to the Hippo.
If you want to help, you can do so tax-free via a “Donation to a specific production” drop-down menu at www.nymf.org/donate.html. Or buy a copy of their Gay Bride workshop cast recording to help the cause.
Learn more and listen to the music at www.gaybrideoffrankenstein.com. Gay Bride of Frankenstein runs six times between Sept. 28 and Oct. 11 at TBG Theatre 312 W. 36th St. in New York.
• Not so far: Get your new theater fix in Hanover, where the New York Theatre Workshop is doing a three-week residency at Dartmouth College. Public performances of four pieces are scheduled at 5 and 8 p.m. Saturdays through Aug. 22. Tickets cost $10 ($6 for students) to see these works in progress. The details are at hop.dartmouth.edu or call 646-2422.
• Wild and an untamed thing: Among other things Butler was known for, he performed in The Rocky Horror Show at the Seacoast Repertory Theatre in Portsmouth for at least 10 years. There are still a few weekends left to catch the current cast in this longtime Rep summer tradition. The Rocky Horror Show runs at midnight Fridays and Saturdays through Aug. 22 at 125 Bow St. in Portsmouth (www.seacoastrep.org, 433-4472, $20).
• NYMF graduate: One of the new musicals that left NYMF to enjoy off-Broadway success is Altar Boyz. The five locals who played members of a Christian boy band in a June Stagecoach Productions performance are back for a “Second Coming” Friday, Aug. 21, and Saturday, Aug. 22, at 8 p.m., at the Derryfield School, 2108 River Road in Manchester. Tickets cost $18 at www.etix.com. StageCoach’s first non-musical runs that weekend as well — Agatha Christie’s Mousetrap, at 25 Front St., Suite 501, in Nashua. Visit stagecoachproductions.org or call 320-3780 for details.
• Ripped from the headlines: Catch tabloid-inspired musical Bat Boy Friday, Aug. 14, and Saturday, Aug. 15, at 7:30 p.m., at the Derryfield School. Timothy L’Ecuyer directs both Altar Boyz and Bat Boy, but the latter is a production of the Derryfield Repertory Theatre, “a company of young performers with professional aspirations.” It includes some Derryfield alumni and staff from the summer theater camp which started at Derryfield (an independent day school with an awfully nice campus) a few years ago. Tickets cost $15 at www.etix.com (derryfieldrep.org, 669-4524 ext. 4103).
• Still more: RB Productions presents Little Shop of Horrors Thursday, Aug. 13, through Saturday, Aug. 15, at 7 p.m., at the Concord City Auditorium, 2 Prince St. (rb-productions.com, 225-7779). Ticket costs range from $15 to $18.
Actors’ Circle Theatre closes its “Shakespeare in the Park” production of The Taming of the Shrew with performances Saturday, Aug. 15, and Sunday, Aug. 16, at 6 p.m., in Depot Square Park in Peterborough (924-3876, www.actorscircletheatre.org). Admission is free but donations are accepted. Order in advance for a $10 picnic dinner from Aesop’s Table (call 924-1612 by 3 p.m. Aug. 14). Shrew’s rain location is the Peterborough Historical Society, 19 Grove St.