Made In China: The Last Entry

Nicky Weinbach concludes his chronicle of the first production of Made In China, his original musical.

As this is my last entry for this current guest blog, I’m going to make this brief. I want to thank everyone who came to see Made in China. It was a fantastic run. We sold out closing night. The audience was great and so was the cast. I’m so happy with how it all turned out. Though there may have been the rare detractor, it seems that, overall, people really enjoyed this show. One thing that remained pretty consistent was people’s reaction to the music: they all loved it. That was probably the most important part of this show for me, too. My primary goal for Made in China was that people would leave the show humming its tunes, and that happened a lot. As this musical grows and larger productions of it are produced, I hope that more and more of the world will be introduced to the music of Made in China. Nothing would make me happier than the rest of the world humming the songs that I wrote.

Thanks for continuing to catch up with this blog, and I hope to see you all at future productions of Made in China. Until next time, this has been Nicky Weinbach.

P.S. Don’t forget to catch my brother Max’s musical, A Match Made in Hell, premiering in August!

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Made In China: The Saga Continues

Nicholas Weinbach continues to chronicle his original musical’s progress towards its first production.

In my last addition to the Made in China guest blog, I talked about arriving at our first read-through with the cast. Well, a lot has changed since then. Due to scheduling conflicts, we’ve replaced our previous director with the very talented Nick Dickson in addition to changing up the cast a little bit. It can be very frustrating to lose multiple members of the team let alone one member, but you have to pick yourself up by the boot straps and push through. That’s definitely the job of a producer. You have to keep searching for talent until you’ve solidified a team that can fully commit to the production. We’ve done that and are excited to move forward.

Tomorrow, the pit orchestra will be having its first rehearsal together, headed by conductor Max Weinbach, my twin brother. Obviously, I’ll need to be at the rehearsal, too. I wrote the music and need to make sure everything sounds the way I intended. However, I’m very confident in brother’s ability to interpret my music appropriately. After all, he did conduct the orchestra for the staged readings / singings of Made in China, and that went very well. We even have more experienced musicians this time around. If I haven’t already mentioned before, the orchestra includes flute, two violins, cello, piano, and percussion. It’s a small ensemble so as not to overpower the relatively small cast, who will perform in a somewhat small space, but still big enough to provide a full and beautiful sound.

Actually, I had originally wrote the score with a harp included, but, when I was trying to find musicians for the staged readings, I had the most trouble finding a harpist who would work for minimal compensation. They’re not very cheap, and there aren’t many of them. In fact, every harpist I asked recommended one another, so I ended up contacting six or seven harpists who all knew each other. It’s a small circle. Lesson learned I suppose: when you’re starting out small, write parts for common instruments. Luckily, I was able to combine the harp and piano parts with moderate ease. Perhaps, a future production of Made in China will include harp. That would be cool and definitely play on the Harvey Schmidt (composer of The Fantasticks) influence.

I hope to have more news on the rehearsal process over the next few months. It’s definitely exciting, but thoughts about the whole production keep me up at night. I can’t stop thinking about this musical. When you’ve put so much work into something, you want it to do well. You want it to succeed. I hope the coming weeks will make me feel more confident about this production. For now, I’m just happy that everything is in motion. Until next time, I’ll see you at the movies. Nah, just kidding.