February 25, 2022

Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda praises MSM Musical Theatre students after their sold-out performance of the new musical Don’t Stop Me

“You killed it,” Lin-Manuel Miranda told MSM Musical Theatre students after seeing Don’t Stop Me at The Riverside Theatre.

MSM’s production of the new musical, Don’t Stop Me, which enjoyed four sold-out performances between February 17 to 20 and generated significant buzz in NYC, was attended by many of the musical theatre community’s leading lights. Among them were the show’s Tony-nominated composer/co-lyricist Dave Malloy, book writer/co-lyricist Krista Knight, and none other than composer and actor Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote the book, music, and lyrics as well as starred in Hamilton. The three spoke with MSM student cast members following one of the performances.

Miranda, who in addition to being a Pulitzer Prize-winning composer/lyricist and celebrated actor is now a successful film director (tick, tick…BOOM!), told students how much he enjoyed the production. The two-time Oscar nominee and multiple winner of Tony, Emmy, and Grammy Awards, said he was most impressed by the cast’s commitment to the piece, how they made it shine, and how they were able to keep the energy level so high while wearing masks.

MSM Musical Theatre student Alesha Jeter (BM ’23) poses with Lin-Manuel Miranda 

The production of Don’t Stop Me, with music by Dave Malloy (Tony Award-nominee for NatashaPierre & the Great Comet of 1812) and lyrics by Malloy and Krista Knight (Sloppy BonnieCRUSH) was directed and choreographed by Chloe Treat (Der Freischütz with Heartbeat Opera), co-choreographed by Mayte Natalio, with music direction by Dan Garmon, and took place at the Riverside Church Theatre a block away from Manhattan School of Music.

SLIDE SHOW: Don't Stop Me

The plot of the exuberant, colorful, and energetic musical is described this way: “The stakes are high at Plain Springs High’s first ever dance-a-thon. As a demonic DJ transports contestants to dance crazes from throughout history, each participant must face their deepest desires and greatest weaknesses. Only one couple will walk out with ‘The Prize.’ The rest won’t make it out alive.”

Composer/lyricist Dave Malloy (on left) with MSM Musical Theatre student Jacob Dueker (BM '23)

MSM Musical Theatre senior Pantelis Karastamatis (BM '22) (on left) posing with Lin-Manuel Miranda

Lin-Manuel enthusing to MSM Musical Theatre students following a performance of Don't Stop Me

The production featured lighting design by Bailey Costa, scenic design by Meredith Ries, sound design by Scott Stauffer, costume design by Fan Zhang, and was stage managed by Olivia Mancini.

The cast of Don't Stop Me with director Chloe Treat, and creators Dave Malloy and Krista Knight

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