....where your heartbeat is all that you hear.
Twelve year-old Pipio hunts for his lost mother among the street-kids, gangs and drug-lords that rule Rio’s favelas – the toughest slums in the hottest place on Earth. The boy’s search for identity becomes a struggle for survival in this re-invention of Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist set in modern-day Brazil – a colorful, character-filled Carnaval tale presented by the Escola de Samba Foltando!
Approximate Running Time: 2:20; with intermission
Nicholas is thrilled to be in the new musical RIO! Credits include the Nation Tour of A Christmas Story the Musical (Flick), and Zombie Prom: Atomic Edition (Joey). Nicholas was also featured on the television series Sesame Street. Recently, Nicholas worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company/Matilda the Musical on adapting the English accent. Special thanks too his family, Nancy Carson, Jody Prusan, and Brad Ross for all of their love and support. Learn more about Nicholas at NicholasDanielOnline.com. Nicholas is a proud member of Actors Equity!
Theater: Leslie Lee & Charles Stauses’ Martin: A New American Musical – directed by Jeffrey Moss, Charleston Olio directed by -Ifa Bayeza, Lydia Diamond’s Harriet Jacobs - directed by Jessica Thebus (Kansas City Rep); Paula Vogel's Civil War Christmas—directed by Jessica Thebus (Huntington Theatre); Esther Armahs Forgive Me—directed by Trazana Berverly (Mid-Town International Theatre Festival); TopDog/UnderDog—directed by George C. Wolf (Seattle Repertory Theatre, Circle Theatre Group); Miss Evers Boys (National Black Theatre Festival, The Complex Theater); Malcolm X (Tour); Live From Death Row…The Scottsboro Boys (Fountain Theatre); DWB in Beverly Hills—directed by Lynne Hamilton (Matrix Theatre). Film & TV: Dreamgirls—directed by Bill Condon, Rain, A Long Night, Children of the Struggle, Raising the Heights, Night Falls on Manhattan—directed by Sidney Lumet, Mercy, ER, The O.C., Cold Case, Shark, CSI: Miami, The Shield. Numerous TV & radio on-camera and voice-overs commercials. Education: BFA from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Awards: NACCP Theatre Award—three nominations, COLSAC Best Actor in Lead Role Award, Drama Critic Award, L.A. Weekly Award. www.gilbertglennbrown.com
Jose Candelaria is an actor, singer/songwriter, and alumnus of the University of Miami. Last seen in the world premier of Angel of the Amazon: A New American Opera at the Baryshnikov Arts Center. Credits Include THEATER: Jesus Christ Superstar, The Hidden Sky, Kingdom, The Who’s Tommy. TV/FILM: The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, Bored to Death, American Idol 7, and I Am A Fat Cat. Thanks to everyone at HTA and to my family, friends and fans for all of your support.
Nina is thrilled to be part of this exciting show! Off-Broadway/NYC: Jesus Christ Superstar “Soul Singer” (Lee Strasberg Theater), Christmas Rappings “Mary” (Theater at Judson), Atonement (Original Cast & Recording, The Actor’s Temple). Regional: Miss Saigon “Mimi, Gigi u/s” (Walnut Street Theatre, Houston TUTS), The King and I “Ballet Corps, Tuptim u/s” (Walnut Street Theatre), M. Butterfly “Suzuki” (Forestburgh Playhouse). Graduate of NYU Tisch, CAP21. She thanks her new husband, Michael, and their beautiful family.
LELUND DUROND (Ferreira) OFF-BROADWAY: The Glass Menagerie, Kumble Theater; A Raisin in the Salad, NYC Fringe Festival; Henry V, Ain’t Supposed to Die a Natural Death, Emancipation, Classical Theatre of Harlem; The Doll Confessions (LDTG), Urban Stages; Dreamgirls, Kumble Theater. INTERNATIONAL: Sweet Sweetback’s Badass Song: A Hood Opera, Sons d’Hiver Festival, Paris. REGIONAL: Blue Door, PlayMakers Repertory Company; …and L.A. is Burning, Florida Studio Theatre; Bloody Blackbeard, Triad Stage; A Christmas Carol, Actors Theater of Louisville & Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park; Well, A Streetcar Named Desire, The Cleveland Play House. Mr. Durond holds his MFA in acting from the CASE/Cleveland Play House Professional Actor Training Program.
Kelechi Ezie is an actress, singer, and writer from Buffalo, New York, thrilled to maker her NYMF debut in RIO as King Momo. Kelechi’s short film The Truth About Beauty and Blogs was just an official selection of Roger Ebert's Film Festival. Other select credits include These Seven Sicknesses at The Flea Theater and Daniel Beaty’s Tearing Down The Walls. Kelechi is graduate of Princeton University, where she earned a degree in History/Theatre & Dance.
Dennis Kenney is grateful to be a part of RIO! Credits include The Pantages Theater’s Production of How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Buzz Who, Grinch Understudy) The role of Eddie in the Las Vegas Company of Mamma Mia! Mame at the Kennedy Center starring Christine Baranski and Harriet Harris as well as the First National Broadway revival tour of 42nd St. TV roles include Alex Rodriguez in a musical on Comedy Central’s The Onion Sportsdome as well as appearances on The Young and the Restless, Nip Tuck and the CBS Diversity Comedy Showcase. He holds a B.F.A in Drama from Carnegie Mellon University.
Tanesha Ross (Neves) is thrilled to be making her NYMF debut!! Broadway and National Tour: HAIR; 5th Avenue Theatre: Pippin, Rocky Horror, HAIR; Village Theatre: Saint Heaven (Seattle Times Footlight Award), Chasing Nicolette, Aida, Evita; Westchester Broadway Theatre: Rent. Thanks to Jason Najjoum, the creative team of Rio, and my loving and supportive family and friends. Se podes olhar, ve. Se podes ver, repara. www.taneshaross.com.
Mercedes Ruiz is delighted to be making her NYMF debut. She has appeared on stage in Stockholm Brooklyn at the Cherry Lane Theater, on film and in several commercials. Her hobbies include singing and dancing. She hopes to fulfill her dream of becoming a professional singer. A recent graduate of the vocal program at talent Unlimited High School, Mercedes will be attending Adelphi University in the fall with plans to pursue a degree in Sociology.
J. Manuel Santos is honored to be a part of this fantastic new musical! His New York credits include Applause with City Center's Encores! Series and the revival of West Side Story (original cast; Bernardo u/s), where he had the privilege of taking over as Chino for the last 6 months of the production. His Television credit is Smash (known as Manuel)! Thanks to Mom, Jerry and John for the love and support.
Zurin Villanueva hails originally from the great NYC! Regional credits: Ain't Misbehavin; Crossroads, Crowns; Arena stage and The Stephen Schwartz Project; metro stage. Nobody's Perfect; The Kennedy Center (national tour). Most recently played Josephine Baker in an original musical written about her early life directed by Maurice Hines. Education: Howard University BFA Laguardia High School of the performing arts and Dance Theatre of Harlem. All my love to the Walkers and Villanuevas for their relentless support. Avid D.I.V.As!
Nik Walker (Samson) is honored to join up with RIO! Street cred includes Into the Woods (Centerstage/Westport Country Playhouse, dir. Mark Lamos), Miss Saigon (Ogunquit Playhouse, IRNE Nominee for Best Supporting Actor) RENT (Pioneer Theater) and Topdog/Underdog (Stella Adler Studio of Acting). Love to God, Mom, all fam/friends, The Mine Talent Agency and Ridley Scott, Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender and Idris Elba for bringing the heat to the summer movie season with Prometheus.
Mitch Magonet is a self-taught musician based in Montreal. With a degree in Industrial Relations from McGill University, Mitch became a composer, producer, lyricist and author whose credits include Disney’s “High School Musical – Sing It”, “Cirque du Soleil”, “Queer as Folk”, Disney's "Tarzan – the video game”, Ubisoft's "Speed Devils" and “CBC Curling”. Fascinated by the intricate rhythms, music and characters of Rio, Mitch began an eight year journey of discovery about this violent, yet beautiful city. After learning about the tragedy of the 'Candelaria Massacre' where many homeless street-kids were brutally murdered at the church by the police, Mitch, and his collaborator Joey Miller felt that there was an important story to be told. Within six months, they composed a crop of exhilerating songs that explored this fragile and powerful world. Workshopped at Mirvish Productions in Toronto and Catholic University in Washington, 'RIO' is ready to move from the Sambadrome to the stage.
Joey Miller has studied Musical Theatre in Toronto and New York as a member of Lehman Engel's B.M.I. Theater Writer's Workshops. The musical "That Scatterbrain Booky" (Y.P.T.) for which he wrote book, music and lyrics won the 1991 Dora Award for Outstanding New Musical. Other musicals he has collaborated on are: "Outrageous" (w/Brad Fraser) - CanStage - 2000 Dora nomination, "The Growing Season" & "….the Mummy's Revenge" (w/James Saar), "Eight To The Bar" and "Flying" (w/Stephen Witkin - Caesar's Palace Atlantic City), "Prince And The Pauper" - (w/Leslie Arden) - Winner of a 1989 Dora Award for Outstanding New Production - National Arts Centre Ottawa, "A Gift To Last - The musical" and "War Brides" (both with Grahame Woods), "Joy" (w/Maja Ardal - Workman Arts) and "Capone" and "The Boys" (w/Frank Peppiatt) and "Never Trouble Trouble" (w/Michael Miller)- Dora Nomination. He has also written for t.v., recordings, industrials and film.
Scott Faris has directed "Chicago, The Musical", in sixteen countries around the world in over a dozen languages plus tours in the US and the UK. He directed Bette Midler’s latest show, "The Showgirl Must Go On", at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas and "Walking With Dinosaurs", The Arena Spectacular, on tour in the US and the UK. Scott most recently directed William Shatner on Broadway in his one man show "Shatner's World - We Just Live In It". He started his career as an actor performing in musicals, among them "A Chorus Line". He learned his directing skills by working as a production stage manager for some of the top directors on Broadway on several Tony Award winning productions. Also in Las Vegas, he directed “EFX!” starring Michael Crawford and was part of the production team that created the amazing Siegfried & Roy at the Mirage. He directed the national tour of "Sweet Charity" starring Molly Ringwald and later, of "Trading Spaces" fame.
Pinny Gniwisch is one of the founders of ICE.com as well as a guru of Internet marketing. He frequently lectures worldwide at International Internet conferences on a myriad of topics relating to Internet marketing. Additionally, he is the youngest board member at Shop.org, and an adjunct professor at McGill University, as well as Rutgers Center for Leadership Development. Pinny is now trying his hand in the theatre world through the exciting production of "RIO" the musical.
Charity Wicks, a frequent music director and pianist for new works, was recently traveling the country with the National Tour with “Billy Elliot” as a conductor/keyboard player, and was the conductor/keyboard player for “Spring Awakening” on Broadway, as well as the Associate Music Director for the First National Tour. She’s played for “Wicked” and “In The Heights”, and frequently music directs final projects for NYU’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing program. Charity recently was the music director a new opera with the Polish roots band, the Warsaw Village Band in Vancouver, BC, and was the associate conductor of the world premier of Stephen Schwartz's opera, Séance on a Wet Afternoon. Charity holds B.M. and M.M. degrees from Temple University and D.M.A from The Manhattan School of Music.
Kate Dunn has honed her expertise through impressive experience in various mediums including the following. Dance: Royal Ballet Company, Sydney Dance Company, Chunky Move, Bangarra Dance Theatre. Musicals: "Contact", "On Your Toes" and "Chicago". Films: "The Phantom of the Opera", "Beyond the Sea". Associate choreographer: "Dirty Dancing", "Billy Elliot".
Currently Jack is a Creative Consultant on three Broadway musicals in development. Most recently Jack was Play Development Director at the Old Globe where he worked closely with the executive producer, Lou Spisto in planning the Globe's seasons. Among the productions were Matthew Lopez' "The Whipping Man", Duncan Sheik’s "Whisper House", Leslie Bricusse’s "Sammy" and the Broadway bound musicals "The First Wives Club" and "Robin and the 7 Hoods". Prior to that, Jack was the Creative Director for the National Arts Management Company. During NY at that time he was involved in the productions of "Chicago", "Annie Get Your Gun", "Seussical", "Wonderful Town", "Sweet Charity" and "This is Our Youth" from the initial development phases through to opening nights. Jack started out in casting and was the casting associate for the feature films "Nighthawks", "King of Comedy", "Author! Author!", "Yentl", "Once Upon a Time in America" and "The Last Temptation of Christ".
JASON WEIXELMAN (Production Stage Manager) NYMF Debut! Tours: The Berenstein Bears in Family Matters the Musical. New York Credits: Princes of Waco, For Elise, In Memory of Julie Simmons (Ensemble Studio Theatre); Suites by Sondheim (Lincoln Center). Regional Credits: Talley's Folly, God of Carnage, Boston Marriage (Hudson Stage Company); The Book of Liz (Seaside Repertory Theatre); Barber of Seville, Lucio Silla (Santa Fe Opera). My love and gratitude to my family, friends, and Staci Jo. Proud member of Actors Equity.
Eve is excited to be working on her 5th NYMF season. Previous NYMF credits include "Jerusalem Syndrome", "Judas and Me", "Nighttime Traffic", "Outlaws", "My History of Marriage", and "Tut". She is also the General Manager of NYMF shows "Trouble", "RIO", and an Associate on "Arnie the Doughnut". Current projects include "Unplugged In" at Theatre Row, "Scheme of the Super Bulies", and the Off-Broadway production of "Bronte".
Jason is originally from northern Virginia. A proud graduate of Emory University, Jason now makes New York City his home. Recent casting credits include "Myths & Hymns" (Prospect), "Dancing at Lunacy", "Blood", and "Bad Evidence" (the cell), "A Midsummer Night’s Dream" (The Hive), and numerous readings for Prospect Theater Company, New York Theatre Barn, The Hive, and The Pack. Commercially, Jason has worked at Donna DeSeta Casting, Godlove + Company, Background Inc, Foreground Inc, Strickman-Ripps Casting, and Broadcasters on numerous on-camera commercials, webseries, print campaigns, and other on-camera projects, from Kiefer Sutherland’s webseries "The Confession" to a commercial for Ford Explorer and a promo for the Oprah Winfrey Network. When not casting, Jason is the Creative Development Associate and an Executive Producer of NYTB in the D-Lounge for New York Theatre Barn, and is a new member of the New York Musical Theater Festival’s Reading Committee and Packawallop Productions’ artists collective, The Pack, and is a proud member of The Hive Theater Company. Recent producing credits include "I Married Wyatt Earp" (Prospect Theater Co./NY Theatre Barn), "Dancing at Lunacy", "Blood" (the cell), "Bandage: A Fight Play" (The Brick), "Male Matriarch" (FringeNYC), "Another Place" (The Anthropologists at HERE), "A Midsummer Night’s Dream" (The Hive), and "Bad Evidence" (the cell). Jason was an assistant to lead producer Ken Davenport on the Broadway revival of "Godspell".
Colin McGurk is a scenic designer and visual artist in New York City. He is chiefly focused on a visionary approach to art and design, and is equally fascinated by both the golden ratio and Discordianism. He received his MFA from UC San Diego. Credits include "Joe Turner's Come and Gone", "The Seagull", and "The House of Bernarda Alba". Colin received his BA in Theatre from Lehigh University in 2006 and returned as a design apprentice in 2007. He has exhibited his fine art in the US and Italy, and his scenic design for "The House of Bernarda Alba" was exhibited at the Prague Quadrennial 2011, an international scenogrophy conference.
David Kaley (Costume Designer) is thrilled to be back at NYMF! Recent designs include Little Shop of Horrors (Olney), Silence! The Musical (PS122), Yeast Nation (NY Fringe Festival), Hello Out There (Adirondack Theatre Festival) NEWSical (Kirk), Hairspray (Charlottetown Theatre Festival), Trails (NYMF). Associate design credits include: The Addams Family, La Cage aux Folles, The Normal Heart (Broadway) and Dreamgirls (Korea), Ragtime (Kennedy Center), Disney’s High School Musical (US, UK, Spain). David is a graduate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts.
Nubia Quele Santos is a dancer/ choreographer, actress and philanthropist born in Minas Gerias, Brazil and raised in Sydney, Australia. She has a Bachelor of Nursing from the University of Technology, Sydney and completed an acting conservatory program in New York. She has over 15 years professional experience in traditional dance styles and world dance styles including Bollywood, Brazilian Samba and Afro-Brazilian. Her accomplishments include being a member of ‘Le Ballet Rock Tour’ and performing in some of Australia’s main entertainment venues. She was a lead dancer and choreographer for Australian’s premier Brazilian dance group ‘Rhythm Brazil’. She was also Top 40 on So You Think You Can Dance (Australia).
Steven Rowe is a recent MFA stage management graduate from Columbia University. He received his undergraduate degree in Theater and Psychology from Pepperdine University in Malibu. At Columbia he’s stage managed several student productions, collaborating often with playwright/director Simone Marie Martelle. He has worked as a PA on Sister Act as well as a workshop of Rocky: The Musical in Brooklyn. Most recently he was the ASM for Daniel Beaty's new show Mr. Joy at The Riverside Theater.
Zach is very excited to be involved in his first NYMF production. He is currently studying marketing, public relations and production management at Fordham College Lincoln Center. Zach works as an assistant with Alloy Theater Company and their ongoing production of Bronte starring Maxine Linehan. He has also managed Grupo Corpo, the Brazilian Capohuera dance team from Brazil as part of Lincoln Center Summer Festival. Thanks to Eve Rybnick for this opportunity.
Niko Stamos is currently a theatre major at James Madison University. He is excited to be apart of this production and work on his first show in New York City. Along with working behind the scenes Niko is both an actor and singer. Thanks to my family for the support over the years and to everyone in the production for being so welcoming.
1. My Carnaval
2. The World Doesn't Dance Until You Do
3. House of Tin
4. Touch and Go
5. Rio's Attic
6. A Lady