The Festival.

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Two companies, three shows, three genres

Even a touch of Glee

All coming to The Loft August 5-7


The Human Race Festival of New Musicals has something for everyone this year – one show with the music of a legendary Broadway and ’50s pop composer, one with jazz, one that rocks.
LMTWGRBob Merrill created the music for such Broadway smashes as Funny Girl and Carnival, and chart-topping hits like “How Much Is That Doggie In The Window” and “If I knew You Were Coming I’d’ve Baked a Cake” even though he couldn’t read or write music. That’s right – Merrill composed by plunking out tunes on a toy xylophone. Plunking out Merrill’s tunes on a piano in Love Makes The World Go ‘Round will be musical arranger Brad Ellis. Ellis is famous for not talking as he accompanies the choir on the hit TV show Glee, but he’ll actually speak up in this show. Honest.

Play It Cool
Jazz buffs will love Play It Cool, a tale about five people at a 1953 Hollywood club called Mary’s Hideaway, where the music is smoky hot and the atmosphere is noir cool. It’s a chance to hear this story about the courage to break the rules before it heads off to its own big break, an off-Broadway opening this fall.

Pump Up Poster

Encore Theater Company, a local community theater dedicated to developing new musicals, joins the festival for the first time this year – with a rocking show based on a hit 1990 indy movie about a teen who started a pirate radio station in his parents’ basement. The film version of Pump Up the Volume, starring Christian Slater, won numerous awards, including the coveted – at least by those who didn’t win – Golden Space Needle Award as the most popular film at the Seattle International Film Festival.


These three terrific staged readings feature casts of local and major-city performers, including Human Race Resident Artists Deb Colvin-Tener, Jamie Cordes and Katie Pees.

The schedule, all at The Loft Theatre, is:

Friday, August 5 –

  • 7pm Play It Cool
  • 10pm Pump Up the Volume

Saturday, August 6 –

  • 2pm Play It Cool
  • 7pm Love Makes the World Go ‘Round
  •  Plus, you’ll have a chance to meet all the writers and composers in The Loft Lobby at noon on Saturday.

Sunday, August 7 –

  • 2pm Love Makes the World Go ‘Round
  • 7pm Pump Up the Volume

Advance tickets are $15 per performance, available through August 5 by visiting

Or by calling Ticket Center Stage at (937) 228-3630 or visiting the Schuster Center Box Office.

Day of show tickets at The Loft Box Office will be $20.


The Human Race Theatre Company

126 N. Main St., Suite 300
Dayton, OH 45419
(937) 461-3823


Encore Theater Company

400 East Fifth St., Suite A
Dayton, OH 45402
(937) 985-4382


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