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Ghostlight Records and The Civilians have joined together to release The Michael Friedman Collection, a long-term project which will comprise the premiere recordings of nine musicals from the beloved late Obie Award-winning songwriter Michael Friedman.
The Abominables, which opened at Children’s Theater Company in Minneapolis in 2017, is a hilarious and satirical musical about the wildly high-stakes world of suburban youth hockey. Mitch has always played on the A team for the Prairie Lake Blizzards. They’ve played together forever, but he’s worried this could be the year he gets sent down to the B team. When a new kid, Harry, who happens to be a Yeti, appears at Bantam tryouts, Mitch’s world—along with his family—gets turned upside down, leading Mitch to undertake a series of progressively dastardly attempts to regain his place in the world.
The Abominables features John Behlmann, Audrey Bennett, Gerard Canonico, Daniel Jenkins, Mia Jenness, Alyse Alan Louis, Zell Murrow, Maria-Christina Oliveras, Brian Charles Rooney, and Johnny Shea, and an ensemble of Randy Blair, Jiho Kang, Sabina Petra, Sarah Beth Pfeifer, Curtis Reynolds, Sharone Sayegh, and Stephen Schapero. It is produced by Steve Cosson and Kurt Deutsch, and co-produced by Ian Kagey, Wiley DeWeese, Amy C. Ashton, and Greg Brunswick. Wiley DeWeese serves as Music Director.
“The Michael Friedman recording project has truly been the work of a community,” says Friedman’s collaborator Steve Cosson. “As we all continue to feel the deep pain of his loss, there is solace in our being able to preserve and share his music with generations to come. In spending time with his work, I’m reminded with each song how much of Michael’s singular self is present in his music. The fact that his voice is so clear and present even as he finds his way inside of so many different genres, subject matters, and characters is a testament to how fully open to the world he was. Michael could find a point of connection with anything and from that build a song, working as part-explorer, part-essayist and of course, composer. Because of that, listening to his work both takes us out into the world and offers a portal into Michael’s astonishing mind and his enormous capacity for empathy. How he lived is built into every thought and note of these songs, and I’m so glad that these recordings will add to his previously published works, offering others a chance to know his music, and through that, know Michael.”
“It’s been a little over two years since my friend and colleague Michael’s untimely death,” says label founder Kurt Deutsch. “The Civilians, Michael’s family and my label Ghostlight Records have all been working to preserve his legacy. It was my honor to work side by side in the studio with Michael to preserve Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, The Fortress of Solitude and others. Now his life’s work will continue to live on and inspire generations of musical theatre lovers to come.”
The Michael Friedman Collection is made possible by the generous donors to the Michael Friedman Legacy Fund and by the artistic contributions of his many collaborators.
- Track Listing
- I Am the Princess of Everything Else – Audrey Bennett
- Minnesota Nice – Daniel Jenkins, Alyse Alan Louis, Audrey Bennett, Johnny Shea, Mia Jenness, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- Perfect– Johnny Shea, Jiho Kang, Curtis Reynolds
- My Brother is a Yeti – Zell Murrow
- Happiness– John Behlmann, Maria-Christina Oliveras, Zell Murrow
- Yeti Prayer – Gerard Canonico, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- Hockey Rules – Mia Jenness
- The Curse of the Blizzards – Brian Charles Rooney, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- A Matter of Time (Part 1) – Daniel Jenkins, Alyse Alan Louis, Gerard Canonico, Audrey Bennett, Johnny Shea, Mia Jenness
- A Matter of Time (Part 2) – Gerard Canonico, Audrey Bennett, Johnny Shea
- We Will Kill You – Randy Blair, Jiho Kang, Stephen Schapero, Johnny Shea
- We Are All Yeti – The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- Crouching Harry Hidden Yeti – Gerard Canonico, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- I Used to Be Like You – Gerard Canonico, Johnny Shea, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- I Used to Be Like You (reprise) – Gerard Canonico, Johnny Shea
- We Are All Yeti: A Team Finals — Gerard Canonico, Johnny Shea, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- We Could Build an Igloo — Zell Murrow, Audrey Bennett
- The Final Game — Johnny Shea, John Behlmann, Maria-Christina Oliveras, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble
- Learn to Lose —Johnny Shea, Alyse Alan Louis, Daniel Jenkins, Mia Jenness, Audrey Bennett, Zell Murrow, John Behlmann, Maria-Christina Oliveras, The Abominables Original Cast Recording Ensemble