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    23 Composer/Lyricists Who Prove Why You Should Give Musical Theatre Another Shot

    For those who are not very familiar with the world of musical theatre, exposure to said realm doesn't usually wander beyond an occasional viewing of The Tony Awards every couple of years or the distant memory of that one, sort of famous ballad that caused their dad to fall asleep in his aisle seat when they saw the national tour of CATS as a kid. Contrary to what some people think, the genre of musical theatre is one that expands way beyond the lights of Broadway, and there's an entire community of contemporary composers and lyricists that remain relatively unknown to those who are not avid theatre enthusiasts. Sometimes branded under the sub-genres of "new musical theatre" and "musical theatre pop", these artists range from new, up-and-coming writers who were still in their undergrad a few years ago, to award-winning duos who've been on the theatre scene for years. The shows and song cycles written by these talents include both upbeat tunes and heartfelt ballads that are basically the love children of today's popular music and the Stephen Sondheim/Rogers and Hammerstein records in your grandparents' attic. Keep scrolling to discover for yourself how they demonstrate why it's actually pretty cool to burst into song when the feels get too intense to handle any other way. These aren't your grandmother's show tunes, kids!

    Adam Gwon

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    What he's known For: musicals and song cycles including Ordinary Days, The Boy Detective Fails, Cloudlands, Bernice Bobs Her Hair, and stand-alone songs such as "Away from Here" and "Running".

    Zoe Sarnak

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    What she's known for: musicals and live concert albums including A Lasting Impression, The Years Between, and the upcoming Mixtape.

    Kooman and Dimond

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    What they're known for: musicals including Homemade Fusion, Dani Girl, Golden Gate, The Noteworthy Life of Howard Barnes, and their album Our of Our Heads: The Music of Kooman and Dimond.

    Drew Gasparini

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    What he's known for: musicals Crazy, Just Like Me, Make Me Mad, #UntitledPopMusical, and album I Could Use a Drink: The Songs of Drew Gasparini

    Will Van Dyke

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    What he's known for: musicals Pages, The Magnificent Climb, album Chasing the Day: The Music of Will Van Dyke, collaboration work with Broadway actor, Matt Doyle, on his debut album, Constant, and songs "Halfway Down" and "Hip Hip Pooh-Ray" from Disney's Winnie the Pooh Kids.

    Scott Alan

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    What he's known for: Albums and song cycles such as Dreaming Wide Awake: The Music of Scott Alan, Keys: The Music of Scott Alan, Scott Alan Live, and various collaborations with Broadway stars such as Shoshana Bean, Stephanie J. Block and Cheyenne Jackson.

    Katie Thompson

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    What she's known for: albums What I've Done Right, KT Live, and Private Page, concert Christmas With a "K", in addition to various stage credits, both in NYC and regionally.

    Joey Contreras

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    What he's known for: Debut album Love Me, Love Me Not: The Music of Joey Contreras, and stand-alone songs such as "Great, Cool".

    Pasek and Paul

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    What they're known for: song cycles and musicals Edges, Dogfight, James and the Giant Peach, the Tony-Nominated A Christmas Story: The Musical, and featured songs on season two of NBC's Smash.

    Zack Zadek

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    What he's known for: 6: A New Musical and a pretty piano-tastic cover of Katy Perry's "Roar", which can be easily found on Youtube.

    Kerrigan-Lowdermilk

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    What they're known for: musicals such as The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown, Henry and Mudge, and albums Our First Mistake, Kerrigan-Lowdermilk LIVE, and Kerrigan-Lowdermilk LIVE Extras.

    Deborah Abramson

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    What she's known for: Stand-alone songs such as "Shadows and Light", "Liliana", "Waiting To Be Won" and work as music supervisor on Broadway shows such as Spring Awakening and Matilda.

    Carner and Gregor

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    What they're known for: musicals Island Song, Unlock’d, and The Great Cookie Quest (which is still in development).

    Joe Iconis

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    What he's known for: Musicals such as Bloodsong of Love, The Black Suits (with Robert Maddock), ReWrite, The Plant That Ate Dirty Socks, We The People, featured songs on Season 2 of NBC's Smash, and various concert work such as the Annual Joe Iconis Christmas Spectacular.

    Alexander Sage Oyen

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    What he's known for: musical, album, and concert work that includes Moment by Moment, Money$hot, Outlaws, and Immaculate Hearts.

    Creighton Irons

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    What he's known for: musicals and upcoming projects that include Factory Girls (with Sean Mahoney), Soul Notes, Homefront, and The Moon and the Sea, a band-centered musical.

    Michael Mott

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    What he's known for: compositions such as Mob Wife: A Musical Comedy, Faustus: The Musical, and his debut album, Where The Sky Ends: The Songs of Michael Mott.

    Sarah Rebell

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    What she's known for: Rose Petals: An Original, Victorian Musical (music by Lizzie Hagstedt) , and stand-alone songs such as "Control" (music by Will Buck), and "Erasers and Toys" (music by Willem Oosthuysen).

    Bobby Cronin

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    What he's known for: various musical, concert, and album work that includes The Concrete Jungle, A Christmas Carol, 'Til Death Do Us Part, Daybreak, and Welcome to My Life (W2ML).

    Jonathan Reid Gealt

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    What he's known for: album and concert work, including Thirteen Stories Down and Here for You: Ballads for Broadway Impact.

    Salzman and Cunningham

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    What they're known for: musicals I Love You Because, Next Thing You Know, and other composition work including songs such as "Here and Now".

    Ryan Scott Oliver

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    What he's known for: musicals such as Mrs. Sharp, Darling, Circle Nine, and ANGUS OBLONG’S THE DEBBIES: A Ten Minute Musical.

    Miller and Tysen

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    What they're known for: musicals that include Tuck Everlasting, Fugitive Songs, The Burnt Part, and The Mysteries Of.

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