Musical Development Initiative
Wild Horse Stage Co is proud to announce our new Musical Development Initiative. We believe in raising the voices of artists and empowering them to tell new stories. Through the Musical Development Initiative, we will invest in new projects for the stage, providing writers with actors and directors, time, space, and a safe environment to create.
We are thrilled to kick off this exciting new initiative with the talented writing team of Jen Coogan and Matt Coogan. Known locally for their performances in theatre productions, they are currently based in San Francisco, where they write, record, and perform musical theatre throughout the Bay Area. Stay tuned for more details about this pilot production!
THE LAST OPEN MIC
Writers: Jen Coogan & Matt Coogan
The Last Open Mic is a ninety minute immersive musical about a beloved neighborhood café and their monthly open mic night. The open mic is known for drawing in a crowd of local dreamers and artists, and over the course of the evening, we get a look at the unique personal stories of the performers. However, the one thing that has tied all these people together, the humble café, is now on the brink of extinction. As we watch the final evening of the open mic play out, the artists are even more driven to express themselves in the only way they know how; by making art.
Jen Coogan (she/her) is a composer/lyricist/ writer who started out as a performer, but began writing musicals in her desire to create more roles for women. Her short musical, The Morning After, was produced by Left Coast Theatre Company in San Francisco. She is also writing and developing the musicals Pharma Girls, The Last Open Mic, and The Oregon Trail Pages, as well as creating The Women in Theatre Project- a song cycle, featuring personal interviews and stories from some of the most influential women in theatre. Jen and her husband are cocreators of Broadway for the Boardroom, writing industrial musicals for corporate events. Her music has been featured in Vents Mag, Prelude Press, Idobi Music, Cliché Mag, and New Music Inferno, among others. Her songs have been shared on social media by Lin Manuel Miranda, and Broadway producers Ken Davenport and Jennifer Ashley Tepper. She is a proud member of The Dramatists Guild, ASCAP, and Theatre Bay Area. Jen serves on the Board of Musical Café/Play Café in Berkeley, where she is the creator and co-host of Musical Cafe’s monthly Song Salon; a safe space for musical theatre writers to share their new work, and build community.
Matt Coogan (he/him) is a seasoned performer, producer, writer, director, and fight coach. Matt has been involved in dozens of theatre productions across the country. He co-wrote the books for The Last Open Mic and Realtors the Musical, and has produced cabarets, fundraisers, and full scale tech and food events. He performs throughout the Bay Area with his band Constant Coogan. As co-creator of Broadway for the Boardroom, he writes, produces and directs industrial musicals. Matt serves on the board for Musical Café/Play Café helping to develop new work, and is co-host of Musical cafe’s monthly song salon.
The theater itself is not revolutionary:
it is a rehearsal for the revolution."
- Augusto Boal