WE WRITE CATCHY TUNES AND HEARTFELT SCRIPTS-
SOMETIMES FOR THE BROADWAY, SOMETIMES FOR THE OFF-BROADWAY, SOMETIMES FOR THE HELL OF IT
In the song, by Michael Heitzman and Ilene Reid, Luker twits her image as a “spoonful of saccharine” but also punctures it. The gist is that lower-voiced belters get all the laugh lines, possibly because it’s so “hard to land a joke up here” — in the soprano stratosphere. Playing Laurey in “Oklahoma!,” Luker complains, “I’ll sing my ass off, but Ado Annie steals the show.” Then she disproves it by ripping a thrilling high C.
Luker was 58 when she last performed the number live, during a concert with Wilfert at Merkin Hall in Manhattan. That was in September 2019, 15 months before she died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as A.L.S. or Lou Gehrig’s disease.
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MEET THE TEAM
Michael Heitzman and Ilene Reid are the Grammy-nominated songwriters of “Throw That Girl Around” from the Broadway musical, Swing!
Their musical Bingo (the winning musical) written with David Holcenberg, had a successful Off-Broadway run and continues to have numerous productions nationally and internationally. It was honored with the 2007 Bay Area Critics Association Award for Best Musical.
Their critically acclaimed musical, Vices: A Love Story, written with collaborators Susan Draus and Everett Bradley, was produced at the Caldwell Theatre where it was nominated for eight 2010 Carbonell Awards including Best New Work and Best Musical.
Vices, which Variety called “a minor miracle…a sensual celebration”, ended a successful run at Theatre Aspen and continues its developmental journey with plans for a New York City run.
2009 Dramatists Guild Fellows, they recently completed a two year residency with Indiana University Premier Musicals where they developed their new musical, Solana.
In addition to having several theatrical, TV and film scripts in development, they wrote for the NBC series Just Deal and their sitcom Scott Free, developed with Barbra Streisand’s production company Barwood Films and Kelsey Grammer’s production company Grammnet, was purchased by Paramount Pictures.
They are both proud members of The Dramatists Guild, BMI and the Writer’s Guild of America, East.