Sit back and relax: Michelle J. Rodriguez is in the Playbill Office, and she brought peaceful energy with her. Rodriguez is the newest addition to Playbill's Songwriter Series. Presented by Audible Theater, the series is dedicated to spotlighting emerging composers and features a new video every month.
Rodriguez, both a writer and performer, presented four compositions from her new musical Presencia, including "When I Found You," "My Succulent Plant," "Promised Land," and a medley containing pieces of the songs "Nowhere to Go," "When I See No Other Way," and "Intuition."
Accompanying Rodriguez is Idris, a jazz musician and music director who has previously toured with Topaz Jones, Cleo Reed, Linda Diaz, J Hoard and Elah Hale.
Michelle J. Rodriguez is a winner of the 2022 Helen Merrill Award for playwriting, a Van Lier Fellow at Ars Nova, and a former NPR Tiny Desk Contest finalist. Her work has received support through the New York Theatre Workshop, The Public Theater, the Sundance Institute, SPACE on Ryder Farm, The Sol Project, Kentucky Governor’s School for the Arts, Salonathon and the University of Chicago.
Rodriguez's musicals include the bluegrass/folk musical East o’, West o’!, the geriatric coming-of-age story Betty White: The Musical!, the cross-cultural kids-of-immigrants tale JIRAN, the Chicago crime thriller Bibliophile, and ROKERA, a musical about three young women of color who start a rock band in Brooklyn. Additionally, Rodriguez composed music for the play AZUL by Christina Quintana.
Audible Theater is a proud sponsor of Playbill’s Songwriter Series. Audible Theater makes outstanding performances and powerful storytelling available to millions of people all over the world. As part of this initiative, Audible has produced Girls & Boys with Carey Mulligan, The Half-Life of Marie Curie with Kate Mulgrew, Harry Clarke starring Billy Crudup, and many others at the Minetta Lane Theatre in New York City. Audible was also a co-producer for the Broadway transfer of the Tony Award-nominated Latin History for Morons, written by and starring John Leguizamo; and for the Tony Award-nominated Sea Wall/A Life starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Tom Sturridge. Since June 2017, Audible has commissioned 40 playwrights to receive support from its $5 million Emerging Playwrights Fund dedicated to developing innovative English-language works from around the globe and keeping with Audible’s core commitment to elevating listening experiences through powerful performances and extraordinary vocal storytelling.
Sing for Hope harnesses the power of the arts to create a better world. Our creative programs bring hope, healing, and connection to millions of people in hospitals, schools, care facilities, refugee camps, transit hubs, and community spaces worldwide. A non-profit organization founded in New York City in response to the events of 9/11, Sing for Hope partners with hundreds of community-based organizations, mobilizes thousands of artists in creative service, and produces artist-created Sing for Hope Pianos across the US and around the world. The official Cultural Partner of the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates, Sing for Hope champions art for all because we believe the arts have an unmatched capacity to uplift, unite, and heal. Learn more at SingForHope.org.