Andrew Baughman has a way of making whatever he touches cool. Remember those grade B musicals Landless Theatre used to do on DCAC’s tiny bedroom size stage? Shows like Cannibal! The Musical, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, Perez Hilton Saves the Universe!, Walmartonia. Totally cool.
And then his musical soul, which always loved rock-style musicals, discovered prog-metal and we got the likes of Frankenstein which led to that memorable moment in the lives of Andrew and Melissa (director of most of Landless’ shows) Baughman when Stephen Sondheim called to give them his blessing to do a prog-metal version of Sweeney Todd. Cool enough even for the Helen Hayes Award judges, who gave them three nominations in 2015.
He’s moved Landless Theatre to Frederick, Maryland, is opening the 12,000 square foot East Street Arts Center on June 1st and promises we’ll get to see his latest, a symphonic metal version of The Mystery of Edwin Drood this summer.
Amidst building an arts center and producing a musical, Baughman has turned his coolness touch to the kids he calls “drama kids” and their bewildered parents. He’s written a book Sing Out, Louise!: A Parent’s Survival Guide to Raising a Drama Kid, based on his experiences as both an educator and a parent. And takes it several steps further with his Facebook discussion group Mr. B’s Virtual Drama Class where fellow teachers and parents are talking about such things as cast romances, Disney, acting schools, and today’s topic, “the star is born” moment.
Rock on, Mr. B.