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Dustin Klein & Tom Alvarez | Calder: The Musical

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Calder: The Musical

by Dustin Klein & Tom Alvarez

The catchy songs of the"Calder, The Musical" score reflect elements of classical, jazz, blues, Latin, ragtime,and pops music and is uniquely American with universal appeal.
Genre: Easy Listening: Musicals/Broadway
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Ton of a Man
3:30 $0.99
2. Path to Follow
3:25 $0.99
3. Pour Vous
3:32 $0.99
4. Im Famous Im Free
2:33 $0.99
5. Thats for Sure
3:46 $0.99
6. Prize in the Sky
5:32 $0.99
7. Were It Not for Me
3:58 $0.99
8. Mobile Ballet
2:41 $0.99
9. Dance with Me
3:22 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
"Calder, The Musical" - Music by Dustin Klein and lyrics by Tom Alvarez. Book by Dustin Klein and Tom Alvarez.

"Calder creates a world in which there is no evil." - Arthur Miller, Playwright


“Calder, The Musical” is based on the life of American artist Alexander Calder who created "a world in which there is no evil” through his art. The family-friendly musical explores Calder's deep conviction that—in a world filled with discord, violence and war—art has the power to inspire peace. Also about the power of ideas and imagination, the homage brings Calder’s art to life and seeks to mirror its whimsy and joyfulness through drama, music, song, dance, and visual art.


"Calder, the Musical" traces the life of American artist Alexander Calder and brings his art to life on stage through a theatrical experience of drama, music, dance, and visual art. Narrated by an unlikely muse, the show chronicles his beginnings as a young boy through nearly eighty years of artistic creation. The story opens at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City at the opening of “Calder’s Universe,” a major retrospective of his career. As the guests stroll, we flashback in time. We explore his whimsical creations beginning in his childhood workshop, to the streets of Paris, to his movable wire circus of the 1920s and 30s, new loves and paths to follow on ship journeys, hardships as a struggling artist, creation of his mobiles and stabiles, and more, all amid the ongoing conflicts and times of the 20th century. The musical comes back full circle again in the Whitney Museum near the end of his life. Within a world of increasing and continual dark influences, audiences will be transported to Calder's imaginative world where art has the ability to bridge ideas of hope, and harmony.

An abbreviated preview of "Calder, The Musical" was presented at the Indianapolis IndyFringe Theatre Festival, Aug. 18 - 28, 2016 and was named the #1 best-selling show.

The full production received its world premiere at the IndyFringe Basile Theatre in Indianapolis, on Jan. 27 and through Feb. 12. The production was both a critical and box office success.

Review: Ken Klingenmeier "A Seat on The Aisle"

Calder, the Musical, which opened as a full-length musical production last night (after wowing IndyFringe crowds last summer in a one hour version), is a grand testament to the talents and ingenuity of two local artists – Tom Alvarez, who wrote the book and the lyrics, and Dustin Klein, who wrote the music. Having fallen upon the story of mobile originator Alexander Calder in a children’s book about 2 years ago, the friends decided to work together and write an original story and score. The fruition of their endeavor, as witnessed in the packed house world premiere, is a colorful and well-tuned entertainment.

This original score is brim-full with emotional and spirited songs and compositions, including three standouts. The inspirational “A Path to Follow” encases Calder’s realization of where to head in his artistic life, while the especially romantic “Prize in the Sky” surrounds Calder and his soon-to-be wife Louisa with a passionate aura. I also thought the wonderful music written for “The Mobile Ballet”, which duplicates the many multi-colored parts of Calder’s early pieces, was delightfully noteworthy. Oh, and I could also add the lively and fun “Dance With Me” to this list. And while I am on the musical aspects of the show, let me just mention what a talented pianist Mr. Klein is proven to be. As the show’s rather small band consists of Klein’s piano, and a drum set (worked by Scottie May), with occasional input by an accordionist (Giselle Trujillo) – it falls to the piano to lead the way, and composer Klein provides a profoundly skillful turn at the keyboard.

Visually impressive, the Calder story features a cast of 14, many playing multiple roles, decked out in a large variety of colorful costumes designed by Cheryl Harmon and Nancy Fansler, in scenes impressively illuminated by Laura Hildreth’s delightful illustrations as rendered in Ben Dobler’s impressive projections.

Christa Runion plays Thalia the Muse, who is our guide and storyteller for the show. Her spunky approach to the part aptly provides much of the humor in the production. Logan Moore handles the title role with authority. His fine baritone voice is a pleasure to hear and his expressiveness in his interpretations both musical and emotional hit the mark. As Louisa, his wife, Katie Schuman varies well between a sweet softness and a frustrated strain. Moore and Ms. Schuman share the “Prize in the Sky” duet which, again, I feel was unquestionably a highlight of the show.

The busy supporting cast members play their many parts with energy and focus. Danielle Carnagua is lovely as Calder’s artist mother while Jake McDuffee firmly provides the father role, though often in rather a too quiet voice. Among the featured dancers in Mariel Greenlee’s solid choreography, Matt Rohrer leads the way along with Ms. Carnagua. Among the smaller roles, Gabby Niehaus (who happens to be my dear niece) nails the comic facets of her cameo as Zelda Fitzgerald, Tianna Williams is remarkable as expatriate entertainer Josephine Baker, and youngsters Ian Gamble and Piper Murphy are a delight as the young “Sandy” Calder and his sister, Peggy. The stage is often filled with the supporting cast members, to the point where I think a larger staged venue might be the next logical step for any future productions of the show.

Bottom line: There was a magical feeling in the room as we gathered to watch this very original undertaking. It succeeded on most levels and is unquestionably a fine entertainment to put on your calendar. But Calder is a big musical, I think, and I would really love to see it produced at a full staged venue with all the accoutrements therein – room for a fuller orchestra, with miked voices, and expanded choreography and settings. I feel Mssrs. Alvarez and Klein’s big idea deserves big treatment.

Review: Ethel Winslow - Weekly Review Community Newspaper

One of the bona fide hits of IndyFringe 16 was “Calder, the Musical,” a homage to the artist famous for his mobile sculptures. Co-written by composer Dustin Klein and directed by Indianapolis art critic Tom Alvarez (also the show's lyricist), the Fringe show was an hour of movement and music in front of whimsical backdrop of Calder-inspired moving paintings (created by Irvington artist Laura Hildreth) that garnered praise from the many in the sell-out shows who saw it in the short form.

The hour and a half show full-on Calder, The Musical at the IndyFringe Basile Theatre was greeted with the same enthusiasm by the opening night sell-out crowd. More songs and characters flesh out the story of Alexander Calder, known as Sandy to his friends, in this longer edition of the show. The Greek muse Thalia (Christa Runion) narrates the highlights of Calder’s life, from his youth when he showed early artistic gifts in an artistically gifted family (and was bullied for being different), through his young adult years as an unhappy mechanical engineer, then as an illustrator for the Ringling Brothers circus. There, he began his unique wire sculpture circus figures, which found a wider arts audience. He met his wife Louisa on a ship, and she encouraged his art, supporting his vision. Calder spent time in Paris among the “lost generation,” including Zelda Fitzgerald, Josephine Baker, and Gertrude Stein, and was friends with Piet Mondrian, whose work inspired the first mobile. Fame quickly followed the mobile sculptures, which were revolutionary in the art world. However, with fame came problems – a neglected home life, and constant pressure to produce. A devastating fire in his studio in Connecticut brings the couple closer together, but also forces Calder to start over. Finally, an important exhibition at the Whitney Museum in New York City reveals the importance of his life’s work.

The cast of Calder, the Musical, is fronted by the skills of Logan Moore, a veteran of several local stages, playing Sandy Calder. Young Sandy is played by Ian Gamble or Teddy Rayhill (depending on performance) in a role that requires a lot of a young actor. Young Peggy Calder, Sandy’s protective sister, is played by Jordan Pecar or Piper Murphy. Louisa is played by Katie Shuman, while Jake McDuffee plays his father (and other roles), and Danielle Carnagua plays his mother (among other roles). All the principles and supporting cast are uniformly good, with strong singing voices and some sure-footed dancing on a very small stage. Outstanding tunes include “A Path to Follow” sung by the inspired Sandy, and “I’m Famous, I’m Free” by Josephine Baker, though all the music moves the story forward.

Calder, The Musical continues on weekends through Feb. 12 in the IndyFringe Theatre, 719 E. St. Clair St. Visit IndyFringe.org for availability (shows have been selling out).



to write a review

K. Klingenmeier

Glad to hear these songs again!
Wow! How wonderful to be able to hear Dustin and Tom's fine score again. This is more than I expected from these two - again! Nice job with the studio work by all involved. My favorites - Path to Follow and Prize in the Sky - sound amazing! Also fun to hear the beautiful instrumental - Mobile Ballet! Looking forward to see you mount the show in Chicago!