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Click below to hear the demos of the score of this work in progress

Opening Black and White Ball

Five Hundred of My Closest Friends

One Day Closer to You

Talkin' to Tru

The Black and White Ball

The Black and White Ball

(Book & Lyrics by Stephen Cole; Music by Todd Ellison)

It's 1966. Summer in New York City. America is a country in transition. Racial tensions are coming to a head. Black Power is a new catch-phrase in all the daily papers. The country is divided. Protests and violence are everywhere. The classes are ready to clash!

And best selling In Cold Blood novelist Truman Capote announces he will host a Black and White Ball for five hundred of his closest friends at New York's elite Plaza Hotel.

In Brooklyn, 16 year old Emma, longs to go to Truman's Black and White Ball.

When Capote and Emma meet he takes her under his wing and grooms her for the big night.

Secrets and lies are uncovered at the ball, where Negro and Caucasian really do converge. Add to the mix Truman's fabled swans (Babe Paley, Slim Hayward, Kay Graham and Lee Radizwell) and Emma's protective step-brothers and you have the "real story" of The Black and White Ball.


Talkin' to Tru (reprise)

I Know You

In His Hands

Feet on the Floor/Gliding Through Life


Backin' You Up

The Story

One Night

The Ball

At The Ball

The Actual Invitation to the Ball

Outside of the Lines & Finale

George Woolf singing the 500 of My Closest Friends from The Black and White Ball
Ariana Burks singing the title song from
The Black and White Ball
Ariana Burks

"Up first, The Black and White Ball by Stephen Cole (book, lyrics) and Todd Ellison (music). The scene depicted here was described as a “summer in 1966 when Truman Capote announces he will host a black and white ball for 500 of his closest friends. At the same time a young black teenager misunderstands the event and thinks it is a party to unite the races. Think Anything Goes meets Hairspray. George Andrew Wolf was a delightful, lisping, name-dropping Truman Capote. However, this first set was owned by 15 year old vocal dynamite in action Ariana Burkes as Emma. She may be young in age and small in stature, but Burkes has a powerhouse voice that ignites from that little body. The vocal promising’s of a Kristin Chenoweth blended with Patti Labelle. This little girl has quite a future a head of her. As hopefully, does this show. This was a fantastic debut outing and I for one cannot wait to watch all five of these concepts develop, gel and mature in hopes of becoming the next Wicked, Book of Mormon, Chicago or The Lion King; the next classic modern American Musical."

Times Square Chronicals


The cast of the first table reading of

The Black and White Ball

The Authors: Stephen Cole
& Todd Ellison
George Woolf
 Photos from FWD Theatre Projects Launch Concert...reading to Follow in Jan. 2015

"LaunchingFWD! premiered its first five selected titles to an enthusiastic crowd of Chicagoans craving something thrillingly original: “The Black and White Ball,”

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cole ariana todd after.JPG
authors and cast.JPG
emma rehearsal.JPG
ariana rehearsal.JPG
ariana rehearsal 2.JPG
ariana sings.jpg
george as truman sings.jpg
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todd and cole.JPG
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