Larry, as he is known, retired as professor of theatre at Brookdale Community College where he directed over 100 shows including 32 musicals. He directed and was instrumental in creating two original musicals that were performed in New York City: Show Business Family and Reach for The Stars with Donna McKechnie. He directed the tri-state premiere of Sheldon Harnick and Joe Raposo's A Wonderful Life. Larry was one of the first people to teach Musical Theatre as a college course, which later became a weekly radio show on Brookdale's WJBD. In his spare time, he has written nightclub concert acts saluting various Broadway composers. Larry's favorite leading lady is his wife and muse, Laurie, whom he directed in She Loves Me, The Night Of The Iguana, The Miracle Worker, Same Time Next Year, A Streetcar Named Desire, Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolfe and their final show at Brookdale, Long Day's Journey Into Night. Larry opened the Axelrod Performing Arts Center with his production of Sondheim's Follies. Larry loved working with others on new musicals, so he decided to write his own. In collaboration with composer, Gerald H. Bailey, The Next Big Thing is the result.
J. LAURENCE LOWENSTEIN
“Jerry” has been involved with over two hundred productions as an actor, director, musical director, and composer. As an actor, he has worked with Orson Bean and Jane Withers in Bye Bye Birdie, Jane Powell in Brigadoon and Leonard Nimoy in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. In addition to his work on The Next Big Thing, he has written music for Courting (The Live Theatre), The Enchanted Island (The Peripatetic Task Force) and The 51st Ward (Theatre Building Chicago). His recent musical, Parasol, was a semi-finalist in the Moondance International Film Festival, a finalist with The Chicago Musical Theatre Company, a finalist in the 2017 NYC Women’s Work Festival, and a finalist with the 2018 Pallas Theatre Collective. Alegrías y lágrimas (Happiness and Tears), a play with songs based on the immigrant experience, was recently performed in May and June of this past year at Gorilla Tango Chicago.