BMI First Year Workshop  |  2010 - 2011

The following songs were written with various collaborators during my first year in the BMI workshop. Most of the assignments were very specific, making it impossible to use the songs in any other context, but were fun challenges to write nonetheless.


"The Shrink Song"  |  Music by Benjamin Velez  |  Lyrics by Lezlie Wade

ASSIGNMENT: Write a sad hello, or a happy goodbye. It should be clear which one we were going for…  |  Performed by Kathryn Hathaway

"What A Pretty Silver Case"  |  Music by Benjamin Velez  |  Lyrics by Deborah Zoe Laufer

ASSIGNMENT: Write a song for Blanche during the scene directly following the infamous moment where Stanley repents his beating Stella by screaming her name and begging her to come back to him. Blanche is stunned when Stella does come back to him, and shares a dazed moment with Mitch in which she remarks on the beauty of his cigarette case.  |  Demo sung by me.

"More Than A Machine" - 10 Minute Musical   |   Music by Benjamin Velez  |  Lyrics by Nic Cory

Loosely based on the supercomputer Watson, who famously competed on Jeopardy in the show's only human-versus-machine match-up to date. In our version we explore Watson's identity crisis, giving him human emotions that directly conflict his programming. We watch as Watson falls for his fellow competitor Erica, a single mother in desperate need of the prize money. Can he abandon his programming and lose on purpose, gallantly proving his love to Erica?

Here are two songs from the 10 minute project. Watson's soliloquy on breaking free of his programming ("More Than A Machine") and his love song with Erica ("Who Is You"). The majority of the piece takes place in a dream-like state meant to represent the internal thoughts of each contestant during final jeopardy.

Watson: Ted Malawer  |  Erica: Tess Soltau