SAMPLES OF MY MUSIC
Here are samples of my music from all the shows I’ve written and am currently writing. If you’re interested in using one of them for an audition or performance, be sure to send me an email.
A musical about a girl living with Borderline Personality Disorder and struggling for normalcy amidst a revolving door of therapists and more prescriptions than she can count.
Music and Lyrics by Benjamin Velez
Set in the woods outside a decimated Philadelphia, this is the story of two teenagers, Theo and Lu, coming of age in the post-apocalypse.
"Before the End" - Despite Philadelphia being gone and them finding the world different that what was promised to them, they realize having each other and having their family is the light they have to get them through the darkness.
"Afterland" - The characters retell the story of Theo and Lu searching for Philadelphia as that of folklore, mythologizing their journey.
"Can You See" - Lu challenges Theo to open his mind and try seeing the world around him in a new light.
What does it mean to be turning 30 and living with your parents? How can you face the future when you’re buried in student debt, can’t find a steady job, or afford health insurance? Starblasters follows five friends struggling with these questions while working at their local run-down theme park.
"Neverland" - Neil just lost his job and moved back in with his parents, here's hoping it's only for a short while...
"Rig the Game"
At their fourth of July celebration, Neil and his co-workers are given the sobering news that the park will indeed be closing. They were already hanging by a thread, barely able to stay afloat even while being home, and now that thread has been cut. Neil tries to vent his frustration by shooting a basket on the nearby arcade game, but misses. He shoots again and misses. The third time he tries to shove the ball into the basket but it’s too big to fit and pops out. He screams. They all feel the injustice and it builds into a savage frenzy.
"Erica Save Me" - After months of passive aggressively avoiding each other, the park’s closing pushes Freddie and Neil to a reconciliation, during which Neil finally learns that all this time, Freddie has been madly in love with Erica. Pining for years from the concessions stand, but unable to tell her, Freddie admits that the best part of her day is watching Erica “save” the audience on the Starblaster ride.
With time at the park running out, Neil agrees to help Freddie get past being tongue tied around Erica and he has Freddie practice how she is going to finally confess her love.
"Prom Was a Promise" - Neil and Freddie haven't spoken since Prom, but what was all the bad blood about?
A musical about the young Albert Einstein as he rebels against family and authority, finds love, and struggles against the establishment to change how we understand the universe and ourselves.
“Seriously Serious” - Mileva, Albert, Ensemble
This song follows Mileva, the Serbian girl Albert will marry who has defined herself by being the rare woman in the male-dominated field of physics. We follow her from the moment after she gets her letter of acceptance to the Polytechnic to when she matriculates and first sees Albert, to when she and Albert are dating during their second year. The song is a montage in which we go to different places and skip forward in time.
**Note that I sing both characters, although the song is mostly Mileva. Albert’s section begins with “What a find, What a mind…” and ends after the next set of “Seriously Serious” before the dreamy section.
A private Dutch venture dubbed "Mars One" claims they can beat NASA to sending the first humans to Mars. The hitch? It's a one-way trip backed by questionable technology, and yet 200,000 people have already applied. But who are they?! Who is doing that!?!
Adapted from the play by the same name, I have the honor of working with the playwright herself, Debra Zoe Laufer, to adapt her hilariously poignant story into a musical. Loosely based on the myths of Orpheus and Odysseus, the show follows an aging couple struggling to rediscover their passion for life and each other.
The project that convinced me writing for Musical Theater was what I wanted to do for a living, this is Columbia's oldest performing arts tradition in which each year a group of students write/produce/direct/perform an original musical about the school. Take a trip back to college and listen to all the songs!
This was an exciting piece written over the course of three days, then rehearsed and performed in front of an audience at NYMF that same week.
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.