JMU students collaborate to create Sound Cycle Musical Theatre show

This video is about Anna DeNoia and Joshua Villa as they start their journey of Anna’s original Sound Cycle Musical Theatre show, Open Stay.

With inspiration from Jason Robert Brown, Anna DeNoia talks about how she started imagining these songs and lyrics during her Starbucks shifts in Carrier Library.

Most musicals take years to write, but with the help of Anna’s previous work on the show, composer Joshua Villa was able to compose all of Open Stay in roughly three and a half months. These two powerhouses also had not met before this year.

After Anna DeNoia won the CVPA Undergraduate Research Grant for this show, she tried to compose the musical by herself. After realizing she needed assistance, she cold emailed some professors asking who would be a good fit to complete her team.

She got an instant answer- Joshua Villa.

One reason this team works so well together is that they're both storytellers. Joshua was able to understand Anna’s lyrics like none other and even gave further insight to Anna herself.

With the CVPA Grant, they intended to use this fund to pay their musicians for their hard work. Unfortunately, the funds wouldn’t cover those costs, so instead they used these funds to professionally record this album at the Virginia Arts Recording Studio. These recorded songs will be released soon, but until then check out a previous recording without orchestration on Spotify.