ARMONK, N.Y. -- Bonnie Gleicher, an Armonk native, wants the theater to be open and accessible to everyone.
Gleicher, who graduated from Byram Hills High School in 2006, is the composer and lyricist of "Addy and Uno," the first family musical about disabilities. The musical will be running at the 14th Street Y Theater in New York City from Sept. 2 to Sept. 24 at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
In "Addy and Uno," Uno, a child with autism, facing the challenges of competing in his school's math competition. His friends with varying disabilities, ADHD, visual, hearing and physical impairment, rally to support him. The characters are told through puppets.
"It's really about bullying, friendship, and differences," Gleicher said. "It's really taken off."
The show is inspired a comic book series written by Dr. Nava Silton, who collaborated with Gleicher on the musical. The comic books have become popular in schools and schools started asking for a show.
Gleicher wrote the music in a month while working with Silton, who has a doctorate in child development to make sure the show was accurate.
Growing up, Gleicher has always loved theater, going straight from school to Broadway, where she performed in "Jane Eyre." "Addy and Uno" is the fourth musical she's written.
"It's my greatest love," Gleicher said. "It's such an emotive process.You have characters going through all these obstacles- I love it so much."
Kids with disabilities are not often featured in movies, TV, and musicals.
"I instantly felt for them," Gleicher said. "I knew this was a story that had to be told. I felt strongly for them. Whether they're having ups or downs, my music is there to capture it all."
Gleicher said kids with disabilities have said they've been finding their anthems like "Watch Me Fly," where a character in a wheelchair is determined to build a rocket and fly into space.
"There's a lot of laughter and tears," Gleicher said.
With less than a month to go before opening day, Gleicher said she is so excited for both kids and adults to freak out over it.
"I can't wait to see kids dancing or doing sign language," Gleicher said. "Whether they have a disability or not, they're going to be inspired. I hope they feel like they can do anything. They have no limits, no matter what they were born with. Absolutely nothing can stop them. Every difference they have is what makes them great."
Gleicher is currently working on a musical called "The Little Things," about six 3rd graders who join together when they find out recess is being canceled.
For more information on Addy and Uno, click here.
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