Pennsylvania and New Jersey Teens Steal the Spotlight with Captivating New Musical

Pictured above: Twin sisters Cassi (Left) and Jess (Right) Daley are both sharing their talents in “Alien8” Photo Credit: Contributed.



New Hope,  PA – A new musical — “Alien8” — written by Kate Brennan and David Lee White was developed with and written for teenagers and speaks to intergenerational views of gender, identity, and inclusion within an anthem of belonging, love, and acceptance. Written in the style of “Dear Evan Hansen,” “Be More Chill,” and “Heathers,” it is performed by the Playhouse Youth Company at Bucks County Playhouse from Thursday, July 27 through Sunday, July 30 at 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. A hit last summer with an all-student cast, “Alien8” tells the story of a small town that has to change when a mysterious new student enters its high school.

Directed and choreographed by Kara Jönsson, with musical direction by Kyle Duke, “Alien8” features a beautiful contemporary score performed by the Playhouse Youth Company Orchestra and a diverse cast of characters. The show challenges the audience to think deeply about who they really are, who they want to be, and how to reconcile differences between present and future selves.

“We are excited to remount this beautiful show for our BCP audiences and for our Youth Company to bring it back to the Playhouse stage. ‘Alien8’ covers a variety of topics, and themes that are relevant and meaningful to anyone growing up during changing times and we love how the show David and Kate created resonates so deeply with people of all ages,” says Michaela Murphy, Playhouse Director of Education. “We hope everyone will join us to discover for the first time, or to once again experience the sophistication, heart, and hope in this beautiful new musical about finding forgiveness and the strength to face an uncertain future.”

The composers Kate Brennan from York, PA and David Lee White from Bordentown, NJ workshopped “Alien8” at McCarter Theater in Princeton, NJ. A student production was also presented at Drexel University.

Pictured above: Jess Daley plays the roles of Suzann and Clara and she’s in the ensemble in “Alien8”. Photo Credit: Contributed.

The Playhouse Youth Company production of “Alien8” features a cast consisting of 17 local performers ages 13-18 who are selected by audition for this conservatory-style training program. Youth Company participants this year represent 12 different high schools and middle schools in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The cast includes: Mia Alicea (Benjamin Rush Arts Academy), Felix Arnstein (Central Bucks East High School), Helena Badiali (Central Bucks East High School), Skylar Carter (New Hope Solebury High School), Jessica Daley (Pennsbury High School), Atticus Fiorito (Delaware Valley Regional High School), Sofia Ines Garcia (Lawrence High School), Amanda Garvey (Central Bucks East High School), Izzy Hoskins (Council Rock North High School), Liam Quinn Jackson (North Penn High School), Athena Matthes (Pennsbury High School), Bella Matthes (Pennwood Middle School), Maya Micsion (Council Rock North High School), Michael Murphy (Council Rock High School South), Liam Neill (Pennsbury High School), Bridget Parker (New Hope-Solebury High School), and Elli Vallow (Solebury School).

The Youth Company Orchestra includes Kyle Duke (Keys), Zach Dessel (Bass), Brendan Adames (Drums), Jake Noble (Guitar), Nicole Fassold (Violin) and Andrian Harabaru (Cello). Cassi Daley (Pennsbury High School) is Student Assistant Director. Paul Miller is Lighting & Visual Design Consultant. Costume designer is Michaela Murphy. Mackenzie Seewagen is Production Stage Manager. 

Pictured above: Cassi Daley the Student Assistant Director for “Alien8” appreciates everyone’s dedication to the show. It’s her first time working with the Playhouse Youth Company and she says, “it’s been wonderful.” Photo Credit: Contributed.

Single tickets to “Alien8” are on sale now. Tickets start at $15 for children and $20 for adults plus fees. Patrons save 20% off when buying 4 or more tickets. Special rates for groups of 10 or more. The Youth Company production will play daily at 11:00am and 7:00pm. Three show season ticket packages are still available for the main stage series. For complete details, and to purchase tickets, please visit or call 215-862-2121.

Now in its 10th year, Playhouse Youth Company is a 5-week intensive training program for students with a serious interest in theater to receive valuable theatrical instruction from working Broadway artists. Bucks County Playhouse’s rigorous training program includes daily rehearsals for a professionally produced production; master classes with artists from the Playhouse’s main stage; and outreach performances throughout the region. In 2017, Playhouse Youth Company performed for more than 3,100 people on the Playhouse mainstage and in outreach performances at local libraries, museums, and festivals.

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