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Best Revival Tony Award-Winner Once on this Island Co-Produced by NYFA Musical Theatre Alum Yael Silver

Best Revival Tony Award-Winner Once on this Island Co-Produced by NYFA Musical Theatre Alum Yael Silver

June 11, 2018 The 72nd Annual Tony Awards were an incredible highlight in this year’s busy award season calendar, and the New York Film Academy couldn’t be more proud of our very own Musical Theatre Conservatory alum Yael Silver, who co-produced Best Revival Tony Award-winning musical Once on This Island. Congratulations, Yael!

The memorable award ceremony included glittering performances from hosts Josh Groban and Sarah Bareilles, lifetime achievement awards for living legends Chita Rivera and Andrew Lloyd Webber, live goats courtesy of Once on This Island, and a powerful performance of Seasons of Love from Rent by students from Marjory Stoneman High School, in honor of their teacher Melody Herzfeld.

In an evening filled with stars and emotional celebrations at this year’s Tony Awards, Once on This Island’s win for Best Musical Revival was considered richly deserved, but nevertheless one of the more thrilling surprises of the night.

Once on This Island first opened in 1990, and follows a young Caribbean woman whose destiny hinges on a bet between the gods of love and death. The musical does not shy away from difficult topics, such as race, class, and gender divides, yet all are addressed through a perspective that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit.

The Tony Award-winning revival production features a revamped Calypso score, original staging and production design that positions it on an island immediately following a devastating hurricane. As The New York Times points out, the set and design were inspired by Haiti, and also evoke the recent disaster of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico.

The diverse and vibrant production, hailed by many as one of the most moving musical storytelling experiences in recent years, spoke to NYFA grad Yael Silver’s desire to be a part of creating more and better roles for women on stage. Yael is co-founder of SilverWalport Productions, one of the production companies behind this year’s Tony Award-winning revival.

"That was one of the reasons that I chose to leave acting and go into producing,” she explains, “Because I wanted to see true representations of women on stage."

Yael completed NYFA Professional Conservatory of Musical Theatre’s one-year program in 2015, and aside from running her Tony-winning production company, she is also associate producer at Grammy- and Tony-winning Broadway Records, head of artist development at Yellow Sound Label, and a part of the board of directors at Sokoloff Arts.

"I was drawn to NYFA because of the teachers here,” she explains. “They come to work, teach you in the morning, and then they go do their Broadway show. You can’t put a price tag on that."

“I don’t think there are many programs that offer that and NYFA just gave me the opportunity to learn from the best of the best,” adds Yael. “I’m incredibly grateful for my time here. It really shaped who I am.”

Congratulations to Yael Silver and the whole team behind Once on This Island for their Tony Award win!

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