A Group of LA Comedians Create a Rockin’ Project: The Fireturtles: An Indie Rockumentary

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Launching this week is a Kickstarter campaign to finance a unique film project called “The Fireturtles: An Indie Rockumentary.” Pioneered by LA actor, comedian, musician, and teacher Brett Duggan and in collaboration with The Actor’s Studio of Orange County, this ragtag group of multi-talented LA-based performers embark on a journey to create an original sitcom series that is unlike anything currently on the airwaves.

The five band members of The Fireturtles

I can tell you from my experience that our performances as 'The Fireturtles' delight the audience in a unique way. - Todd Risenmary

“The Fireturtles: an Indie Rockumentary” origins lie with a smash musical comedy, “The Untold Story of Indie Rock,” performed at Second City Hollywood in Los Angeles. Brett Duggan, the musical’s writer and one of its performers, unveils their unique journey of creating the musical. “We got the opportunity to do a show on the Second City stage. I took it. I wrote the show. Then, with some luck and a lot of hard work from everyone involved on the project, Second City asked us to do a Saturday Premium Show that is still running today.” The stage musical takes the audience through the history of Rock N’ Roll. The five “band” members portray fourteen different bands throughout the past century of rock music. The musical genres range from Doo-Wop to the British Invasion to contemporary Indie. “I couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of something so original and inspired,” says Casey Schuckett, one of the multi-instrumentalist musical comedians, “I can’t wait to share it with the world.”

“The sitcom was the next organic step for the musical to take,” says Duggan. Duggan and lead guitarist Kevin Stafford came up with a concept that utilized the format of the stage musical that the group has developed over the years but made it relevant and appropriate for television. The sitcom will take the premise from the musical and transform it into a documentary style comedy. A band of misfit indie rockers, The Fireturtles, under the thumb of their tyrannical indie label are forced to produce a new album while making a documentary called an indie “rockumentary.” The band discovers an abandoned record shop where the band’s soul-searching members find inspiration from bands in the past. The film series will showcase the hit songs and music that were developed from the stage musical. “A script for the pilot has already been written,” Duggan states. The pilot will feature two original music videos in addition to a host of quirky characters, clever writing, and a belly full of laughs. Todd Risenmay, the band’s bassist, comments on the power of the pilot’s script, “When I read the first draft of the pilot, I was excited to that Brett’s mastery of storytelling and eye for character was going to make this experience possible for the screen.” The pilot for the series will be shot at The Actor’s Studio of Orange County and directed by the owner of the studio, Sonya Cooke. “After we make the pilot, we’re going to shop it around to all the media outlets and we’re not going to stop until we make this series happen,” says Cooke.

In order to make a high quality pilot, Brett Duggan and company with the help of The Actor’s Studio of Orange County are reaching out to fans of the stage musical and other admirers of comedic rock music to make contributions to get the sitcom made. To aid them in this search, the team is using the online website Kickstarter. Their Kickstarter campaign for the pilot will go live this week. In addition to funding the pilot, these performers are producing a fully realized studio album of the music featured in the stage musical and the up-and-coming television series, which they are offering as an incentive to donate to the project. For information about this project, the numerous incentives being offered to backers, and how to donate, their website is cited here: http://kck.st/1pWSJMc. Performances are still going on at Second City: visit http://www.usoirmusical.com for more information.

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