It’s 8am, in the year 8,000 BCE.

What are you worried about?

Water. Neighbors. Death. The Usual!

Tribe Without A God is a new original musical that shows what humanity is all about.

A massive flood hits a Neolithic village, and almost everybody dies. Trouble is, they were Children of the River – they worshiped the River God as their “Great Protector.” The scrappy band of survivors, led by ex-river priest TomTom, decide to find out if the River God is really the best god around.

First, TomTom creates a “jug test” to see which god can fill up a sealed jug with water via the power of prayer, but it flops when everyone cheats. After falling in love with a woman of very different religious convictions (Silverlight, who worships a small rock), and seeing a powerful “god” up close and personal (their uber-patriarchal neighbors, the Mammoth tribe, led by the bro-y mammoth-riding Emissary), TomTom realizes that gods are powerful even if they don’t exist – it’s the lessons they teach their followers that is the essence of their power.

TomTom can’t hide from his responsibilities anymore: he must choose the right god, and the right story, that will become the backbone of his people. But how can he choose, when everyone has a different favorite?

Tribe Without a God feels like Mel Brooks meets Bertrand Russell, and sounds like African drumming, Gregorian chant, rock and roll, Appalachian folk tunes, and Andrew Lloyd Webber. Tribe Without a God will make you laugh, cry, crave barbecue, and question the role of faith in your life and in your community.

About the author

Christiana Cole (book/lyrics/music) moved from Austin, Texas to New York to study opera singing at the Manhattan School of Music. But while they were in school, Christiana began sneaking into composition classes, and convinced the registrar to let them cross-register at Columbia University, where they studied creative writing. Christiana studied composition with Dr. Mark Stambaugh and Christopher Cerrone. Christiana served as dramaturg on Cerrone’s Pulitzer Prize-nominated opera Invisible Cities. Christiana’s first full-scale work was Bombshell Baby, a musical about a drag queen who fights Nazis. (Christiana wrote book/lyrics and co-wrote the music with Rachel Felstein.) Bombshell Baby was presented in a sold-out run at the Ensemble Studio Theatre in July 2012.

Christiana is a member of the the Advanced Songwriting Workhop and Librettists Workshop within the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theater Writers Workshop. Current projects (besides Tribe Without A God) include Republicana (book/music/lyrics), a modern tragedy about a faith healer, a nurse, and a drug addict in a small town in Texas; Puritan, Lesbian, Witch, (book/music, with Laura Kleinbaum on book/lyrics) about a Puritan girl accused of witchcraft who dives through a time vortex and lands in America in the 90’s; and Apocrypha (book/music/lyrics), the amazing true story of the founding of the early Christian church.

Christiana has written a number of musicals for children, including Peanut Butter and Cupcake (based on the best-selling children’s book by Terry Border) and Sparkle Spa (based on the Scholastic series by Jill Santopolo), which were both produced at Interlakes Theatre in New Hampshire. Christiana wrote lyrics, with music by Rogers award-winner Brad Ross (Little by Little) and book by New York Times best-selling author Jill Santopolo (The Light We Lost). Her adaptation of The Frog Prince (written with Kristin Madden and Brennan Johnson) was commissioned and produced by Random Farms Kids Theatre, and has subsequently been licensed and produced across Asia, in Japan, China and Korea.

Christiana is a winner of NPR’s The MOTH Story Slam, and was featured on The MOTH GrandSlam, where they told a story about a weird thing they did when they were 8. Christiana is a featured vocalist on the soundtrack of the Sundance-selected film The Farewell, starring the rapper Awkwafina.

To learn more about Christiana, visit their site here:

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