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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – february 28 2020

Jessica and Lindsay Avellino Present Compelling Musical Bursting Mental Health Stigmas



Jessica and Lindsay Avellino present: raw and compelling rock musical, set in the broken psyche of Emma Black, a 15-year-old girl who is unable to cope with the tragic loss of her sister in Jessica Avellino and Lindsay Avellino’s dark heart.

TWO PERFORMANCES ONLY: Saturday April 25 @ 7pm and Sunday April 26 @ TBD

Elon University


Free – reserve tickets:

Lindsay Avellino
(914) 815-6135


elon, nc (february 28, 2020) – This April, Jessica and Lindsay Avellino breaks the stigma around teenage mental health with subversive and evocative dark heart -- music by Jessica Avellino and book and lyrics by Jessica and Lindsay Avellino. dark heart will run April 25th and 26th. Tickets are free, and can be reserved at ___. Exploding preconceptions of teenage mental health, dark heart takes place in the broken psyche of Emma Black, a 15-year-old girl who is unable to cope with the tragic loss of her sister. After a suicide attempt, she returns to her boarding school surrounded by friends and is haunted by the ghost of her sister, Alise. Riddled with guilt and depression, Emma must fight to survive in the war against her own emotions.


Called “contemporary and catchy” by the Stage UK, dark heart’s score is vibrant and punchy, conjuring the sounds of Billie Eilish and Florence and the Machine.

At this critical moment for the arts and the country, the Avellino’s believe strongly in the power of representation in theatre and are proud to write and produce a musical featuring an all-female cast and a heavily female band and crew. They also recognize the prevalence of mental health issues, particularly in teenagers, and the importance of provoking a necessary discussion.  “Mental health is something we see very little representation of in the musical world, and we hope to shed light on these issues and offer validation for those who are coping.” says writer Lindsay Avellino. Fringe Guru says “This is a deep and thoughtful look at teenage mental health.... This surprisingly upbeat show is an empathetic look at what being trapped in your own mind can feel like. It provides food for thought, a terrifying glimpse into another world – and most of all, a hopeful message.”


JESS AVELLINO (Music, Book, and Lyrics)

LINDSAY AVELLINO (Book and lyrics)


Director and Music Director is Jessica Avellino. Assistant Director is Andrea Moore. Scenic design by Jess Avellino and Dr. Todd Coleman; costume design by Jess Avellino and Lindsay Avellino; conducted by Dr. Todd Coleman. Production stage manager is Andrea Moore. Assistant stage manager is Maggie Brown.

Cast includes:

  • Kaylee Hayden (Emma Black)

  • Nicole Romeo (Alise Black)

  • Bella Reynolds (Dr. Samantha Evans)

  • Alexa Lugo (Grace)

  • Eliza Spear (Scarlet)

  • Kate Wallace (Nellie)

  • Maecy Bischoff (Laci)

  • Eva Pierce (Liz)

Musicians include:

  • Ross Cohen (Piano)

  • Hannah Strickland (Violin)

  • Julia Edwards (Cello)

  • Quinn Tuff (Electric/Acoustic Guitar)

  • Ian Rondon (Bass)

  • Andrew High (Drums)


Sponsors and Partners

  • Elon University Student Government Association

Media Notes

For interviews and more information, contact Lindsay Avellino at or 914-815-6135.

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© 2020 by Lindsay Avellino.