Building an artistic bridge between Buffalo and Broadway


A Star Is Born 

Starring Buffalo was founded in December 2017 to connect, entertain, teach, and thrill, and above all, to provide top-quality musical theater. Drew Fornarola, Artistic Director, was inspired by NYC’s City Center Encores! Series, which offers short-run, unstaged versions of musicals starring superb Broadway performers, a perfect model for attracting busy acting professionals to build top-quality musical experiences out of town. The final twist was to make the professional performances a participatory opportunity for students: by allowing high school choirs to join in rehearsing and performing these shows, they would get a window into a life in professional theater.

Drew and Laura Brodie, Board Chair, quickly pulled together an all-star team to bring the idea to fruition. The two drew on their high school experience in the music department at Williamsville East to develop an interdisciplinary model for performances, designed to incorporate talent and art from a wide range of sources. With the entity and concept established, the Starring Buffalo team is thrilled to put on their first show in October 2018.

26 U.S.C. § 501(c)(3) application pending


Meet the Team

Laura Brodie, Chair (Co-Founder)
Vice President, Burt Rigid Box, Inc.

Drew Fornarola (Co-Founder)
Theatrical Producer, Writer

Steven Tartick (Co-Founder)
Executive Creative Director, RPM 

Rosemary Enright
Partner, Barclay Damon LLP

Keith Frome
CEO/Co-Founder, Peer Forward

Lynne Kurdziel Formato
Director, Choreographer, Educator

Michael Russo
Instructional Specialist, Williamsville CSD 

Dina Sarno Slawson
Artistic Director/Owner, Academy of Theatre Arts 


Christopher Berg, Counsel