The Sweethearts of Swing is a work of historical fiction, inspired by true stories of interracial all-female swing bands of the 1940s and the white women who "passed" as black in order to play with them. Though all of the characters are completely fictional, many of the play's events are drawn from the actual experiences of women who played in bands such as the Darlings of Rhythm, the All-Star Girl Orchestra, and the International Sweethearts of Rhythm.
The International Sweethearts of Rhythm, one of the bands who inspired this piece, performs their signature hit “JUMP CHILDREN”.
Roz Cron (center), the first white member of The International Sweethearts of Rhythm, tells a story of being taken in by a black family while on tour in the south.
An article with an overview of the history of The International Sweethearts of Rhythm.
An opera singer in a former life, Nat now enjoys creating works for others to perform. She is the book-writer for Sweethearts of Swing, a new “swingsical” featuring an historic all-female swing band (Eugene O’Neill NMTC: 2014 semi-finalist; Aurora Fox Theater: 2014 staged reading; Lark Play Development Center: currently in development). Her full-length plays The Innkeeper and Breaking Pairs have both had staged readings produced in NYC. This summer, she enjoyed traveling to Montreal on her motorcycle for a workshop of her short play, In Transit. Natalie is also the cofounder of Lather, Rinse, Repeat: A Playwrights’ Collective. When she's not writing, Nat is teaching voice and sight-singing to up-and-coming Broadway performers.
Kat has worked as a pianist/keyboardist on IN THE HEIGHTS, BRING IT ON, and THE BOOK OF MORMON on Broadway, and on NBC’s SMASH. She has music directed, arranged, and orchestrated numerous musicals in development for NYMF, Fringe, and other festivals and workshops. She is the composer-lyricist and arranger for musical in development SWEETHEARTS OF SWING with collaborator Natalie Wilson, and is writing a book about Broadway music for Rowman and Littlefield’s Listener’s Companion series. Kat is currently based in Seattle, where she is the Associate Music Supervisor for The 5th Avenue Theatre.