The Seed Group

Committed to the production and development of new works and new audiences


Current Projects

Members of The Seed Group

ARI EDELSON is a director and producer whose directing credits span across multiple continents and forms. Recent directing credits include: Laughter on the 23rd Floor (with Judge Reinhold at Arkansas Rep), Primating (Arkansas Rep), Building the Wall (New World Stages), Vengeance (Cherry Lane Theatre), Expats (The New Group), The Attic (Play Company), The Atheist (Theatre 503, London), Blood Wedding, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Sexual Perversity in Chicago (Theatre Project Tokyo), True West and Tape (Tokyo Globe), The Rape of Lucretia (ENO), Little Black Dress (Boston Playwrights, NYC), Mauritius (Dorset Theatre Festival), The Scariest (45 Bleecker). Ari founded and serves as Artistic Director of the Orchard Project, which has to date developed more than 400 productions that have gone on to Broadway, the West End, and regional theaters around the United States and the world. He has served on the artistic staff of London’s Old Vic Theater, The English National Opera, and Theatre Project Tokyo, served as director on attachment at New Dramatists and The National Theatre Studio, as a Directing Fellow of the Drama League of New York, and has taught at Northwestern University, Fordham University and in Japan. Education: Yale University and Royal Scottish Conservatoire.

SAMANTHA LAZARUS LEVIN is an Emmy-winning digital producer with extensive experience across television, theater, digital and audio. As a co-founder and executive producer of Ode to Joy, she helped to conceive and execute The Met Unframed and The Met Replica which garnered millions of views, were seen in almost every country in the world and completely changed the way that museums integrated technology. Ode’s next projects include an interactive gaming orchestra premiering at BAM in 2025 and numerous scripted projects currently in development. She chairs the board of The Orchard Project, a group dedicated to developing the next generation of writers and produces Broadway shows including the upcoming revival of The Wiz. She has worked for content creators big and small – always focused on how to best tell the story at hand. She has helped conceive and produce podcasts for Dr. Oz, What to Expect and most recently Backstage (where she oversaw a 400% increase in listenership over the course of 12 months.) Sam loves the idea of using playwrights to help bring our American stories to life to try to remember who we are.

RYAN COTTON & MICHAEL BASKOWSKI are thrilled to be teaming with such a fabulous group to ‘Ease on Down the Road.’ Ryan has spent nearly his entire career as a private investor, helping build numerous iconic companies and brands. He holds an AB from Princeton University and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Michael has been in the performing arts his entire career and has appeared in several iconic musicals including Beauty & The Beast, Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, and Elf. Michael holds a BFA from the Hartt School of Music.

JOSEPH SAVAGE: As a retired Boston (mostly) lawyer devoid of performing talent I’m always on the lookout for other ways to participate in top quality,entertaining, theatrical projects. The Wiz fits the bill (as did some of the other projects I’ve been part of such as Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Vanya, Sonya and Masha and Spike)! The Wiz team is bringing the energy to one of the all time great, fun shows. Couldn’t be happier to be on board with this group. Looking forward to going down this road together. 

CARALYN SPECTOR has been working in the corporate and nonprofit sectors for 30+ years in entertainment, nonprofit arts, government, philanthropy, and academia. Caralyn is the founder of Philly Leadership Lab and the senior managing associate for The ROZ Group. Ms. Spector was recently the interim Executive Director for the Philadelphia Cultural Fund and a Creative Communities program officer for the William Penn Foundation. During the Obama Administration, she served as the Arts Policy Advisor to the Senior Deputy Chair and the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. Ms. Spector also serves on the board of Fresh Artists, CultureWorks, and the Philadelphia Cultural Fund. Caralyn received her B.A. from Barnard College and her M.A. in Creative Leadership from the Minneapolis College of Art & Design. 


Selected Press and Reviews

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    The play still emerges as powerful political theater [and] never feels static, thanks to Ari Edelson’s taut staging and the gripping performances.


    Frank Sheck, Hollywood Reporter

    Review of "Building The Wall"
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    Gripping storytelling, and powerful performances ... under director Ari Edelson’s well-measured direction.


    Frank Rizzo, Variety

    Review of "Building the Wall"

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