Asheville Performing Arts Academy students Cory, Hogan, Ceili, and Ellie at the 52nd Street Project in NYC
New York, NY– Four students from the Asheville Performing Arts Academy spend a week in New York City for the iTheatrics summer workshop. The audition-only theatre camp gave students Ellie Hewitt-Corzine, Hogan McLamb, Cory Silver, and Ceili Taft the opportunity to workshop MARY POPPINS JR. and perform this never-before-scene production for audiences, Friday, July 10th. The audience included Freddie and Myrna Gershon with the 2015 class of Freddie G Broadway Experience award-winning teachers. Freddie Gershon is the CEO Chairman of Music Theatre International and Co-Chairman of the Society of European Stage Authors and Composers. Heather Gallagher, owner and director of the Asheville Performing Arts Academy, also attended and is a member of the very first class of Freddie G Broadway Experience award-winners. Heather received the award in 2010, the same year the Arts Academy won the top honor of Broadway Junior Spirit at the Junior Theater Festival in Atlanta, Georgia. Parents and core faculty members joined Heather and the four students for the week in NYC.
Cory and Ellie received the opportunity to attend this iTheatrics camp through their All-Star performances Captain Hook and Wendy in the Asheville Performing Arts Academy’s performance of PETER PAN JR. at the 2015 Junior Theater Festival. Ceili and Hogan applied for the workshop through an audition process that included sending in video footage. Ceili and Hogan received recognition as All-Star performers at the 2014 Junior Theater Festival for their roles as Iago and Aladdin in ALADDIN JR. Ceili and Hogan went to NYC last summer to workshop MADAGASCAR JR. through iTheatrics. The Asheville Performing Arts Academy received the honor of Excellence in Ensemble at the Junior Theater Festival in both 2014 and 2015.
Ceili (and behind her, Ellie) playing in Central Park, NYC
In addition to spending their days working with theatre professionals, Ellie, Hogan, Cory, and Ceili made time for exploring the city, eating at Ellen’s Stardust Diner, seeing Broadway shows, and playing in Central Park. Between the parents, staff, and students on the trip, over ten different Broadway shows were seen, including SOMETHING ROTTEN, THE LION KING, LES MISERABLES, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, and the 2015 Tony Award Winner for Best Musical, FUN HOME. Everyone on the trip had the opportunity to branch out on new adventures, from Kylee Rose visiting the Bronx Zoo to Heather meeting the incredible Bernadette Peters!
This iTheatrics summer workshop took place at the NYC 52nd Street Project, which houses a community-based arts organization by the same name, created to match inner city kids to professional theatre artists to create original theatre. The Friday iTheatrics workshop production of Disney and Cameron Mackintosh’s MARY POPPINS JR. took place in the 52nd Street Project Five Angels Black Box Theater. The theater is named in memory of five people who have passed on who were all enthusiastic supporters of the Project, the theater and/or the children of New York City: Laurie Beechman, Ron Black, Bill Foeller, Tom Gardner and Rusty Magee.
Asheville Performing Arts Academy instructors Jacob Walas and Kylee Rose Frye accompany students Ellie and Ceili to AN AMERICAN IN PARIS on Broadway.
MARY POPPINS JR. is a musical based on the stories of P. L. Travers and the Walt Disney Film. Book by Julian Fellows. Original music and lyrics by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman. New songs and additional music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. Co-Created by Cameron Mackintosh.
The original Broadway and London production of MARY POPPINS was produced by Cameron Mackintosh and Thomas Schumacher. Co-Choreographer, Stephen Meor. Lighting design, Howard Harrison. Scenic and costume design, Bob Crowley. Co-Direction and Choreography, Matthew Borne. Directed by Richard Eyre.
Asheville Performing Arts Academy instructor, Kylee Rose Frye, with students Ceili and Ellie at AN AMERICAN IN PARIS on Broadway.
The creative team for this production of MARY POPPINS JR. included Director Marty Johnson and Music Director Kristen Singer. Choreographer, Dominick Sannelli. Stage management, Jakob W. Plummer. iTheatrics interns, Nick Libretti, Daisy Rudin, and Jasmine Sarwar. Observing teacher, Spencer Lau.
iTheatrics Staff: Timothy Allen McDonald, Marty Johnson, Susan Fuller, Steven G. Kennedy, Lindsay Weiner Lupi, Cynthia Ripley, Jacob W. Plummer, Rob Rokicki, Laura Jo Schuster, and Vichet Chum. The creative team and several members of the iTheatrics Staff were also present for the Friday performances.
Ceili, Cory, and Ellie all attend local elementary schools and are members of the Preparatory Academy Training Program at the Asheville Performing Arts Academy. Members of the Prep Academy take dance and acting classes in addition to rehearsing in community shows at the Academy. This fall, intermediate prep students will also have the opportunity to take music classes with Lenora Thom, music director at the Asheville Performing Arts Academy.
Asheville Performing Arts Academy students Cory, Hogan, Ceili, and Ellie at 52nd Street Project for iTheatrics Summer Camp Broadway Workshop of MARY POPPINS JR.
Hogan, a student at the Buncombe County Early College, is a member of the Academy Training Program at the Asheville Performing Arts Academy. Academy students take acting, dance, music, and technical theatre classes. In addition to often participating in APAA community shows, students in the Academy Training Program also participate in an exclusive Academy-only production. Hogan is also an intern for Summer Camps at the Asheville Performing Arts Academy.
Marty Johnson is scheduled to visit Asheville next month to watch the Asheville Performing Arts Academy’s world premiere production of PETER PAN JR., based on the 1954 Broadway Production with Mary Martin.
All of the summer and fall programs at the Asheville Performing Arts Academy are currently open for enrollment, including the Creative Arts Preschool, the Drake School of Irish Dance, Youth and Children’s Theatre, the Prep Academy, and the Academy Training Program. Our community shows for 2015-2016 are JUNGLE BOOK KIDS!, INTO THE WOODS JR., and THE LION KING JR. For more information, contact the Asheville Performing Arts Academy.