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School in the Spotlight High School Edition: Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts!

For followers of news out of BWW's Student Center, you'll know that based on user demand we're taking our commitment to arts education one step further with the launch of the BWW Student Center - High School Edition. This directory features upcoming show listings for more than 1500 high schools nationwide with more being added each week. Schools can register for 'enhanced' listings on the site - adding in photos, cast lists, videos, links and more. Productions that take advantage of this will receive highlights on our listing pages, extra editorial mentions and potential spotlight features.

And just like we do every Friday with our College Center, each week BWW will be selecting a high-school program and featuring it as our School in the Spotlight. Below you'll find our first Spotlight - High School Edition!

Today, we are thrilled to present a very special and unique program as our first Spotlight - High School Edition: The Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts! Located in Wheatley Heights (Huntington), New York, this nationally acclaimed summer arts day camp is entering its 45th year and continues to attract thousands of students aged 6 to 18 from New York City and the Tri-State Area each summer. Usdan's curriculum features more than 40 four and seven-week programs in music, dance, theater, visual arts, writing, nature & ecology, and chess. Many internationally-recognized names have honed their performance skills at Usdan including Natalie Portman, Mariah Carey, Seth Rudetsky, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Jordan Leeds, and playwright Michele Lowe, as well as other distinguished members of the Broadway and regional music, dance and theatre community including such ensembles as the Boston Pops and the New York City Ballet.

One of the new programs available for the next summer session (beginning June 25, 2012) is  'Summerstock', an offering of the Usdan's Theater Arts Department. 'Summerstock' is a selective, pre-professional course for accomplished actors in grades 11 and 12, who intend to major in theater in college. The program will include all areas of production under the guidance of leading Broadway directors, designers, and teaching artists. Students will also experience many performance opportunities with multiple productions performed in Usdan's theater, and off campus in Long Island and New York City venues as well. Registration for this program is now underway with an $75 'Early Bird Discount' available through December 12. For more information on registration or to learn more about the upcoming Open House in January, please click here.

In addition to 'Summerstock', Usdan also offers a wide range of theater programs for younger high school students . These programs are open to anyone with an interest in the arts. Students in these programs learn the craft and also enjoy performance opportunities in plays and musicals throughout the session.

To learn more about Usdan, please visit their website or 'like' the Usdan page on Facebook. To get a taste of what goes on at Usdan, you can also watch concerts of the 2011 summer session on their YouTube channel here!

Also, make sure to check out the photos below featuring special guest stars and students! And for even more photos, check out the school's Tumblr here

BWW extends a hearty congratulations to students and staff at the The Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts, and wish you much success in 2012!


Seth Rudetsky performing for students

Summer 2011: Broadway cast members perform a special Voices Of Broadway concert in Usdan's 1,000-seat McKinley Ampitheater. From left to right: Justin Greer (Anything Goes), Maia Wilson (The Book Of Mormon?), Madeleine Doherty (Sister Act) and Brian O'Brien (Chicago). With pianist Nate Buccieri. Photo by Lafiya Watson

2011 musical number. Photo by Lafiya Watson

Usdan theater students visited backstage with Bob Martin of The Drowsy Chaperone on Broadway. Photo by Kerry Discioarro

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