National Cast of Students Perform in Broadway Junior Choreography DVDs
Educational theatre consultancy group iTheatrics selected an exceptional cast of 25 students, ages 10 to 16 and representing eight states, to perform in instructional choreography DVDs for soon-to-be-released Music Theatre International titles Doctor Dolittle JR., Finian's Rainbow JR., Disney's Winnie the Pooh KIDS and Disney's The Little Mermaid JR., it was announced today by Timothy Allen McDonald, founding CEO of iTheatrics. (The full cast list follows.) Choreographed by iTheatrics resident choreographer Steven G. Kennedy and guest choreographers Aubrey Lynch and James Brown III in collaboration with dance assistants Lauren Chapman and Kelby McIntyre- Martinez, the DVDs are designed to empower any teacher or community member to create innovative and compelling musical-theatre dance numbers. They will be used in the thousands of schools and performing arts centers across the country that license the musicals from the MTI Broadway Junior Collection®.
The students were selected for the choreography DVDs at the 2011 Junior Theater Festival (2011 JTF) in Atlanta, GA, presented by New York's iTheatrics and Atlanta's Theater of the Stars and sponsored by Music Theatre International and Disney Musicals. At the festival, the Broadway Junior scouts were on the lookout for outstanding students. 400 students were invited to audition for Kennedy, 68 were selected for the final call-back and ultimately 25 students were cast for the taping.
The Junior Theater Festival is the world's largest musical theater festival dedicated to groups working with elementary and middle school students. The 2011 Festival was held at the Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta, GA and brought together more than 2,100 students, teachers, and Broadway professionals to raise their voices in celebration of on-stage and backstage excellence in musical theatre.
The MTI Broadway Junior Collection® is MTI's special collection of musicals for younger performers, which includes "JR." titles, 60-minute musicals for middle-school performers; and "KIDS" titles, 30-minute musicals for elementary-school performers. MTI will release the DVDs as part of its ShowKit of resources for schools and educational musical theatre groups designed to help guide both cast and crew through a successful production. The ShowKit includes the choreography DVD, actor's scripts, fully orchestrated CDs to rehearse and accompany the cast, and a director's guide for teachers that includes an annotated script and step-by-step information on producing, casting, rehearsals and performance techniques as well as curriculum connections that tie important themes of the musical into classroom studies.
The students who traveled to New York from June 25 through July 2 to rehearse and film the choreography DVDs are:
Courtney Blanc, 11 years old, lives Redding, entering 7th grade at University Prep. Courtney was specially invited by iTheatrics to be part of the shoot.
Megan Taylor Callahan, 16 years old, lives in Vero Beach and is entering 11th grade at Vero Beach High School. Attended the 2011 JTF with Riverside Children's Theatre.
Faith Flanders, 13 years old, lives in Griffin, entering 8th grade at Rehoboth Road Middle School. Attended the 2011 JTF with Camelot Theatre
Madeline Stephens, 13 years old, lives in Griffin, entering 8th grade at Rehoboth Road Middle school. Attended the 2011 JTF with Camelot Theatre
Yohana Ansari-Thomas, 14 years old, lives in Oak Park, entering 9th grade at Oak Park and River Forest High School. Attended the 2011 JTF with Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School
Matthew Weidenbener, 16 years old, lives in Bloomington, entering 10th grade at Bloomington High School South. Attended the 2011 JTF with Stages Bloomington
Rebecca D'Antonio, 11 years old, lives in New Orleans (70131), entering 6th grade at St. Andrew the Apostle. Attended the 2011 JTF with Jefferson Performing Arts Society Theatre Kids
Olivia Worley, 13 years old, lives in New Orleans (70115), entering 8th grade at Metairie Park Country Day School and went to the 2011 JTF with Jefferson Performing Arts Society Theatre Kids
Gabriella Trentacoste, 12 years old, lives in Gretna, will enter 7th grade at Ursuline Academy. Attended the 2011 JTF with Jefferson Performing Arts Society Theatre Kids
Coldin Grundmeyer, 13 years old, lives in Belle Chasse, entering 8th grade at Holy Cross and NOCCAA, attended the 2011 JTF with Jefferson Performing Arts Society Theatre Kids
AaRon Richert, 10 years old, lives in New Orleans, entering 6th grade at Lusher Charter Middle School. Traveled to the 2011 JTF with Jefferson Performing Arts Society Theatre Kids
Joshua Myers, 12 years old, lives in Greenwood, entering 8th grade at Caddo Middle Magnet. Attended the 2011 JTF with the Academy of Children's Theatre
Chaislyn King, 10 years old, lives in Greenwell Springs, entering 5th grade at Victory Academy. Attended 2011 JTF with Central Community Theatre
Zachary Lejeune, 11 years old, lives in Denham Springs, entering 6th grade at Live Oak Middle School. Traveled to the 2011 JTF with Central Community Theatre
Ashton Denham, 13 years old, lives in Baker, entering 9th grade at Central High School. Attended 2011 JTF with Central Community Theatre
Parker Wilson, 10 years old, lives in Greenwell Springs, entering 5th grade at St. Thomas More Catholic School. Attended the 2011 JTF with Central Community Theatre
Lincoln Belford, 13 years old, lives in Mills River, entering 8th grade at Valley Springs Middle School. Attended the 2011 JTF with Asheville Arts Center in Asheville
Conner Dalton, 15 years, lives in Asheville, entering 10th grade at T.C. Roberson H.S. Attended the 2011 JTF with Asheville Arts Center
Connor Wolfe Lanier, 14 years old, lives in Asheville, entering 9th grade at Asheville High School. Attended the 2011 JTF with the Asheville Arts Center
Loren Brunson, 15 years old, lives in Oak Ridge, entering 10th grade at Grimsley High School. Attended the 2011 JTF with the Community Theatre Greensboro
Dylan Lambert, 13 years old, lives in Kingwood, entering 8th grade at St. Martha Catholic School. Attended the 2011 JTF with The Academy at Theatre Under the Stars
Matthew Smith, 14 years old, lives in Houston (77066), entering 9th grade at the High School of Performing Arts (HSPVA). Attended the 2011 JTF with The Academy at Theatre Under the Stars
Michelle Smith, 12 years old, lives in Houston (77066), entering 7th grade at Drew Academy. Attended the 2011 JTF at The Academy at Theatre Under the Stars
Miho Maeda, 12 years old, lives in Houston (77057), entering 7th grade at School of the Woods. Attended the 2011 JTF at The Academy at Theatre Under the Stars
Brandon Mayville, 14 years old, lives in League City, entering 9th grade at Clear Springs High School. Attended 2011 JTF with Bay Area Theatre and Voice Academy (BATAVA)
About iTheatrics - iTheatrics uses the transformative power of the arts to make the world a better place. The company adapts existing Broadway and West End musicals for students at all age levels-including elementary, middle, and high school-to perform. iTheatrics also creates a teacher's tool chest of resources which provides educators with enhancements such as choreography DVDs, accompaniment CDs, director's guides and curriculum connections. iTheatrics' clients include Music Theatre International, Disney Theatrical Group and McMillan/McGraw-Hill. iTheatrics also develops new musicals for family audiences such as The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley, The Phantom Tollbooth and Roald Dahl's James and the Giant Peach. iTheatrics' Junior Teaching Intensives provide professional development for teachers in the area of musical theater and its Junior Theater Academy provides young artists with an innovative outlet for developing their skills as performers and artists.
About Music Theatre International - Music Theatre International www.mtishows.com is one of the world's leading dramatic licensing agencies, protecting the rights and legacies of composers, lyricists and book writers. MTI's core business is issuing licenses, scripts, musical materials and dynamic theatrical resources to schools as well as amateur and professional theatres across the globe.
With over 300 classic and contemporary show titles from Broadway, Off-Broadway, and London's West End, MTI shows have been performed by 60,000 theatrical organizations in the US and in over 60 countries worldwide.
MTI is particularly dedicated to the idea of theatre as education and has created special collections for younger audiences. The Broadway Junior Collection® features 70-minute adaptations of major musicals designed for middle school children to perform; the KIDS Collection®, provides 30-minute musicals for performance by elementary school children; School Editions are musicals that have been annotated for performance by high school students; and the Theatre For Young Audiences Collection, 70-minute musicals designed for adults to perform for children.