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Chicago College Break Thru Program Awards Over $500,000 to Performing Arts Students

Chicago College Break Thru Program Awards Over $500,000 to Performing Arts Students

The College Break Thru program completed its inaugural year on Friday, June 29th when it awarded over $500,000 in scholarships to students. The scholarships were announced by founder David Petro, Marjory Stoneman Douglas drama teacher Melody Herzfeld and American Musical and Dramatic Academy faculty member Chrissy Whitehead. The evening also included an appearance by Yael Silver, Tony Award-winning producer.

Founded by David Petro, a Disney, Nickelodeon and Broadway Casting Director and former Broadway performer, Broadway Break Thru provides nationwide opportunities to young, aspiring artists through performing arts summer camps, pre-college programs, after school programs and weekend workshops.

College Break Thru is the newest program and features 5-day intensive designed for incoming high school freshmen to seniors, who have a strong interest in musical theatre, dance, voice and acting. By accepting only seventy-five of the nation's elite high school performing artists, CBT can provide unprecedented access to the world's top colleges and instructors, high caliber classes and exclusive auditions.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas student Sawyer Garrity is the first recipient of the Melody Herzfeld Scholarship for CBT which provided admission to the 2018 CBT program, round trip airfare, and full boarding/meal plan (worth $2500).

"Theater is more than performing arts and entertainment. It's leadership training and life development", Petro explains. "The Melody Herzfeld College Break Thru scholarship was created to support performing arts students who exemplify the leadership and courage seen by Sawyer and her fellow Parkland, Florida Stoneman Douglas theater students."

University faculty members from the following institutions participated in College Break Thru : American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA), Ball State, The Boston Conservatory at Berklee, CAP 21, Carnegie Mellon, Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Columbia College, DePaul University, Emerson College, Indiana University, The Juilliard School, Northwestern University, the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance, NYU, Pace University, Point Park University, Roosevelt University's Chicago College of Performing Arts, Texas State, Yale School of Drama, Stewart Talent Agency, and Second City Chicago.

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Photo Credit: Melody Herzfeld by Jennifer Broski

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