LA'S NEXT GREAT STAGE STAR 2014 to Sing in the New Year at Sterling's Upstairs, 1/5-2/16

LA's Next Great Stage Star® 2014 sings in the New Year beginning Sunday, January 5 at Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal, the most critically acclaimed concert supper club in the greater Los Angeles area. The eighth anniversary presentation of the only musical theatre competition of its kind on the west coast, shines the spotlight on twenty undiscovered performers ranging in age between 18 and 28.

Subsequent Sunday competition dates will be held January 12, 19, 26; and February 9, with its Grand Finale on Sunday, February 16. The 2014 edition of LA's Next Great Stage Star® continues to be Executive Produced by Michael Sterling of Michael Sterling & Associates.

Los Angeles Arts philanthropist and performer Barbara Van Orden, associated with the event since 2012, serves as Co-Executive Producer. Writer/Performer Peter Welkin returns as Associate Producer along with James Lent who returns as Musical Director, and Bryan Blaskie as Alternate Musical Director. Jackie Evans rounds out the creative as Choreographer for her second year.


Selected through an audition process held in mid-December 2013 at LA's prestigious Van Nuys, CA-based Performing Arts Center which provides top training programs in the arts, and state of the art rehearsal rental facilities (, Stage Star 2014 competitors include: Jessica Apperson, Alexandra Arthur, Michael Byrne, Matthew Campanella, Cy Creamer, Sevan Dekmezian, Jordan Michelle DeLeon, Katrice Gavino, Kimberly Hessler, Brandon Hynum, Jade Johnson, Amanda Knight, Jennifer Kranz, Travis Leland, Daniella Painton, Kathleen Porter, Cameron Sczempka, Katherine Tracy, Adrienne Visnic, and Jared Andrew Warren.


2014 Stage Star Judges include: Musical Theatre & Theatrical Casting Directors: Michael Donovan, Peter Matyas, Jami Rudofsky , Michael Serna - Walt Disney Parks & Resorts; and Mark Simon of the Center Theatre Group at the Los Angeles Music Center.

Musical Theatre Producers, Writers, Directors & Choreographers: T.J. Dawson - Artistic Producer/Director - 3D Theatricals - Plummer Auditorium/Fullerton, CA; Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center; Redondo Beach, CA; David Galligan - LA Stage Alliance Lifetime Achievement Ovation Award; Director of S.T.A.G.E.(Southland Theatre Artists Goodwill Event) - 29 consecutive AIDS fundraising spectaculars 1984 - 2013 Director: Academy Award and Tony Award winner Rita Moreno; Director: Tony Award winner and 6-time Emmy Award winner Tyne Daly; Bruce Kimmel - President and CEO of Kritzerland Records and Creator of Kritizerland Pre­sents at Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal; Out of the Box Web Series for Broadway; Robert Marra - Director - Los Angeles, San Diego and U.S. Musical Theatre: The Spitfire Grill, Sweeney Todd, Closer Than Ever, Footloose, A Chorus Line, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Chess; Lee Martino - Choreographer/Director: Joel Hirschorn Award Outstanding Achievement in Musical Theatre; 3-Time Recipient of LA Drama Critics Circle Awards; 4-time Los Angeles Ovation Award winner; Director/Choreographer: When You Wish: The Story of Walt Disney; Michael Matthews - 2012 Ovation Award Winner as Best Director of a Musical; The Color Purple - Celebration Theatre/Hollywood; Dan Mojica - Assistant Director: Disney's Beauty and The Beast National and International Tours; Universal Studios City Walk Creative Director; Director/Sacramento Music Circus/The Producers; Rent/The Welk Theatre, Escondido; Calvin Remsberg - Premier Vocal Coach/Broadway Musical Theatre Star; Director/Bare...A Pop Rock Opera; Director/Sweeney Todd/Musical Theatre West/Long Beach; Into the Woods.; David F.M. Vaughn - Director: Legally Blonde The Musical - 3D Theatricals; Shrek The Musical - 3D Theatricals; Broadway Musical Theatre Star - Shrek The Musical U.S. National Tour. Producer: Colin Quinn: Long Story Short/Broadway 2010; Equity Theatre Agents: Anthony Boyer - Stage 9/DDO; Jodie Bowman - Brady, Brannon & Rich Agency; Steven Dry - Connor Ankrum & Associates; Sasha Passero - KazarIan Ruskin & Associates; and Dave Secor - Daniel Hoff Agency.


Sunday matinee competition times and dates are 11:15 am - 12:00 pm Brunch Seating's; followed by 12:00 - 2:30 pm Competitions January 5, 12, 19, 26 and February 9; with the Grand Finale taking place on February 16, 2014.


Attendance at LA's Next Great Stage Star® is by reservation only. For reservations, call the Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal 24 hour reservation line at (818) 754-8700. A $15 entertainment cover charge and a $10 drink and/or food minimum apply for attendance at the first five competitions. A $20 entertainment cover and a $10 drink and/or food minimum apply to the February 16 Finale.

Audience members are entitled to vote for their favorite performers at the first five competitions with their votes added to the overall scoring system by the judges. Audience members will also receive a complimentary raffle coupon for opening night tickets to select musicals featured in the 2014 season of the Pantages Theatre, the official theatre sponsor of LA's Next Great Stage Star® 2014 for the third consecutive year.

Located in the heart of Hollywood, the Pantages Theatre has become one of the greatest landmarks of Hollywood signifying both the glorious past and adventuresome future of the world's entertainment capital,


Contestants will compete at each competition with no eliminations until the Finale. The Finale will determine the selection of one winner and four finalists. The winner will receive a $1000 cash prize and a lucrative, paid headlining engagement at Sterling's Upstairs at Vitello's during 2011. Upon the winner's debut at Sterling's, he or she will also be provided with a luxurious VIP Suite by the Sheraton Universal Hotel and dinner for two in the hotel's signature Californias Restaurant. The Sheraton has extended the same such gift to Stage Star's first runner up. Known as the "Hotel of the Stars" for nearly 40 years, the Sheraton Universal blends four-star service with the history and glamour of an iconic Hollywood hotel. The Sheraton's participation marks the hotel's sixth year as a Gold Sponsor of LA's Next Great Stage Star®.

Additionally, the winner and top finalists will receive auditions with Silver Sponsors: Julia Flores of Julia Flores Casting for (McCoy/Rigby Entertainment at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts), Lewis Wilkenfeld - Artistic Director of Cabrillo Music Theatre at the Fred Kavli Theatre in the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza/Thousand Oaks, CA; and Steven Glaudini, Artistic Director of the Moonlight Amphitheater in Vista, CA.

As a direct result of LA's Next Great Stage Star®, more than 50 of the annual competition's overall 140 contestants (to date) have been cast in top regional theatre shows, Broadway national tours, Las Vegas productions, and network television shows; while 8 have already made their Broadway and Off-Broadway debuts. An average of 50 percent of "all" contestants in each year's edition of Stage Star are signed by the competition's musical theatre agent/judges.

Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal, located at 5303 Lankershim Boulevard, North Hollywood, CA 91601, is produced by Michael Sterling of Michael Sterling & Associates (MSA), the Studio City-based entertainment public relations company. Known for its creative menus of California chic, gastro pub cuisine, The Federal's creative California chic, gastro pub cuisine, coupled with its vintage 1926 interior fused with contemporary design sensibilities, is one of the most successful dining and entertainment destinations in Los Angeles.

Sterling's Upstairs is Executive Produced by Michael Sterling of Michael Sterling & Associates, the Studio City-based entertainment public relations company. Since 1980, Sterling has represented such stellar clients as Elizabeth Taylor, Lance Armstrong, Scott Hamilton, David Copperfield, Joan Collins, Alan Thicke, Carol Lawrence, David Brenner, Andy Gibb, and Robert Goulet. Aside from his celebrity clientele, Sterling has represented various national theatre and arena tours, Los Angeles theatre productions, Emmy Award-winning television specials, celebrity books, albums and CD's. Sterling is also a critically-acclaimed director of musical theatre in Los Angeles, and has produced various theatrical events and productions throughout southern California. From September, 2009 to the present, Mr. Sterling joined Broadway to become BWW TV's Los Angeles television producer and on air host for coverage of select red carpet theatre openings and theatrical events. In late May, 2010, Sterling, along with LA Stage Ovation-nominated actor/writer Paul Stroili, joined forces as co-creators, co-producers and co-hosts of the popular radio series State of the Arts presented by Breakdown Services and Performing Arts The entertaining and slightly irreverent global series is broadcast live each Thursday at 1:00 pm PST by the Network, and features celebrity interviews, arts reviews, and a Live Arts Calendar. State of the Arts and can be heard on all computers, iPhones and Android Phones and all other such mobile devices by downloading a complimentary LA Talk Radio "app" from the device's market. The series is also one iTunes most successful radio series.

Co-Executive Producer Barbara Van Orden has been a vital contributor to LA's Next Great Stage Star since 2012. Her multifac­eted career began in New York City where she became a leading magazine cover girl, which led to appearances in over 50 television commercials. Also, her innate talent as a singer/actress/comedienne beckoned her to open for show business icons such as Milton Berle, Don Rickles, Jack Benny and Tony Bennett. She not only performed in Playboy Clubs throughout the U.S., but at prestig­ious hotels in Las Vegas. To the latter, Frank Sinatra caught her act and invited her to open for him at the world renowned Persian Room at The Plaza Hotel in New York City. Barbara continues to perform her own concerts to sold-out audiences across the nation; and in 2013 performed in a concert version of Stephen Sondheim's Follies, as well as A Magical Night of Broadway with Joanne Worley, Shoshana Bean, and Rex Smith. Her Hollywood business career began with her own personal management firm for writers, producers and directors. In the firm's second year, she was asked by MCA/Universal's Chairman and CEO Lew Was­serman to form her own Production Company (Cinequest) at Universal Studios. As a result, she went on to produced many events for the American Film Institute Associates and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences which garnered great notoriety for her writing and producing skills. Highlights included An Evening with Jacques and Jean-Michel Cousteau; events for The Schepens Eye Institute (an affiliate of Harvard Medical School); and the CBS Television Network. She is a much sought after talk show guest; and, as a speaker, has lectured on business strategies and self-reinvention at leading universities coast to coast.

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