Tony Spinosa Is Guest Choreographer For VYT's NEWSIES

Tony Spinosa Is Guest Choreographer For VYT's NEWSIESCelebrated stage impresario, Tony Spinosa, has spent the past four weeks in the Valley, training nearly forty local performers to dance in Valley Youth Theatre's (VYT) upcoming production of, Newsies, running August 10 through August 26, at the Herberger Theater Center. The production is presented by Valley Toyota Dealers and sponsored in part by Edward Jones. It is directed by VYT's Producing Artistic Director of 22 years, Bobb Cooper.

"I met Bobb Cooper nineteen years ago, when I was with the national touring company of Peter Pan, in San Francisco," said Spinosa. "I was shocked when I learned he was there to consider renting our Broadway and national touring set for a show - put on by teenagers! Then, a year later, when he hired me to choreograph West Side Story, I quickly learned how dedicated Bobb is to the superior quality of training his performers receive and the extremely high quality of production they provide to Phoenix Theatre-goers. Both are unprecedented across the country, and I've worked with many American youth theatres. The experience VYT provides is truly unparalleled."

Spinosa has spent most of his recent time in Phoenix training VYT's cast how to dance, in a boot camp setting. "That's exciting for me," he stated, "That's why I come back every few years. It's an excellent experience for these young people, even if they don't go into the arts as a career. They are learning discipline and teamwork, while building their confidence and self-esteem."

Spinosa served as Resident Director of the 2010 Tony Award winning Revival of La Cage aux Folles, starring Douglas Hodge and Kelsey Grammer, consequently working with Harvey Fierstein, Christopher Sieber and George Hamilton for the National Tour. He has received many awards, including the 2001 AriZoni Award for his choreography of VYT's West Side Story and the 2006 Arizona STAR Award for VYT's production of CATS. Tony has directed and/or choreographed dramas, comedies and musicals on both coasts, most noted for his focus on crafting new woks and remounting of theatre classics.

Tickets for Newsies range from $16.50 to $35.50 and can be purchased via telephone at 602.252.8497 or online, for an additional fee, at www.HerbergerTheater.org.

Founded in 1989, Valley Youth Theatre (VYT) is a professional-quality theatre company dedicated to helping young people achieve their full potential through meaningful engagement, education and excellence in the performing arts. By "building character from characters," VYT empowers kids of all ages and backgrounds to learn and grow as individuals, performers and leaders. Over the past five seasons alone, the organization has positively impacted more than 200,000 children and their families through public and school performances, workshops and youth development programs.

Winner of more than four dozen National Youth Arts awards, voted "Best Live Theater" on azcentral.com, heralded as "Best Place to Take a Bow" by Phoenix Magazine, and rated one of the "Top Ten Places to Become a Future Star" by the Arizona Republic, VYT produces six mainstage shows each season, including two at the Herberger Theater Center.

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