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5th Avenue Theatre to Welcome Over 70 Teens for SPAMALOT

After The 5th Avenue Theatre wraps up its professional production of Monty Python's Spamalot, the curtain will rise again for an all-student production, featuring more than 70 students from across Washington State. The Rising Star Project: Spamalot is not only a brilliant artistic collaboration between some of the area's most promising up-and-coming young talent, but an educational program unlike any other in the country.

Teen performers have the opportunity to rehearse with sets and costumes from the mainstage production as they learn the responsibilities of working in a professional theater. Meanwhile, students produce, develop, and market the student production under the mentorship of The 5th Avenue staff. The program is tuition free and open to all who wish to participate.

Through the Rising Star Project: Spamalot, students passionate about musical theater are able to gain first-hand experience in the process of staging a professional musical, and are given the opportunity to celebrate their cumulative experience in three public performances on the historic 5th Avenue mainstage. The Rising Star Project: Spamalot will be directed by Mathew Wright, with music supervision by Christopher D. Littlefield, music direction by Chris DiStefano, and choreography by Trina Mills with Chris Ranney conducting. These artists will draw from the original direction and staging of Josh Rhodes, and choreography of Lee Wilkins, who created The 5th Avenue's mainstage production of Monty Python's Spamalot.

This is Mathew Wright's third time directing the Rising Star Project, and his reflections on its impact say it best. "The students in the Rising Star Project are some of the most driven, passionate, and intelligent young people I've ever met," Wright said. "The growth they achieve over the course of this event goes so much further than learning a complicated dance step, how to fill a lyric with intention, or how to play a scene with life and drive-it's a kind of deep personal growth that is hard to describe but incredible to watch-and the repercussions of which they will still feel years down the line."

The Rising Star Project: Spamalot plays March 14 at 8:00 PM and March 15 at 2:00 PM and 8:00 PM at The 5th Avenue Theatre (1308 5th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101). Tickets (Students: $8 Adults: $25) may be purchased via The 5th Avenue Box Office (1308 5th Avenue, Downtown Seattle), 206-625-1900 or online at Use promo code "COW" to purchase $8 student tickets. The Rising Star Project: Spamalot will utilize the original set and costume design by Tim Hatley, lighting design by Tom Sturge and Christian DeAngelis, sound design by Kai Harada, hair and makeup design by Mary Pyanowski Jones.

"There is no other educational program like this in the country," said 5th Avenue Theatre Producing Director Bill Berry. "What makes this project truly unique is the opportunity young people have to be mentored by professional artists, staff and crew, at no cost to the student."

"We have been so impressed with the level of talent and professionalism these students have presented", added Director of Education Anya Rudnick. "Every teen at every level associated with this production had excelled above and beyond our expectations. The production they are assembling will certainly rival the professional production on The 5th Avenue stage in quality, in volume, and in sheer enthusiasm!"

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