From the Paper Mill Playhouse:
Paper Mill Playhouse, recipient of the 2016 Tony Award for Regional Theatre, will be holding auditions for students to be a part of the theater’s prestigious Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory for 2018. Students who earn coveted spots in the Senior (ages 15-18), Junior Plus (ages 13-14), and Junior companies (ages 10-12) are directed and choreographed by Paper Mill Playhouse’s professional artistic staff in a fully produced, original concert at Montclair State University titled “New Voices of 2018: Sea to Shining Sea!” The concert is the culmination of the five-week program. Also appearing will be numerous winners and nominees of the 2018 Paper Mill Playhouse Rising Star Awards presented by the Investors Foundation, who win scholarships to attend the Conservatory. The Summer Musical Theater Conservatory and New Voices are generously supported by the Investors Foundation.
The Paper Mill Playhouse Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory is a program of rigorous study allowing students to enhance their individual performance potential while developing a broad base of theater experience and knowledge. Students participate in intensive classes including musical theater performance, acting, dance, private voice lessons, and improvisation, while also attending guest workshops led by professional actors, directors, and casting agents. The final weeks are devoted to rehearsals for the annual New Voices Concert. The Conservatory offers the unique opportunity for gifted and talented young performers to work at their own level and challenge themselves to achieve new goals and learn new skills. Key to the curriculum is the development of self-discipline, respect, and a commitment to excellence that will serve these young artists throughout their lives.
Students can also audition for the theater’s August Intensive Program. This four-week program allows performers between the ages of 10 and 16 to build individual technique and learn about themselves as performers, explore their own abilities, and refine their skills. Like the July Conservatory, admission to the August Intensive is by audition only. Intensive students do not perform in the New Voices Concert; rather, the Intensive classes prepare a musical theater showcase for family and friends. The focus of this program is on strengthening skills and building self-confidence in a non-competitive environment. Accepted students are placed in one of two sessions according to age. The small class size in each session allows for individual attention and instruction from the faculty.
“From the first day of class all the way through opening night of New Voices, we require our students to rise to the demands of this rigorous program,” stated Lisa Cooney, Paper Mill Playhouse Director of Education. “We ask them to work harder than they ever have before as young performers, and we strive to build an incredible ensemble company, while each student hones their own individual performance skills. Our faculty pushes the students to believe in themselves as professional artists and treats them as such. We find summer after summer that our students meet our expectations and more. When they move on to college or the professional world, they are ready for the challenges they’ll face, and time and again they thrive and ultimately live their dream of being a professional performer. It’s gratifying when they make a name or themselves on Broadway or in Hollywood, but even if they do not, the skills they learn and the work ethic they develop will serve them in any field.”
“Paper Mill Playhouse’s Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory and August Intensive are some of the finest programs for musical theater in the United States,” stated Mark S. Hoebee, Paper Mill’s Producing Artistic Director. “It is amazing to see these young performers learn and grow into professional artists with a culminating performance produced by leading industry professionals.”
Noted Broadway talent agents and casting director flock to New Voices every summer. Victoria Kress, Abrams Artists Youth Theatrical Agent states, “(I’m always) super excited to head to Paper Mill Playhouse for their New Voices show! Having trained some amazing performers, I know this night will prove to be no different! It’s one of my best scouting fields trips of every summer.” Nora Brennan, casting director for Matilda and Billy Elliot, agrees, “The kids were great, the show was fun and entertaining, and the material was tailored so that each child shone. Well done!” Paper Mill’s professional casting partner, Telsey + Company, attends annually and often offers workshops to our advanced students. Andrew Femenella of the Telsey + Co. Musical Theatre Department shared, “Congratulations on the amazing success of this concert. We attended and were blown away by all the young talent up on the stage.”
Dozens of students from Paper Mill Playhouse’s Conservatory have gone on to appear in numerous Broadway productions, film, television, and regional theater. Notable Conservatory Alumni include:
Anne Hathaway – Twelfth Night, Film: Les Misérables (2013 Academy Award Winner), Rachel Getting Married (2009 Academy Award & Golden Globe nominee), Get Smart, Brokeback Mountain, The Devil Wears Prada, & Disney’s The Princess Diaries
Laura Benanti – Broadway: She Loves Me, Gypsy (2008 Tony Award winner), Into the Woods, The Wedding Singer, Swing!
Jelani Remy – Broadway: Disney’s The Lion King (Simba)
Julia Knitel – Broadway: Beautiful: the Carole King Musical (u/s Carole King); Bye Bye Birdie
Robert McClure – Broadway: Something Rotten, Honeymoon in Vegas, Chaplin, Avenue Q
Shanice Williams- NBC’s The Wiz Live!
Joshua Dela Cruz – Broadway’s Disney’s Aladdin (Aladdin Understudy)
Ali Stroker – Broadway: Spring Awakening, Oxygen’s The Glee Project: Season 2; Paper Mill’s 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Olive Ostrovsky)
Nikki M. James – Broadway: Les Misérables, Book of Mormon (2011 Tony Award winner), All Shook Up
Hunter Kovacs: Radio City Christmas Spectacular
Avery Espiritu: Broadway: The King and I
James Ignacio – Broadway: The King and I
Alex Drier – Broadway: Finding Neverland, Assembled Parties
Daisy Hobbs – Broadway: Disney’s Aladdin
Matthew Scott – Broadway: Jersey Boys, A Catered Affair (Ralph), Sondheim on Sondheim
Collin Kelly-Sordelet – Broadway: The Last Ship (Young Gideon)
Jared Gertner – 2014 Olivier Award nominee West End, Broadway & National Tour of The Book Of Mormon (Elder Cunningham)
Veronica J. Kuehn – Broadway: Mamma Mia!, Xanadu; Off Broadway: Avenue Q
Neil McCaffrey – Broadway: Mary Poppins (Michael Banks), Bye, Bye Birdie (Randolph Macafee), Billy Elliot (Michael)
Monette McKay – Broadway: Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark, Memphis, Mamma Mia!
Constantine Rousouli – Broadway: Hairspray (Link), Ghost the Musical, Wicked
Jonathan Schwartz – Broadway’s Disney’s Aladdin (Omar)
Elizabeth Egan Gillies – Nickelodeon’s Victorious; Broadway: 13! The Musical
Lael Van Keuran – Broadway: Sister Act
Matt Ban – Broadway: Rock of Ages (Dennis)
To request more information or to schedule an audition appointment, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please visit the Paper Mill Playhouse website for audition guidelines and other important information.
PAPER MILL PLAYHOUSE, a not-for-profit arts organization under the direction of Mark S. Hoebee (Producing Artistic Director) and Todd Schmidt (Managing Director) and recipient of the 2016 Regional Theatre Tony Award, is one of the country’s leading regional theaters. Paper Mill Playhouse programs are made possible by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Paper Mill Playhouse is a member of the National Alliance for Musical Theatre, the Council of Stock Theatres, and the New Jersey Theatre Alliance.