Through in-school residencies, workshops, and large-scale projects Rising Star Project offers students the chance to develop professional skills through the process of producing, performing, and creating musical theater.
In January, Rising Star Project made frontpage news with our residencies at Kentridge High School and Kent-Meridian High School.
Beyond being entirely student performed, the 2018/19 Rising Star Project production of West Side Story will be run by a student technical crew and supported by a team of students who have taken on roles in the marketing, development, producing, creative and casting departments. All participants are trained and mentored by dedicated theater professionals at The 5th Avenue Theatre.
Students interested in joining the Rising Star Project Dance Corps should:
Rising Star Project is an educational program offered tuition-free to Washington State students. Please note that participants are responsible for expenses associated with day-to-day transportation and meals.
Rising Star Project is made possible by a generous grant from The Sheri and Les Biller Family Foundation and with additional support from The Herman and Faye Sarkowsky Charitable Foundation, Susie and Phil Stoller, The Boeing Company, Washington State Arts Commission, National Endowment for the Arts, GM Nameplate, Jean K. Lafromboise Foundation, Nichols Foundation, and Promotion Arts (in-kind).
This program is available to all Washington State students ages 14-19. Eligible participants are within this age range for the majority of the project timeline.
A professional musical would not be possible if not for dedicated teams who cast, produce, secure funding for, and market the production.
THE PRODUCING TEAM is mentored by the Casting Associate, Associate Production Manager, and Company Manager, Projects include facilitating general auditions and casting, producing the Rising Star Project cabaret fundraiser, and attending to the needs of the Rising Star Project cast and company, Strong candidates have a strong interest in the theater industry or business (thespians, FBLA), are good collaborators, have leadership experience (student government, team athletics), and are comfortable working under deadlines.
THE DEVELOPMENT TEAM is mentored by members of the theater’s Development department and is responsible for raising funds for the Rising Star Project production. This team will set a fundraising goal and then create and execute various campaigns to reach their goal. Strong candidates are interested in professional networking and Arts advocacy, are involved in fundraising and service clubs (Key Club, ASB), and are passionate about the Arts and its impact on our community.
THE MARKETING + COMMUNICATIONS TEAM is mentored by the Senior Marketing Manager and the PR & Communication Manager—with opportunities to shadow graphic designers and production photographers. Projects include writing press releases, designing marketing, and coordinating social media campaigns. Strong candidates are interested in marketing and advertising careers, are involved in marketing clubs (DECA), and are strong writers or have graphic design, photography, and digital video production skills. Specific roles on this team include: Production Photographer, Graphic Designer
Behind the scenes, professional musicals require the technical expertise of dedicated craftspeople who take on the additional role of mentoring Rising Star Project participants.
HAIR & MAKEUP TEAM will learn essential skills and industry best practices for hair, wigs and makeup. In addition, Hair & Makeup students will put wigs and makeup on actors and perform changes during performances.
COSTUMES & WARDROBE TEAM will learn how to fit costumes on actors, alter pieces and “rig” them for quick changes as well as have the opportunity to analyze costume designs and learn about the design process. Students will also iron and prep costumes for the show, assist with quick changes, and “run” the wardrobe aspects of the show backstage during performances.
THE STAGE CREW will learn industry safety standards and best practices need to run all technical aspects of a professional musical. Specific roles on this team include: Deck Carpenter, Props, Light Board Operator, Electrics, Automation, Flyrail, Sound
THE CAST will be mentored primarily by theater professionals working on the Rising Star Project creative team—with opportunities to work with members of the professional cast of West Side Story. General auditions for student performers will take place in July 2018 and January 2019. Strong candidates will demonstrate commitment to the project schedule and a demonstrated passion for collaboration.
THE ORCHESTRA will be mentored by musicians who play for the professional production of West Side Story. Students will rehearse and perform the score for the Rising Star Project production. Ideal candidates are interested in professional music careers, have experience playing in advanced ensembles, and have an interest in learning diverse musical styles. Musicians should submit a complete application. Strong candidates will be invited to also submit a video audition or to audition in person.
The West Side Story orchestra will include: piccolo, flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, oboe, English horn, all saxophones, trumpet, trombone, bass trombone, violin, keyboard, percussion (mallets), drum set, bass, and guitar.
THE CREATIVE TEAM will by mentored by members of the Rising Star Project creative team. Strong candidates will have specific interest in pursuing a career in their respective field as well as developed knowledge and expertise, and demonstrated experience in a leadership position. Interested students will apply for one of the following roles: Choreography, Directing, Music Direction
STAGE MANAGEMENT TEAM will be mentored by a professional 5th Avenue stage management team and will be responsible for rehearsal preparation, coordinating rehearsals, running technical rehearsals, and overseeing technical aspects of performances. Ideal candidates are passionate about being organized, experienced leaders, detail-oriented, and interested in learning one of the most crucial roles of putting on a show.
The Rising Star Project uses the resources and professional knowledge that exist at The 5th Avenue Theatre to help every young person achieve a fulfilling career, a stronger sense of self, and confidence in their ability to inspire positive change in the world.
Within this mission, we endeavor to:
Workshops for High School Students
Especially for high school students with an interest in musical theater, these workshops give students the opportunity to create the characters, sing the songs, learn the choreography, and meet with the cast and crew for the productions on our stage. At each workshop, the participants enjoy a pizza** party, see the show, and attend a talkback with the cast after the evening's performance--all for only $25! *
FRIDAYS AT THE 5TH - Come From Away
People are the Story
With Kendra Kassebaum
October 19, 2018
4:30 PM – 10:00 PM
4:00 PM Check-In
For High School Students (ages 14-18)
September 11, 2001 is branded forever as a horrific date in United States history. Come From Away is a piece of theater, born not out of that horror, but out of the humanity it inspired in a small Canadian town. Real people rose to meet the needs of real people, in a spirit of kindness and community. 5th Avenue Theatre star, Kendra Kassebaum (Mamma Mia, Ragtime) was a member of the original Come From Away Broadway cast and knows firsthand what it means to bring a moment in history to life using the stories of the people who experienced it. Join Kendra to explore how to develop a stage character based on an actual person. Also, meet Mo Chapman, The 5th’s Production Logisitics Coordinator, who was a real “come from away” stranded in Gander that day and lived the story you will see on stage.
ALL are welcome. No experience is necessary—just a willingness to jump in and try something new! Learn to develop a character, enjoy a pizza dinner, see the show and meet the cast--all for only $25! Register here.
Mark your calendar for the 18/19 season!
Come From Away: October 19, 2018
Annie: December 7, 2018
Rock of Ages: February 15, 2019
Marie: A New Musical: March 29, 2019
Urinetown: April 19, 2019
West Side Story: June 14, 2019
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Showing Your Story
With Kellie Martin
We use body language to communicate every day. But great actors intentionally use their bodies and facial expressions to create strong characters, tell the story, and draw the audience into their world. In this fun and engaging workshop, students will work together and learn techniques to use body language, facial expression, and sign language to communicate a story. This workshop was presented with ASL interpretation.
Ride the Cyclone
Create the world, and sing it!
With cast member Lillian Castillo
In the weirdly wonderful, West Coast premiere of the musical Ride the Cyclone, six teenagers face their untimely demise when the train on the roller coaster they are riding unexpectedly derails. Stuck in a strange, carnival-like purgatory, they are each given the opportunity to tell their story of a life interrupted. Set to a rock-pop score, the musical asks the question, what gives a life value? Join Lillian (Costance Blackwood in the production) and learn the wonderfully wacky songs featured in the show. Get to know this new musical and explore how each actor contributes to the world of the play in an ensemble cast.
Kiss Me, Kate
Kiss Me, Conflict!
with 5th Avenue favorite, David Quicksall
Join us for an enlightening Fridays at The 5th workshop and discover how the tumultuous relationship of Petruchio and Kate in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew is mirrored by Fred Graham and Lilli Vanessi in Cole Porter’s musical, Kiss Me, Kate. Both the musical Kiss Me, Kate and The Taming of the Shrew, the play that serves as the inspiration for the musical, deal with a conflict—a battle of the sexes. In both stories the principal characters act out a tension-filled romance full of passion, wit, cunning, and ultimately, love. Join us in a fun and exciting workshop taught by local Shakespearean actor and teacher, David Quicksall. Learn how to play the conflict in a scene in order to heighten the tension and drive the story. No experience is necessary, just come prepared to learn a little and laugh a lot.
Taking Direction/Taking Action
With Mamma Mia! Associate Director, Billie Wildrick
Constantin Stanislavski once said, “Acting is action.” Mamma Mia! is about characters taking action: action to create relationships, action to create family, action to connect to past and create future. Billie Wildrick, a popular and much loved performer on The 5th Avenue stage (Evelyn Nesbit, Ragtime; Babe, The Pajama Game) is also well known as a director, and has been Associate Director for our production of Mamma Mia!. As an actor herself, Billie can share unique insights from both sides of the creation process, helping students learn to embrace, rather than be intimidated by, a director’s vision. Using scenes from Mamma Mia!, students will discover how director and actor work together to bring action to the characters and relationships on stage.
Develop your skills and learn from professional musical theater artists in our Summer Musical Theater Classes. With offerings in dance, voice, audition skills, and even conducting, there is something for everyone and for all ages.
ONE MORE AMAZING CLASS IN OUR SUMMER LINE-UP! REGISTER NOW!
Landing the part: Audition Skills for High School Students ages 14-18
REGISTRATION EXTENDED THROUGH AUGUST 2nd!
Monday, August 6th, 4 PM-6 PM
The 5th Avenue Theatre
Taught by The 5th Avenue Theatre’s Associate Artistic Director Kelsey Thorgalsen
Get ready for your next audition! In this class, designed specifically for young performers, students will learn the essential skills for auditioning for musical theater. Students will understand how to prepare for an audition, what to expect in the audition room, what to do when they receive sides, and how to be honest and true in their performance in order to present their best selves. Each student should come prepared with a memorized 32 bar cut of an audition song for use in class. An accompanist will be provided. Taught by The 5th Avenue Theatre’s Associate Artistic Director, Kelsey Thorgalsen, this class will give young actors an inside view of the audition process.
Click here to download a registration form for Landing the Part. Please complete the form and return with your payment.
Gospel for Musical Theater!
July 30-31, 2018 Taught by Shaunyce Omar
This energetic and uplifting vocal master class exploreS the history and influence of gospel music in musical theater. In this two-part course students work with Seattle-based singer and actress, Shaunyce Omar, to examine how gospel music has influenced both musical theater and pop music; learn the power of ensemble singing; and discover how to adapt their own personal style to gospel singing.
Sing Out! Vocal Technique and Song Interpretation for Middle School Students
July 25, 4 PM-6 PM Taught by Jeannette d'Armand
How do musical theater artists present strong, character-driven performances through song? In this master class, students learn the fundamentals of singing--from breath support to articulation and diction. Students work on their own pre-selected songs to develop techniques for healthy vocal practice and strong performances.
Making Intentions Clear: Directing for Musical Theater
Tuesday, July 24, 2018Taught by Ruben Van Kempen
Communication is key when directing! In this class, the recipeint of The 5th Avenue Theatre Award for Outstanding Educator, Ruben Van Kempen, helped high school students learn the skills for guiding and inspiring actors in telling stories on stage, and in learning the craft of creating clear pictures and clear motivations. No Small Roles: Creating Memorable
No Small Roles: Creating Characters Through Movement and Play
Monday, July 23, 2018 Taught by Marisol Rosa-Shapiro
In this workshop, students explored the world of movement-based theater and character creation. Through movement analysis, play, embodiment, and an exploration of archetypes, students build skills, creating and recalling unique and delightful forms, from the body. The techniques nurtured in this workshop serve the actor in principal roles and chorus roles, alike.
Musical Theater Dance
July 16-19, 2018 Taught by Nikki Long
Designed for intermediate/advanced dancers interested in the different styles of musical theater dance. Classes will focus on building strength, technique, and choreography. Choreographer, Dancer and Instructor, Nikki Long will guide students through advanced techniques in ballet, tap, and jazz and incorporate choreography in a variety of dance styles.
Conducting for Musical Theater
A Master Class for ages 16-20
July 17, 2018 Taught by The 5th Avenue Theatre's Resident Music Supervisor Matt Perri
In this two hour workshop, participants will learn the skills and techniques of conducting for musical theater. Basic conducting concepts will be introduced with the goal of improving clarity and gaining tools for expressive conducting in a supportive and fun learning environment. Taught by the 5th’s Resident Music Supervisor, Matt Perri, this class will provide students the opportunity to put their skills to work and conduct a band of local professional musicians with selections from the musical theater repertoire.
Singing with Heart: Vocal Technique and Song Interpretation
July 9, 2018 Taught by Mary Jo Dugaw
Designed for intermediate/advanced singers, students learn vocal technique and song interpretation in a master class setting. From breath support to articulation and diction, students will develop the fundamentals for healthy vocal practice and strong performance. Using these vocal techniques, students will work on a pre-selected song to understand how text and musical structure work together and how to deliver honest, character-driven performances.
If you are a high school student with a strong interest in technical theater, then TECH TUESDAY is for you!
JOIN US FOR OUR EXPANDED TECH TUESDAY PROGRAM!
TUITION IS STILL $25.00*
At these workshops, you will learn skills, tour backstage, observe the various teams setting and adjusting cues at rehearsal, and meet working theater professionals and technicians. You will also enjoy a pizza party** and receive a ticket to a preview performance of the mainstage production which you observe in rehearsal.
Mark your calendars for our upcoming Tech Tuesday dates and take advantage of this unique opportunity to learn directly from the professionals, and by watching the detailed work done in technical rehearsals.
Tech Tuesday for the 2018/19 Season:
Annie: Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Rock of Ages: Tuesday, January 29, 2019
*Scholarships Available - Call 206-625-1418 for information.
** Pizza dinner options include traditional cheese and pepperoni pizza
Registration forms for each upcoming workshop will be posted four weeks prior to the Tech Tuesday event date!
Tech Tuesday: Sound and Signs
Tuesday, May 29, 2018
Sound and Signs – Two techniques for enhancing storytelling! Our “hands on“ workshop will examine the world of theater sound, with microphones of various types being examined for their best use practices. Discover how your school’s tools and resources can be used most effectively! And, along the way, meet people who use American Sign Language as a tool and resource for communicating story. You will also meet the Sound Designer of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
Tech Tuesday: Kiss Me, Kate
Tuesday, April 3, 2018
Ever wondered how those miraculously fast costume changes happen during a show? Join us as we examine the “quick change” in a hands-on workshop with wardrobe professionals! This practical and fun workshop will be followed by the unique opportunity to tour backstage, observe during technical rehearsal, and meet more working theater professionals and technicians.