Directors labs give students, public
opportunity to work with entertainment
For information about "Secret Garden" tickets and performances from June 12-27 in ATLAS, click here.
Directors labs in the news:
Broadway comes to Boulder: Big stars hosting free labs
Brittany Anas, Boulder Camera, March 9, 2009
CU's ATLAS Center Offers Students, Public, Opportunity to Work with Entertainment Industry Professionals
CU Press Release, March 4, 2009
Broadway in Boulder, CU's ATLAS Center to host workshops
Mark Collins, Boulder Camera, Feb. 27, 2009
The ATLAS Center for Arts, Media & Performance is recruiting students and members of the Boulder Community for a series of free master classes/directors labs taught by major entertainment industry professionals from Disney Theatricals, a Tony Award winning conductor and musical director, a Tony Award winning Broadway director, and Cirque du Soleil.
Each lab offers a great way for up to 16 CU students to get hands-on experience in various aspects of producing a musical and to network with people in the industry. In addition, each lab offers an opportunity for 30-60 people, either from the CU or Boulder community, to sit in on the sessions as observers on a first come, first served basis.
The sessions are a major collaboration between the ATLAS Center for Arts, Media and Performance, CU schools and departments, Broadway in Boulder Studios (which is located at the Dairy Center for the Arts in Boulder and is the Musical Theater Division of the Parlando School for the Arts), industry professionals and members of the Boulder community.
Broadway in Boulder Studios also is producing its first annual full-scale musical, Tony Award winning The Secret Garden, which will be performed in the ATLAS Black Box Studios in June. This will be an all-student production of the highest caliber with full orchestra and original Broadway costumes.
The concept of the director's labs is, in short sessions, to hand over the reins of technology arts education to a range of approaches from outside the classroom.
These particular labs were conceived by Broadway stars David Ayers (Wicked, Mamma Mia!, Fiddler on the Roof) and Angela Gaylor (La Cage Aux Folles, Hairspray and Oklahoma!) to complement their Secret Garden production and provide direct opportunity for University of Colorado students. Ayers and Gaylor are the founders of Broadway in Boulder Studios.
The director's labs grew out of conversations amongst film and broadcast professionals from Hollywood, CU faculty and students, and community members who expressed that graduating students with experience in the ATLAS Black Box Studio and Production Studio needed two things: the skills to work with new technologies and the ability to transform those skills into good storytelling.
1. Auditions and Casting
Monday, March 9th, 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Note: The 16 student participant seats are filled for this workshop.
CU students may contact cuatlas.@colorado.edu to get on our participant waiting list in the event of absences. Or, take one of the 30 to 60 observer seats available to the community on a first come, first served basis.
Disney Theatricals master class focusing on audition techniques, the casting process of Broadway shows, cast maintenance and training in long running shows. Students participating in the class should come dressed for an audition, ready to perform an audition piece and bring their picture and resume. Taught by Jennifer Rudin, director of casting and talent development for Disney Theatrical Productions in New York City.
2. Musical Directing/Conducting
Monday, March 16th, 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Led by Tony Award winning conductor and musical director Kevin Stites, this workshop focuses on solving conducting issues faced by musical directors, composers and conductors of musical theater.
Participants may include students in composition, conducting, musical direction, musical education, voice and others interested in musical theatrical production.
Voice students should bring sheet music to one or more musical theatre songs (preferably contrasting styles ie. legit, pop or up-tempo or ballad). An accompanist will be provided. All participating students (as opposed to "observers") should dress as if for an audition or job interview.
Using the cast of the Secret Garden as a choir, participants will be guided in techniques to solve problems a conductor faces, such as blending voices.
Stites' Tony Award winning credits include: Les Miserables, Sunset Boulevard, The Color Purple, Titanic, Nine, Fiddler on the Roof, Oklahoma, and A Tale of Two Cities.
3. Directing a Broadway Production
Monday, March 23rd, 12:30-4:30 p.m.
Thomas Kail, director of the Tony Award winning Broadway hit "In the Heights," will hold a question and answer discussion on:
- directing a large scale Broadway musical
- the journey a show takes from conception to production
- his own path to becoming a Tony-nominated director
- upcoming projects
For the hands-on portion of the workshop, he will share his directing and scene work insights by blocking and directing a scene from "The Secret Garden" (opening this June at the ATLAS Black Box Studio).
Directors (all levels: students through professional) will have the opportunity to bring in a short scene (two minutes) you are working on (invite your actors, of course) and then be coached by Kail on directing and blocking. Actors will have the opportunity to be coached on their monologues.
4. Multi-Media Design
Monday-Tuesday, March 30th and 31st, 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Led by representatives of Cirque du Soleil, the content of the labs is still evolving but will focus on:
- the history and contemporary use of projection in live performance
- some of the technical problems Cirque du Soleil has addressed
- specific projection challenges and possibilities
Many of these elements are featured in Cirque du Soleil's production of "LOVE" which is currently playing in Las Vegas.
We anticipate that Monday will be more presentational (question and answer); Tuesday will be more hands-on.
Students in these sessions may also participate in the full-scale production of Secret Garden, performing this June. (described in the 4th paragraph above)
Students from any discipline can participate in the labs by contacting the ATLAS Center for Arts, Media and Performance
at firstname.lastname@example.org. Workshops take place in the ATLAS Black Box Studio, lower level of the ATLAS building, level B2.
The hands-on master class enrollments and observation opportunities (16 CU students and 30-60 observers) are on a first-come, first served basis.
Broadway in Boulder Studios
Broadway in Boulder Studios is a division of the
Parlando School for the Arts -- the largest music
school in Boulder and now one of the largest in the state (for more information, click here).
Broadway in Boulder Studios is producing its first annual full-scale musical, Tony Award winning The Secret Garden, in the ATLAS Black Box Studios. This will be an all-student production of the highest caliber with full orchestra and original Broadway costumes.
This production will represent one of the largest collaborations of arts organizations in Colorado history. This collaboration also includes the Boulder and Longmont Youth Symphonies, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA), the University of Colorado at Boulder and the Flatirons Strings Academy.
The Black Box Studio
The 2,700-square-foot Black Box Studio, operated by the ATLAS Center for Arts, Media and Performance, provides a flexible performance environment for interdisciplinary artists to merge creativity with technology.
Features include a projection array, DMX controlled intelligent lighting, tension grid, surround sound, multi-track recording, midi-interface grand piano, Internet access, broadcast capability, sequencing software, videoconference support, and sprung dance floor. Support spaces include a green room, dressing rooms with showers/bathrooms and storage.
ATLAS is a University of Colorado at Boulder institute for undergraduate, graduate and outreach programs that supports technology education for people and programs that traditionally do not have access to equipment and resources.
The ATLAS Center for Arts, Media & Performance mentors people with distinct viewpoints, interests and relationships as they explore dynamic combinations of arts, technology, education and society.
Key Secret Garden Personnel
The show will be directed by Broadway stars David Ayers (Wicked, Mamma Mia!, Fiddler on the Roof) and
Angela Gaylor (La Cage Aux Folles, Hairspray and Oklahoma!). Ayers and Gaylor are the founders
of Broadway in Boulder Studios, a conservatory-based musical theater program consisting of classes
and voice lessons at Parlando.
The orchestra will be under the direction of Keynes Chen (Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, Denver Youth Symphony and Colorado Youth Symphony). Chen is also the founder of the Flatirons Strings Academy.
David Ayers graduated from Northwestern University in Chicago with a bachelor's degree in Vocal Performance and Theater. David has starred on Broadway as Sky in Mamma Mia!, originated the role of Fyedka in the 2005 Tony-nominated revival of Fiddler on the Roof, and most recently took over the role of Fiyero in the hit Broadway musical Wicked at the Gershwin Theater. Some of his other credits include Claude in Hair at the Actor's Theatre of Louisville, the American premiere of Honk! at Northshore Music Theatre, Rodger in A New Brain at Portland's Center Stage, and The Sound of Music at the St. Louis MUNY. While in New York, he originated lead roles in the workshops of Little Women, Elton John's Lestat, Maury Yeston's Death Takes a Holiday, Barry Manilow's Harmony, and starred opposite his fiancee, Angela Gaylor, in Tom Jones. He can be heard on the revival cast recording of Fiddler on the Roof.
Ayers has worked with some of Broadway's greatest composers such as Adam Guettel, Stephen Schwartz, William Finn and George Stiles. He has studied with Ann Bogart's SITI Company at the Humana Festival of New American Plays and continued his studies at the Edinburgh Theater Festival in Scotland as well as the Festival d'Avignon in France.
His television credits include guest starring on "Law and Order: Criminal Intent" and "The Guiding Light." He has appeared in Elle Girl magazine and is featured in Wicked's coffee table book: The Grimmerie. This past summer he was a guest Master Teacher at the Broadway Theater Dance Workshop.
Angela Gaylor is a graduate with a Bachelor's in Fine Arts Degree in musical theater from the prestigious Cincinnati Conservatory of Music where she won the Laurie Beechman Award for outstanding performance. She is an alumni of Interlochen Arts Camp and a previous scholarship winner to the Sanford Meisner Neighborhood Playhouse in NYC. Gaylor has been on Broadway where she originated the role of Anne in the Tony-Award Winning revival La Cage Aux Folles, Amber in Hairspray and danced the dream ballet in Trevor Nunn/Susan Stroman's Oklahoma! She has also appeared as the title role in Cinderella at Papermill Playhouse as well as in Dream a Little Dream: The Story of the Mamas and the Papas, and Best Foot Forward off-Broadway. By age 19, she was working with Stephen Sondheim and Paul Gemignani as Anne in A Little Night Music (Mann Center, the Kennedy Center's Sondheim Celebration, Northshore Music Theater). Other roles include Julie Jordan in Carousel at Northshore Music Theater, April in Company at Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Sophia Western in Tom Jones at Northshore Music Theater, as well as originating roles in Maury Yeston's Death Takes A Holiday, Barry Manilow's Harmony, Frank Wildhorn's Camille Claudel, and the title role in Annie Lenox's Barbarella. She can be heard on the cast recording of the world premiere of George Stiles' Tom Jones and on Hal Leonard's "Tunes For Teens" CD.
Her career also extends to television where she guest starred in "Law and Order: SVU" and on "All My Children" as Libby. She has been a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra as well as the Cincinnati Pops. Gaylor is currently engaged to fellow performer and teacher David Ayers, has taught at the Broadway Dance Theater Workshop alongside Ann Reinking and is on the adjunct faculty for Wright State University.
Yin-Feng Keynes Chen has devoted most of his life to the violin. The son of a famous violinist and pedagogue in China, Chen began the violin when he was only 4 years of age. He entered the Chungking School of the Arts at the age of 11, then the Shanghai Music Conservatory when he was 13. In 1995 he moved his violin study to CU-Boulder and received his Master's Degree of Music Performance from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Chen has been teaching violin since 1994 and has received his complete Suzuki pedagogy training under the famed Suzuki Pedagogue Dr. William Starr. Chen was the principle violin teacher for Englewood Arts' Strings Attached program at five different Englewood public schools for two years. He also coaches and mentors the Boulder Youth Symphony's string quartet program, and served as a BYS board member from 2005-2006 and then the president of Boulder Youth Symphony from 2006-2007.
He often gives sectional rehearsals and master classes for Front Range youth orchestras, and he serves as the executive director of A Mid-Summer Day's Dream String Camp. From 2006-2007, he was the conductor for Colorado Youth Symphony's Sinfonia Orchestra and starting the 2007-2008 season, Chen is the conductor for CYS' Philharmonia Orchestra. Because of his passion for music education, Chen and his wife, Regan Kane, are also beginning a high-standard music school in the Boulder area called Flatirons Strings Academy.
Updated Feb. 23, 2008