Every year a select group of seniors from the musical theatre program are given the opportunity to travel to New York City and perform in a showcase for industry professionals including agents and casting directors. With the amount of hard work that goes into preparation, what exactly does this mean for the students involved? TV2’s Kim Anderson has the story.
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While most graduating college seniors are concerned about final exams, internships, and job interviews, students in the musical theatre program are preparing to travel to New York for showcase.
The Kent State musical theatre program selects seniors every year who are interested in working specifically in New York following graduation and sends them to the city to perform in a showcase for industry professionals including agents and casting directors.
During the spring semester they are enrolled in a three credit hour course that is used for preparation. Each student prepares two minutes of material to perform and then also performs a group number with the rest of the students.
Dylan Ratell is a musical theatre major who said that “musical theatre kind of found him.” He is just one of the talented seniors who has been preparing for showcase, and he said that the most exciting part is that “it’s opening the door to the industry” and that they get to “perform what [they’ve] been doing for four years” except they’re finally there.
“The musical theatre program has given me the tools I need to succeed, and showcase is the icing on the cake, I get to audition for it and be in it and get in front of all these industry professionals, and I think there’s a lot in store for this university and this showcase.”
The showcase isn’t just exciting for the students who are performing, as the faculty and staff that are involved are also excited to see what will come next.
Cynthia Stillings is the Director of the School of Theatre and Dance and she is very proud of the work that the students have done. She said that not only does it shave years off of the initial audition process for an actor, but it’s also a “culminating experience as a performer.” She also added that as a whole “Kent State takes great pride in these talented students.”
As for Ratell, he credits the Kent State Musical Theatre program for shaping him into “such a smart performer.” His future plans include moving to New York early next fall and “auditioning as much as possible.”