Dear Friends, Students & Colleagues,With the discontinuation of the Seniors Players from Dancers Workshop, I have decided to begin a program that would help high school performers from throughout the Austin area prepare their skills for college theatre, musical theatre, dance and music programs, as well as giving them a foundation to prepare them for a professional career. The name of the program is THE PERFORMER'S WORKSHOP (or THE WORKSHOP) and it will take place on Saturday afternoons at St. Stephen's Episcopal School from 1:30-4:00pm. The training will include acting, singing and dancing, but more attention will be paid to the individual training needs of each WORKSHOP member.To help me in this endeavor, I have teamed with David Valdes, who will oversee the acting portion of the program. If you do not know David, he is the Director of the Theatre Program at St. Stephen's School. Before arriving at St. Stephen's, David was the head of the Drama department at Milwaukee High School for the Performing Arts. During his teaching career, he has consistently placed students of his in the nation's top collegiate theatre and musical theatre programs. Numerous "Valdes" students have gone on to successful careers on Broadway, television and film. For dance, we will be bringing in some of Austin's finest dance instructors. We will also bring in numerous professionals and college instructors of work with you throughout the year.The program will start on the first Saturday in September. Please feel free to pass this along to any area high school students that you feel may benefit from this program.Please contact me if you have any further questions or for registration information.Best wishes,Michael McKelveyTHE PERFOMER’S WORKSHOPA Unique Training Program for High School Theatre PerformersTHE PERFORMER’S WORKSHOP is a program designed to give high school actors, singers and dancers an opportunity to further their training in all areas (acting, singing & dancing) in an atmosphere where instruction will be of both a group-based and individual nature. The philosophy behind THE PERFORMER’S WORKSHOP is not to replace the instruction students receive in their high school theatre, music and dance programs, but rather to further the student’s knowledge, build on their personal strengths, and to help the individual improve in their areas of weakness.
Who is right for THE WORKSHOP?We would like to work with students who are interested in pursuing theatre, musical theatre, dance or vocal music at the collegiate level, and then potentially as a professional career.
What are the performance opportunities?There will be a large showcase at the end of the year with the potential for smaller, informal showings in the early spring. If you are looking to “do shows,” this probably is not the program for you. If you are committed to perfecting your strengths and strengthening your weaknesses, you have come to the right place!
The TrainingEach Saturday, students will meet for 2 1/2 hours (1:30-4:00pm). Some weeks will concentrate on one medium more than another, but each month the students will receive a significant amount of instruction in acting, singing and dancing. Once a month, the students will also attend a master class with a professional from the Austin theatre scene or professionals who are touring through Austin. We will also be taking trips to various shows in town and speaking with the performers. We will average one performance a month. For Seniors and Juniors, special attention will be paid toward getting you ready for college auditions. Special preparatory classes and private sessions will be spent with each of the instructors to get you ready.
What happens if I I cannot attend some rehearsals due to school conflicts?We are here to work with you. If a student has to miss due to a school rehearsal or competition, the directors completely understand. What we do expect of our students is their preparation outside of rehearsals and to inform us of conflicts. No performer progresses by just attending class! WORKSHOP members will be expected to take dance classes, acting classes, and voice lessons outside of weekly meeting.
Where will all of this take place?The main classes will take place at St. Stephen’s School in Westlake. Additional classes and workshops will also be held at St. Edward’s University.
How many people will be accepted in THE WOKSHOP?We will accept 18-22 high school students and 3 eight graders (who will have the rank of “Apprentice”). Students will be admitted based on a formal audition. Former members of Senior Players and members of the St. Stephen’s Theatre Focus Program will be admitted without audition.
What is the cost of the program?Each student will pay tuition of $125.00 a month*. The payment will be due on the 1st of every month. Seniors who are going to be auditioning for college will pay $150.00 per month to cover the cost of their additional instruction.*In comparison to other performing programs in the city, the tuition for THE WORKSOP is significantly less for the individualized attention that each member will receive.
The Faculty and StaffDr. Michael McKelvey, Artistic Director/Music Director (Coordinator of Music at St. Edward’s University, Music Director for State Theatre, Zilker Summer Musical and Austin Playhouse.)David Valdes, Director of Acting Studies (Head of the St. Stephen’s Theatre Program, former Director of Theatre for Milwaukee High School for the Performing Arts)Ginger Morris (Director of Texas Arts Project and Co-Director of Summerstock Austin)Stuart Moulton (Artistic Director, Austin Cabaret Theatre)Susan Threadgill (Stage Manager, Austin Lyric Opera)Tom Mitchell (Music Director for numerous local and regional productions)Dance Faculty will be announced 8/11/05 (Thursday)!!!!!! I am just waiting for confirmations.
For more information or to register, please call Michael McKelvey at 296-3494 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org