Frequently Asked Questions:
What is Broadway Kidz?
Broadway Kidz is, above all else, difficult to describe.
It’s the original musical revue for youth ages 5-18 years old in this area. However, it isn’t just a random musical theater concert. It is a work of theater that utilizes Broadway, Pop, Rock and Country tunes from the last few decades with innovative staging that tells stories and creates a new work of theater.
It’s also a training program with a unique business model. Though the training is similar to tuition based programs around the state, the end product is a show so entertaining, the ticket sales replace the need for tuition.
It is NOT a collection of songs from Broadway shows that might make you wish you were watching a whole show. It is a complete show using some of the best music from the last half century.
Who does Broadway Kidz?
Over the last 20 years, Broadway Kidz cast members have gone on to careers in film and stages all over the world, recording artists, successful theater teachers, and even parents and directors of other Broadway Kidz. Some just develop more confidence.
This year, at East High where I teach, I was lucky to have Broadway director Jeff Whiting give a master class and audition students for his Open Jar Institute. As I talked with his associate director Tanner DeWaal, we realized that he was in Broadway Kidz when he was 10 years old. He said that he discovered that Broadway Kidz was a common experience for many of his lifelong friends in the theater community.
Is it just for children?
No. A key to the success of BK is that it has been exciting and challenging roles for older teens as well. A big kid-little kid mix is key to the BK aesthetic.
How is it different from other Children’s Theater Shows?
Unlike most stories that are about a few characters and thus ideal for professional shows where fewer actors is a lower budget. Instead the stories are about groups of characters so that there are many more leads, solos and ensemble than in any traditional play or musical.
What is the theme this year?
Some BK productions are variety shows based on a theme. This year’s theme has a complete story similar to Broadway Kidz: Hit the Books 2.
In this show, we meet a family facing individually and as a group facing significant challenges. However, each of them copes with the help of a different magical pet. The pets are puppets voiced and operated by visible puppeteers similar to those found in the Broadway version of The Lion King. Each of the five segments has several main characters and different groups of ensemble.
How many people do you cast?
Our goal is 100 kids, each with their own moment in the sun.
When are rehearsals?
Do I have to be at all rehearsals?
No. We make very clear schedules so that you will know exactly when you need to be there. We call people to rehearsals and leave them sitting around waiting for their turns.
What if I have a family vacation or summer camp during the summer?
Usually, not a problem. The schedule is divided for a different segment of the show to receive the bulk of its rehearsal in one week. If you will be gone in that week, we won’t have you in that section. That’s why it’s important that you be very clear about your schedule conflicts when you audition.
What if I have one weekly conflict like voice or piano lessons?
With so many kids in the shows, we can’t always schedule to everybody’s conflicts. But if it’s just one or two hours a week, it shouldn’t be a problem. More than that, and you may need to make a choice. We don’t want to let you go on unprepared.
What about year round school?
Sorry. The amphitheater is only available during the day. We don’t want students rehearsing in the hottest parts of the afternoon.
Why do I have to audition?
Auditions are helpful to help us know exactly which roles you will play and which numbers you will be in. Don’t be nervous. Preparing for an audition is part of the experiences that help you to become a great performer.
What are you looking for in the audition?
We are looking to see what your strengths are so that we can know what you will do very best. We need to see how you move, how loudly and clearly you speak and what type of singing voice you have. Use the audition to let us know who you are. That will help us decide which pieces of the show you will be in.
But I was going to do this other community theater or get a job this summer.
With the morning rehearsals, hopefully you will be able to do both.
Should I do it?
Yes. You will have a great time.
Yes. You will have a great time.