MILLBURN, NJ - Paper Mill Playhouse (Mark S. Hoebee-Producing Artistic Director, Michael Stotts- Managing Director), recipient of the Tony Award for Regional Theatre, announces the World Premiere of New Voices of 2020: Pure Imagination, a musical theater montage featuring students of the 2020 Summer Musical Theater Conservatory.  New Voices of 2020: Pure Imagination will premiere on Tuesday, September 22, 2020 at 7:00 pm on Paper Mill’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. 

 

In March of 2020, Paper Mill Playhouse, like every business and school in the state of New Jersey, was forced to close temporarily in response to the coronavirus pandemic.  The theater’s Summer Musical Theater Conservatory - a professional training program for the next generation of musical theater performers - made the decision not to cancel classes and moved the program to an online format.  Paper Mill faculty and creative staff used new ways to deliver musical theater instruction via Zoom, and our video-savvy students were empowered to tell their musical stories using an entirely different medium – film.  The annual New Voices concert, which has helped to launch the careers of many notable alumni, has been reimagined from a live stage concert to an inspiring video montage of work conceived and proudly performed by our students.  

 

Paper Mill Producing Artistic Director Mark S. Hoebee noted, “This summer’s student company, in particular, has persevered despite many recent disappointments and obstacles.  I look forward to sharing their incredible work with the world.  We couldn’t be more proud of their effort and dedication”

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The theater’s prestigious Summer Musical Theater Conservatory prepares students for professional theater industry.  The program of rigorous study allows students to enhance their individual performance potential while developing a broad base of theater experience and knowledge. Students participate in intensive classes including musical theater performance, dance, private voice and monologue coaching, and improvisation, while also attending guest workshops led by Broadway industry professionals.  The final weeks are devoted to rehearsals for the New Voices performanceThe Conservatory offers the unique opportunity for gifted and talented young performers to work at their own level and challenge themselves to achieve new goals and learn new skills. Key to the curriculum is the development of self-discipline, respect, and a commitment to excellence that will serve these young artists throughout their lives. 

 

“From the first day of class all the way through performing for New Voices, we require our students to rise to the demands of this rigorous program,” stated Lisa Cooney, Paper Mill Playhouse Director of Education.  “We ask them to work harder than they ever have before as young performers, and we strive to build an incredible ensemble company, while each student hones their own individual performance skills.  Our faculty pushes the students to believe in themselves as professional artists and treats them as such.  We find summer after summer that our students meet our expectations and more.  When they move on to college or the professional world, they are ready for the challenges they’ll face, and time and again they thrive and ultimately live their dream of being a professional performer.  It’s gratifying when they make a name or themselves on Broadway or in Hollywood, but even if they do not, the skills they learn and the work ethic they develop will serve them in any field.”

 

Many of the students from Paper Mill Playhouse’s Conservatory have gone on to appear on Broadway, in regional theater productions, in film and on television.

 

Conservatory Alumni include:

 

Anne Hathaway - Twelfth Night, Film: Les Misérables (2013 Academy Award Winner), Rachel Getting Married (2009 Academy Award & Golden Globe nominee), Get Smart, Brokeback Mountain, The Devil Wears Prada, & Disney’s The Princess Diaries

Ali Stroker – Tony Award winner for Oklahoma, Broadway: Spring Awakening, Oxygen’s The Glee Project: Season 2; Paper Mill’s 25th   Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Olive Ostrovsky)

Laura Benanti - Broadway: She Loves Me, Gypsy (2008 Tony Award winner), Into the Woods, The Wedding Singer, Swing!

Julia Knitel – Broadway: Beautiful: the Carole King Musical (u/s Carole King); Bye Bye Birdie

Robert McClure - Broadway: Something Rotten, Honeymoon in Vegas, Chaplin,    Avenue Q

Shanice Williams- NBC’s The Wiz Live!

Jelani Remy: Broadway’s Ain’t To Proud, The Lion King, Smokey Joe’s Café

Joshua Dela Cruz - Broadway’s Disney’s Aladdin (Aladdin Understudy)

Nikki M. James - Broadway: Les Misérables, Book of Mormon (2011 Tony Award winner), All Shook Up

Avery Espiritu: Broadway: The King and I

Daisy Hobbs – Broadway: Disney’s Aladdin

Matthew Scott - Broadway: Jersey Boys, A Catered Affair (Ralph), Sondheim on Sondheim

Collin Kelly-Sordelet – Broadway: The Last Ship (Young Gideon)

Jared Gertner - Olivier Award nominee West End, Broadway & National Tour of The Book Of Mormon (Elder        Cunningham)

Veronica J. Kuehn – Broadway: Mamma Mia!, Xanadu; Off Broadway: Avenue Q

Neil McCaffrey Broadway: Mary Poppins (Michael), Bye, Bye Birdie (Randolph), Billy Elliot (Michael)

Monette McKay – Broadway: Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark, Memphis, Mamma Mia!

Constantine Rousouli - Broadway: Hairspray (Link), Ghost the Musical, Wicked

Jonathan Schwartz - Broadway’s Disney’s Aladdin (Omar)

Darius Jordan Lee:  Broadway’s Ain’t To Proud

Elizabeth Egan Gillies - Nickelodeon’s Victorious; Broadway: 13! The Musical

Lael Van Keuran – Broadway: Sister Act

Matt Ban – Broadway: Rock of Ages (Dennis)

 

2020 CONSERVATORY STUDENTS BY TOWN

 

Libby

Schmitt

Basking Ridge

NJ

Rachel

Cabrera

Belleville

NJ

Aidan

English

Berkeley Heights

NJ

Alex

Vacchiano

Boonton Township

NJ

Alaina

Gust

Bridgewater

NJ

Alyssa

Tanti

Cedar Grove

NJ

Brooke

Raughton

Chattanooga

TN

Jessica

Bracken

Clifton

NJ

Gabe

Waits

Colorado Springs

CO

Ana

Monteiro

Denville

NJ

Rachel

Perl

Fair Lawn

NJ

Lauren

Hertzig

Flanders

NJ

Leina

Staudinger

Green Brook

NJ

Gracie

Nagle

Hackettstown

NJ

Violet

Pyatt

Highland Park

NJ

Chloe

Hreha

Howell

NJ

Evan

Gray

Kinnelon

NJ

Katie

Nieto

Kinnelon

NJ

Caroline

Nieto

Kinnelon

NJ

Olivia

Terpin

Lebanon

NJ

Zoe Dee

Lento

Livingston

NJ

Jonah

Ruderman

Livingston

NJ

Avery

Benjamin

Madison

NJ

Anna

McCarthy

Madison

NJ

Sophia

Bernstein

Mahwah

NJ

Annie

Caravella

Manahawkin

NJ

Luzita

Avila

Maplewood

NJ

Ben

Halperin

Maplewood

NJ

Mitchell

Pressel

Maplewood

NJ

Lindsay

Waldman

Marlboro

NJ

Juliana

Johnston

Metuchen

NJ

Amanda

Heckmann

Millburn

NJ

Benjamin

Levine

Millburn

NJ

Leilani

Westfall-Kwong

Millburn

NJ

Olivia

King

Montclair

NJ

Will

DeLargy

Morristown

NJ

John

Shea

North Brunswick

NJ

Samantha

Alper

Nutley

NJ

Valeria

Flores

Nutley

NJ

Olivia

Costanzo

Oak Ridge

NJ

Gianna

Trivisani

Oakland

NJ

Adrielle

Perde

Orange

NJ

Kendall

Langevine

Piscataway

NJ

Timmy

Gaffney

Raritan

NJ

Ben

Harris

Ridgewood

NJ

Liam

Fahey

Ringwood

NJ

Katelyn

McGovern

Rockaway

NJ

Lexi

Ciardella

Roseland

NJ

Amanda

Lombardo

Saylorsburg

PA

Abigail

Bera

Sayreville

NJ

Elizabeth

Bera

Sayreville

NJ

Gavin

Lesnivich

Scotch Plains

NJ

Bailey

Edelman

Short Hills

NJ

Olivia

Shannon

Short Hills

NJ

Anton

MacLachlan

South Orange

NJ

Ethan

Flanagan

Stroudsburg

PA

Callie

Chae Pyken

Studio City

CA

Ava

Reitz-Bouren

Summit

NJ

Elyana

Barroqueiro

Union

NJ

Karum

Bhawnani

Union

NJ

Gerald

Cetrulo

Wayne

NJ

Lillian

Kopacz

Wayne

NJ

Kyan

Bashkoff

West Orange

NJ

Madison

Gough

West Orange

NJ

Riley

Hahn

West Orange

NJ

Evan

Leone

Westfield

NJ

Kayla

Louison

Westfield

NJ

Bryan

Fortunato

Wyckoff

NJ

 

Paper Mill Playhouse Education & Outreach are generously sponsored by The Goren Family and the Harmony Helper App.  New Voices and the Summer Musical Theater Conservatory are supported by the Investors Foundation.

 

PAPER MILL PLAYHOUSE, a not-for-profit arts organization under the direction of Mark S. Hoebee (Producing Artistic Director) and Michael Stotts (Managing Director) and recipient of the 2016 Regional Theatre Tony Award, is one of the country's leading regional theaters. Paper Mill Playhouse is a member of the National Alliance for Musical Theater, the Council of Stock Theaters, and the New Jersey Theatre Alliance.