Cincinnati.com: “Loveland actor – and Pace Musical Theater Major – works his way onto ‘CSI'”

Beau Cybulski, a musical theater major at Pace University’s campus in New York City, made his TV debut on “CSI: Miami” Sunday, January 29.

Beau Cybulski didn’t mind eating Domino’s pizza on Thanksgiving, because he was in Los Angeles to make his national TV debut on “CSI: Miami,” airing tonight.

“They flew me out there,” Cybulski told writer Chuck Gibson of the Loveland Herald weekly. “I actually got to go sit on set all day. I got to get a feel for everything and learn how everything works on set. It was really, really cool.”

The 2010 Loveland High School graduate, now a musical theater major at Pace University in New York, plays Cameron Locke, the son of the murdered skydiver on the show (10 p.m. today, Channel 12).

Last year, Cybulksi contacted the show, which is produced by Loveland High School graduate Ann Donahue.

He sent producers a video audition, but was told they “wanted someone older,” said Cybulski.

The young actor came home this weekend for his 20th birthday Friday to watch the show with his family.

“Three weeks later they actually sent over another part,” he said. “It was more specific for me, my age and my type. That one I ended up getting.”

CBS’ description for the “Terminal Velocity” episode simply says:

“When a skydiver is murdered, the CSIs discover that he has more than 100 children and all of them are suspects.”

In high school, Cybulski starred in “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” sang with Loveland Show Choirs and performed in “Don’t Stop the Music” at King’s Island.

BroadwayWorld.com: “Photo Flash – Pace New Musicals Presents Zoe Sarnak’s A LASTING IMPRESSION”

The Pace New Musicals Program was developed in 2007 to nurture the creation of new musical theater in New York City, while at the same time providing an invaluable educational opportunity for students to work directly with top professionals in the field. Perhaps most importantly, the program allows students to experiment with new, untested works without precedent-setting productions, a rare opportunity in theater education.

In “A Lasting Impression,” each of the three lead characters chose their own artistic medium – book, music or visual design – to express one shared story, reports BroadwayWorld.com

Josh Weinstein, a once guarded journalist, acts as the play’s narrator, using old taped interviews and pictures to guide us through his memory of his two sisters. Kali Blanche, a manic musician, is the piece’s composer, moving in and out of “her” band as the story unfolds. Simone Blanche, a young painter, controls the evolution of what begins as a blank set, and comes to life through the addition of her visual art.

“A Lasting Impression” is about impressions that we make through love, on those close to us, and through art, on those we may never meet.

The eight Pace Musical Theater students who will be bringing “A Lasting Impression” to life without costumes or scenery are (in alphabetical order, with hometown and their character roles):

Aaron Albert (Los Angeles, CA) as Josh Weinstein
Bethany Jeffery (Cincinnati, OH) as Mother
Taylor Noble (Glastonbury, CT) as Kali Blanche
Danny Quadrino (East Rockaway, NY) as Josh Understudy
Krista Pioppi (Succasunna, NY) as Kali’s Band
Cailan Rose (Sarasota, FL) as Simone Blanche
Kevin Shotwell (Wilmington, DE) as Franklin
Emily Thomas (Pittsburgh, PA) as Kali’s Band

The actors will be supported by Alex James (Schwenksville, PA) as Stage Manager and Dylan Bustamante (Babylon, NY) as Assistant Director.

 

NEWS RELEASE: Pace New Musicals Announce Premiere of its 2012 Official Selection, Zoe Sarnkak’s “A Lasting Impression” on January 18

Pace New Musicals has selected Zoe Sarnak’s “A Lasting Impression” – a tangled story of three artists: a composer, a writer, and a painter – as its 2012 official selection. There will be seven staged reading performances with a live band beginning January 18 at Pace’s Schaeberle Studio Theater, 41 Park Row, 10th Floor. For reservations call (212) 346-1352 or email performingarts@pace.edu

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contacts: Samuella Becker, Pace Media Relations, sbecker2@pace.edu; 212-346-1637 or 917-734-5172; Robert Meffe, Music Director, rmeffe@pace.edu, 917-297-3897

Pace New Musicals Announces Premiere of its 2012 Official Selection,

Zoe Sarnak’s A Lasting Impression, at

Pace University’s Schaeberle Theater on January 18 – 22

 Staged Reading Performances with Live Band

 Directed by Amy Rogers; Music Direction by Robert Meffe

NEW YORK, NY, January 13, 2012 – Pace University’s Pace New Musicals program, dedicated to the discovery of new theater works, has selected Zoe Sarnak’s A Lasting Impression from over 50 submissions as its 2012 most promising show.

Amy Rogers, Associate Professor of Musical Theater and creator of the BFA Musical Degree program at the Dyson College of Arts & Science at Pace University, and Robert Meffe, Musical Director, are collaborating with Sarnak on a staged reading of her musical.

A Lasting Impression will be presented at Pace’s Schaeberle Studio, 41 Park Row, 10th Floor, Pace NYC Campus  from January 18-22;  performances Wednesday-Friday at 8:00PM; Saturday at 2:00 & 8:00PM and Sunday at 8:00PM.  Ticket prices: $5 for students; $10 for adults.  For reservations call (212) 346-1352 or email performingarts@pace.edu

In A Lasting Impression, each of the three lead characters chose their own artistic medium – book, music or visual design – to express one shared story. Josh, a once guarded journalist, acts as the play’s narrator, using old taped interviews and pictures to guide us through his memory of his two sisters. Kali, a manic musician, is the piece’s composer, moving in and out of “her” band as the story unfolds. Simone, a young painter, controls the evolution of what begins as a blank set, and comes to life through the addition of her visual art. A Lasting Impression is about impressions that we make through love, on those close to us, and through art, on those we may never meet.

The eight Pace Musical Theater students who will be bringing A Lasting Impression to life without costumes or scenery are (in alphabetical order, with hometown and their character roles):

  • Aaron Albert (Los Angeles, CA) as Josh Weinstein
  • Bethany Jeffery (Cincinnati, OH) as Mother
  • Taylor Noble (Glastonbury, CT) as Kali Blanche
  • Danny Quadrino (East Rockaway, NY) as Josh Understudy
  • Krista Pioppi  (Succasunna, NY) as Kali’s Band
  • Cailan Rose (Sarasota, FL) as Simone Blanche
  • Kevin Shotwell (Wilmington, DE) as Franklin
  • Emily Thomas (Pittsburgh, PA) as Kali’s Band

The actors will be supported by Alex James (Schwenksville, PA) as Stage Manager and Dylan Bustamante (Babylon, NY) as Assistant Director.

The Pace New Musicals Program was developed in 2007 to nurture the creation of new musical theater in New York City, while at the same time providing an invaluable educational opportunity for students to work directly with top professionals in the field. Perhaps most importantly, the program allows students to experiment with new, untested works without precedent-setting productions, a rare opportunity in theater education.

The BFA Musical Theater Program at Pace University began with six majors in 2002, and has grown to more than 90 majors. In 2006, Pace became only the second school in New York City to offer a BFA in Musical Theater.

Past works in the Pace New Musicals Program include staged workshops of Factory Girls by Creighton Irons, Sean Mahoney, and Maggie-Kate Coleman; Quanah by Larry Gatlin, Anthony Dodge, Marcia Milgrom Dodge; Darling by Ryan Scott Oliver and B.T. Ryback’s; Luck!, by Mark Waldrop and Brad Ross; and College: The Musical, which was later selected for a production with the New York Musical Theatre Festival where the authors, Scott Elmegreen and Drew Fornarola, won the NYMF award for Excellence In Writing (Lyrics).

ZOE SARNAK (Writer) is a composer, lyricist, and playwright. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University where her first show, The Quad, was produced in 2009. In addition to numerous concert/cabaret features and performances with her band, TheWD, Sarnak has written two new musicals including A Lasting Impression, and Mixtape, which will be featured in Silent Street Productions 2011/2012 season.

AMY ROGERS (Director) is a tenured Associate Professor of Musical Theater at Pace University where she created the BFA Musical Theatre degree program.  Originally from Canada, Amy received her degree in musical theatre from Arizona State University, and her MFA from San Diego State University.  NYC directing credits include: Carousel, College: The Musical, Ragtime, The Wild Party (Lippa), Little Women and Violet. Amy has assisted director Lonny Price on Can-Can and Kismet at Encores at City Center, Candide with the New York Philharmonic and the Emmy Award winning Passion for Live at Lincoln Center.

ROBERT MEFFE (Music Director) is a professional music director, pianist, orchestrator, and vocal coach. On Broadway he was the Associate Conductor of Little Women as well as Les Miserables for the last six years of its run. Off-Broadway: Violet, The Prince and the Pauper, and Gutenberg! The Musical!. He was the Music Director for the National Tour of The Phantom of the Opera and has played keyboards for Mamma Mia, Hairspray, Avenue Q, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Grey Gardens, and Bombay Dreams.  Meffe is the Director of Music for the Musical Theater Program at Pace University.

About Dyson College of Arts and Science’s Performing Arts Programs at Pace University:

Undergraduate: Dyson’s Performing Arts Department (PAD) offers Bachelor of Fine Arts Degrees in Acting and in Musical Theater and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theater Arts with specialized focuses in Acting, Directing, Commercial Dance or Design/Technical Theater. On average, there are 1,000 applicants for every 100 new openings each year. PAD presents over 50 performances every year. Performance spaces range from the Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts, Schaeberle (black box) Theater, and Studio 501, home to many student-directed productions. http://www.pace.edu/dyson/academic-departments-and-programs/performing-arts

Graduate: The Actors Studio Drama School at Pace University, also located in Dyson College, is the only MFA (Acting, Directing and Playwriting) theatre program officially sanctioned by the legendary Actors Studio (co-presidents Ellen Burstyn, Harvey Keitel and Al Pacino). All MFA students participate in the Craft Seminars known to the world as the Bravo Network television series Inside the Actors Studio (taped at Pace’s Schimmel Theater and open to students), hosted by James Lipton, Dean Emeritus and Co-Founder of the Actors Studio Drama School. www.Pace.edu/ASDS

About Pace University: For 105 years, Pace University has educated thinking professionals by providing high quality education for the professions on a firm base of liberal learning amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, College of Health Professions, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. www.pace.edu

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Naples Daily News: “Whitney Winfield soaring in ‘Next Broadway Star’ contest (vote for her!)”

Musical Theater Senior Whitney Winfield has been performing onstage since the age of 8 and has never given up on her dream of being on Broadway. She has sung in countless competitions, in addition to performing in more than 40 musicals and plays. The Pace Community can give Whitney a chance to make her goal a reality by voting for her video on the Broadway.tv website. (http://j.mp/ndnwhitney). Only Facebook Likes on the Broadway.tv website count as votes for Whitney, not Likes on YouTube.

A  musical theater major from Naples, FL, Whitney Winfield, has been making her Broadway dreams fly in the Big Apple, hurtling into the semifinals of Broadway.tv’s “Next Broadway Star” talent competition. Fans can help her win by voting for her video by “Liking” it at the Broadway.tv website. (http://www.broadway.tv/blog/broadway-blog/next-broadway-star-semifinalist-whitney-winfield/).

Naples Daily News:

“The contest has been a platform for publicizing my career,” Winfield said. “Winning the Next Broadway Star could help bring me more opportunities to audition, make more industry connections, add more videos to my portfolio on YouTube … and not to mention the $5,000 prize to help me pay off student loans.”

The Next Broadway Star” contestants compete in a series of four monthly contests at the 42nd Street McDonald’s store, the chain’s highest-grossing hamburger shop in the world.

“We perform on a balcony to a crowd below where the judges are also sitting,” Winfield said. “It is an interesting experience performing for strangers who have just come to McDonald’s to have a meal. However, much to their surprise and delight, they also get a ‘show.'”

At each performance, contestants are judged on vocal ability, energy, and stage persona. In addition to the exposure generated by the contest, the winner will receive a cash prize of $5,000 and a chance to audition for some of Broadway’s most prestigious casting directors and producers.

“The competition is strong,” Winfield said. “We get little rehearsal time and we don’t see each other’s material until an hour before the competition begins, which puts the pressure on at the very last moment.”

Winfield powered through the quarterfinals with “Gimme Gimme” from “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and rolled out rocking Dixie Chicks anthem “Sin Wagon” (complete with boots and form-fitting, off the shoulder black minidress) for the semifinals.

“I wanted to do the Dixie Chicks​ song because it’s fun,” Winfield said. “I can do many different styles, based on my background and training, and I want to share that in this competition, as well as on the Internet.

Winfield does indeed have a solid background in country music; she used to perform in country karaoke competitions in Naples and even recorded a short demo CD, which she said her father still “cherishes and will share with anyone who’s interested.”

The judges loved the sexy, country-inspired turn.

Winfield also admitted to banking on strategy in tackling the country number after picking a solid Broadway tune for her first performance.

“The more variety the better in this contest because that is what Broadway today is all about,” she said. “You really need to be able to perform any style asked of you.”

Winfield has been performing since she was 8 – and always knew she wanted to be a performer. Her first role was Besse Mae Mucho in “Aladdin McFaddin,” a children’s theater version of the Disney movie.

“My favorite part of the whole experience was the costume that I got to wear,” Winfield said. “It was a sort of harem girl’s garb, flowing and baring my midriff!”

Neapolitan audiences will remember the songstress from starring roles Naples Players productions such as “Beauty and the Beast” in 2007 and “Thoroughly Modern Millie” in 2009, plus “No, No, Nanette” at TheatreZone in January.

Winfield roared into the semifinals with a little help from her friends. Viewers can vote for their favorite contestants online via Facebook, YouTube and Broadway.tv – and Winfield called in the troops from back home. Family, friends and fellow performers – anyone with a Facebook account – helped the young warbler total up 355 “Likes” and earn her the designation as a co-favorite in the competition.

“I have been blessed with a great support system whom I have called upon to aid me in gaining votes for the contest,” Winfield said. “I am so lucky to have people who believe in me as much as they do.”

Now, she’s out to repeat the success.

Winfield left Naples at the age of 15 to attend Interlochen Arts Academy, a prestigious boarding school for the performing arts in Michigan. She’s in her senior year at Pace University in New York City, pursuing a musical theatre degree.

Right now, Winfield is staying busy. She’s working at New York cupcake shop Baked By Melissa, going to school full-time, preparing for winter finals, graduation, senior showcase and gearing up for winter and spring musical auditions. All this, plus the contest.

“There is a lot in the cooker right now,” she said, “and it is a lot to balance, but I find that I work at my best when I am busy and under pressure.”

While the future looms – and hasn’t been written yet, the talented young singer and actress is ready for it.

“In May, I will be a college graduate and I’ll go out in to the world, auditioning and performing,” Winfield said. “I am so excited for what the future holds.”

Neapolitan Whitney Winfield determined to be the ‘Next Broadway Star’ » Naples Daily News.

BroadwayWorld.com: “Pace University Announces Open Submissions for ‘Pace New Musicals'”

Got script and musical score? Pace New Musicals will provide the space, the performers, a stage manager, a light board and light operator, and a director and music director.

“Our objective is to nurture the creation of new musical theater in New York City and to provide an invaluable educational opportunity to our students to work directly with top professionals in the field,” said Amy Rogers, the founder and director of Pace’s Musical Theater Program.

Pace’s  Musical Theater Program is currently accepting submissions of new musical theater works, reports BroadwayWorld.com  

Deadline: October 7, 2011.

The chosen piece will be given a full reading in the Schaeberle Theater at Pace University in lower Manhattan, with actors chosen from the musical theater student body. There will be a two-week rehearsal period starting Tuesday, January 3, 2012, with seven performances starting January 18 and ending January 22, 2012.

Because of the short rehearsal time, completed scores and scripts are requested. Pace New Musicals will provide the space, the performers, a stage manager, a light board and light operator, and a director and music director.  If there is already a director and/or music director attached to the project and wants to continue that association, then it is up to the creators whether or not to use them for this reading.

For submission details, click here

PREVIOUS PRODUCTIONS: 

  •  2011 – Factory Girls written by Creighton Irons, Sean Mahoney and Maggie-Kate Coleman about the young women in the textile mills of Massachusetts. 
  • 2010 – Quanah, the musical journey of Comanche chief Quanah Parker and his mother, Cynthia Ann Parker, who was kidnapped as a girl and raised by the Comanches as one of their own.  Music, story and lyrics by legendary country music star Larry Gatlin, book by Anthony Dodge, and dramaturgy by Ragtime director Marcia Milgrom Dodge.
  • 2009 – Jonathan Larson award winner Ryan Scott Oliver’s and B.T. Ryback’s Darling, is a  musical which follows upper crust teenager Ursula Morgan in 1929 Boston as society boils in the weeks before the Crash.
  • 2008 – College: The Musical, a tuneful and honest look at modern campus life, written by two recent Princeton graduates.  It was subsequently chosen for production with the New York Musical Theatre Festival where the authors, Scott Elmegreen and Drew Fornarola, won the NYMF award for Excellence in Writing Lyrics. 
  • 2007 – A staged workshop of Mark Waldrop and Brad Ross’ musical, Luck!  In this fractured folk tale based on a story by Isaac Bashevis Singer, Mazel and Shlimazel, the spirits of Good Luck and Bad Luck, make a bet to determine who is the more powerful.

Independent Press: Sophomore BFA Musical Theater Major “Amanda Braun appearing in ‘Hairspray'”

Amanda Braun stars as Amber Von Tussle in “Hairspray” at Plays-in-the-Park in Edison, NJ, July 13 – July 23. Braun, a sophomore, is pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree of Fine Arts in Pace’s musical theater program.

Amanda Braun was recently seen in the Off-Broadway show The Awesome 80s Prom, as a featured singer at Joe’s Pub in New York City and in Pace University’s production of The Who’s Tommy.

Next Up …  Braun will play Amber Von Tussle, Tracy Turnblad’s main antagonist in the Tony award-winning musical Hairspray, from Wednesday, July 13, through Saturday, July 23 at Plays in the Park in Edison, NJ.

Braun, a 2010 graduate of Watchung Hills Regional High School, studied dance at Center Stage Dance and Theater School in East Brunswick for 16 years, and was a member of their dance companies in jazz, tap, hip hop, and ballet. These dance companies are regional and national winners and she won the solo title in the Thrive nationals in Boston, reports the Independent Press.

Plays in the Park takes place in Roosevelt Park, right next to the Menlo Park Mall. The shows begin each night at 8:30 p.m. with the box office opening at 5:30pm, except Sunday when the stage is dark. Tickets can be purchased at the theater, and are $7 for adults, $5 for seniors, and children under 12 are free. Audience members should bring their own lawn chairs.

The Christian Science Monitor: “Tony Awards 2011: It’s a boy’s life?”

Male-focused and male-written shows dominate this year’s Tony nominations. Most went to Americans who have won before, changing trends that rewarded Brits and newcomers.

But despite the glaring deficit of women, particularly in the writing category, the Tony nominations reveal heartening trends, especially in the musical theater realm, says Robert Meffe, director of the BFA musical theater program at Pace University.

For one, they’ve gone native.

In the musical categories, especially for best musical, Professor Meffe sees a new and exciting trend in that the four new musicals were written by established American musical theater composers. Each of these composers has won Tony Awards for their previous shows, he said.

“This was commonplace in the 1950’s and 1960’s during the age of Rodgers & Hammerstein, but it has mostly been supplanted in the 1980’s by British productions (like the Andrew Lloyd Webber behemoths) and then more recently, by composers taking their first crack at Broadway shows,” he says, pointing to “In the Heights,” and “Avenue Q.” He notes that while the favored winner (“The Book of Mormon”) is partially written by the South Park crew of TV fame, Robert “Bobby” Lopez, composer of “Avenue Q,” is their third co-writer. The very short list of revivals – only two, this year – is a sharp departure from the conventional wisdom that audiences only support what they know, notes Meffe.

Musical theater will always have to argue for its relevance, Robert Meffe says in an article in The Christian Science Monitor, but Fox’s “Glee” and Disney’s “High School Musical” have brought a new high point of popularity. The audience for musical theater is younger than it has been in decades, he adds, and the box office bears that out: gross revenues have broken records in most of the previous eight seasons.

Furthermore, musical theater college programs have witnessed a sharp increase in demand and enrollment in over the past few years, he says.

“This spring at Pace we auditioned over 300 people for the 25 open slots in our class of 2015,” says Meffe, director of Pace’s BFA musical theater program. “This is in a program that started out eight years ago with six students.”

The New York Times: “Rehearse Me a Little, Wherever You Are”

Lonny Price, the director of a new production of “Company” that will have four performances with the New York Philharmonic at Avery Fisher Hall starting Thursday, was guiding the performers he had on hand through a dry run of “The Little Things You Do Together.”

But to accommodate its A-list performers such as Patti LuPone, Neil Patrick Harris, Jon Cryer, Martha Plimpton, Stephen Colbert, Christina Hendricks, Jim Walton, Craig Bierko, Katie Finneran and Anika Noni Rose — who, with their multitude of day jobs and existing commitments, will not be all in the same place until Thursday — the production has resorted to a grab bag of strategies, shortcuts and cheats, some old school and others newfangled, to get its far-flung cast up to speed as quickly as possible.

Turning to Amy Rogers, a former assistant of his who directs Pace’s musical theater-program, Price recruited students there to learn the show over the winter; they were then recorded singing the songs and performing the blocking and choreography in audio and video files given to the production’s official cast.

For the Pace students in “Company’s” backup cast, the assignment hardly feels like homework at all.

“I had lunch today with Jon Cryer and Jim Walton,” said Cathryn Salamone, a 20-year-old sophomore who has been covering for Ms. LuPone and Ms. Finneran. “These little things, I kind of have to pinch myself sometimes. People can be however famous they can be, but people are people and it’s so cool.”

She added: “I honestly have been to maybe two classes in the past three weeks, so I’ll be very depressed when this is over.”

EVENT ADVISORY: Score One FREE Ticket to Pace Performing Arts Production of The Who’s “Tommy” with Pace ID – Friday, April 1, 2 PM Matinee

This is NOT an April Fools’ joke but a very special offer from Pace Performing Arts!

Present your Pace ID at the Schimmel Theater Box Office on Friday, April 1st for a complimentary ticket to the 2 pm performance of “The Who’s Tommy.”

Peter Townshend’s tale of a young boy’s journey from pain to triumph is the most electrifying afternoon/evening of rock and roll ever to play in a theatre!

“Tommy” is an explosive, Tony Award-winning rock musical, based on the classic concept album by The Who.  It tells the story of a psychosomatically blind, deaf, and mute boy who gains fame through his superstar talent for pinball and later becomes a cult guru, through songs like “Pinball Wizard” and “See Me, Feel Me.”

The Broadsheet Daily: “Pace Spins A Yarn about ‘Factory Girls’ – Fact-Based Rock Musical Recalls Labor Pains of 1840s”

At the dawn of America’s Industrial Revolution, young women known as “Mill Girls” flocked to Lowell, MA, from farms throughout New England, hoping to make a better life for themselves. What they found instead were 14-hour workdays, packed dormitories, and puritanical overseers who monitored their behavior around the clock.

“Factory Girls” will be performed Jan 26-30, 2011 at Pace’s Schaeberle Studio (41 Park Row; tenth floor) Thursday through Saturday at 8:00 pm, with weekend matinees on Saturday (2:00 pm) and Sunday (3:00 pm). Tickets: $12 for adults and $8 for students. To make reservations, e-mail pacenewmusicals@gmail.com

Pace University is staging a dramatic reading and sing-through this weekend of a new rock musical, “Factory Girls,” that recalls the history-making activism of young working women in the 1840s, who brought some of America’s first labor reforms to the textile mills of Lowell, Massachusetts… The result is dialog and song that are powerfully evocative of many of the same conflicts that still divide America today: social justice, financial inequality, and double-edged sword by which individuals working for a giant, impersonal corporation can feel both empowered and imprisoned.