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Northern Stage is thrilled to introduce Boot Camp, a program designed to nurture young theater artists by providing in-depth training and mentorship for high school juniors, seniors, and recent graduates who want to pursue a career in the arts. With support from the Pussycat Foundation and created to honor the philanthropic and creative spirits of Helen Gurley Brown and David Brown, Boot Camp serves young artists who lack the resources to pursue professional-level arts training. Admission to colleges, BFA theater programs, and performing arts conservatories are highly competitive, and Boot Camp seeks to level the playing field by preparing students to compete at the highest level for continued arts and performance studies.

Run by Northern Stage’s Director of Education Eric Love, Boot Camp provides personalized training tailored to each student’s unique capabilities and aspirations, as well as assistance with college admission and financial aid applications. Boot Camp Cadets receive one-on-one training and mentorship from professional theater artists, participate in group master classes, and perform with Northern Stage’s Youth Ensemble Studio and Summer Musical Theater Intensive. In addition to these opportunities, Boot Camp Apprentices also receive training in theater administration and production while working part time in the Northern Stage offices. Included in the Boot Camp program is a trip to New York to experience Broadway productions and participate in the National Unified Auditions, where Cadets and Apprentices are seen by top universities. Boot Camp Director Eric Love says, “A life in the arts is a thrilling journey. For students who know this is the life they want, Boot Camp will turn their first steps into leaps toward the future.”

Boot Camp is currently invitation-only and just began its second year of a two-year beta program. This past year’s inaugural Boot Camp Company included Cadets James Bryan, Anna Caccavaro, Margaret Finley, Alia Gonzales, Lily Magoon, Kyle Mason, Emily Masteller, and David Stark and Apprentices Grace Davis and Rylee Pauling. With weekly voice and dance lessons, monthly master classes, audition preparation, and more, this rigorous program requires significant time and energy from the students. In the first year, all seven seniors/recent graduates were accepted into college theater programs.

What our 2017-18 Boot Camp Company has to say about the program…

“Boot Camp gave me all the opportunity and just asked me to give effort and have discipline,” -David Stark, 2017-18 Boot Camp Cadet

“Getting accepted into college immediately after my first audition in the city was the most phenomenal feeling in the world,” -Emmy Masteller, 2017-18 Boot Camp Cadet

“For the first time I am excited for what my future holds.” -Rylee Pauling, 2017-18 Boot Camp Apprentice

“Boot Camp is the best thing that has ever happened to me,” -Kyle Mason, 2017-18 Boot Camp Cadet

The 2018-19 Boot Camp Company is comprised of returning Cadets Margaret Finley, Alia Gonzales, and Lily Magoon, joined by Shane Boucher, Hayden Christensen, Ella Falcone, Samantha Gibbs, Tommy Page, Sydney Read, and Ana Laura Santana and Apprentice Marissa Montagno. Northern Stage is thrilled to continue this intensive program as part of their mission to change lives, one story at a time.

In collaboration with Northern Stage, the New London Barn Playhouse will offer “Boot Camp at the Barn.” Run by Program Manager Sarah Case, students perform in the Barn’s Junior Intern Company and are given mentorship and training focused on audition and college preparation. The Barn’s summer activity offers a unique opportunity to work closely with the extraordinary emerging artists who make up the renowned Barn Intern Company. These artists are often in the most competitive theater training programs in the country, and they offer an immediate and important perspective on theater training. “The Barn Playhouse is the perfect collaborator for Boot Camp,” says Northern Stage Producing Artistic Director Carol Dunne.  “It IS a Boot Camp for brilliant young artists. For our high schoolers and recent graduates, being mentored by those who are doing it now is an extraordinary experience.”

Fore more information about the program or how to apply, contact Director of Education Eric Love at elove@northernstage.org.