July 26 – August 6, 2021
Monday – Friday, 10AM – 6PM
Ages 14 to 18
“The best acting training in the area. I would recommend it to anyone who is looking to really dive deep into acting and how it interacts with movement and voice.”
— Eli, Stage One Student (2016, 2017, 2018, 2020)
“I feel that Stage One has made me a more well-rounded artist. I would recommend this program to any serious, musical theatre performer.”
— Clare, Stage One Student (2020)
Stage One is not your typical musical theatre program. It is a two-week musical theatre workshop for the young, aspiring musical theatre student with an emphasis on reaching the individuals where they are. Stage One’s emphasis is on personalized, intimate training that helps each individual student reach their level best and helps them overcome their personal weaknesses.
This popular program provides in-depth experience in the world of professional musical theater. Throughout the two weeks, students hone their vocal, dance and acting skills under personalized, supportive instruction from a group of core faculty members, each a theatrical professional. In addition to daily training in acting, music and dance, Stage One also incorporates daily masterclasses from different DC theater professionals and local university faculty. With a different masterclass instructor every day, this is an incredible opportunity for high school students to work with award-winning actors, directors, choreographers, musicians, casting directors and university faculty. Masterclasses help students find a balanced approach between increasing theatrical skills and tackling the practical challenges of college auditions.
At the end of the two weeks, students are given the opportunity to share their experiences in an informal class demonstration for family and friends. There is no formal showcase. Every moment of Stage One is focused on pure training, enabling the students to give stronger performances long after the program has ended.
The Daily Schedule
Signature is continually updating its plans in response to the COVID-19 global pandemic. The schedule that has been created is one that could work on both a virtual platform and in a hybrid-model. In-person participation will be subject to strict health guidelines. Should Stage One move to a hybrid-model, you can choose to remain virtual-only with full participation in all sessions.
Last summer’s daily virtual schedule typically followed this model (under this model, the class is divided into two groups by age):
|Group A||Group B|
|9:45AM||Attendance and Announcements||Attendance and Announcements|
|10 – 11AM||BREAK||Dance|
|11 – 12PM||Dance||BREAK|
|12 – 1PM||BREAK||Voice|
|1 – 2PM||Voice||BREAK|
|2 – 3PM||BREAK||Acting|
|3 – 4PM||Acting||BREAK|
|4 – 5PM||Masterclass||Masterclass|
A typical in-person day’s schedule follows this model:
10AM – 12PM: Dance
12PM – 12:30PM: LUNCH
12:30PM – 2:30PM: Voice
2:30 – 2:45PM: BREAK
2:45PM – 4:45PM: Acting
4:45PM – 5PM: BREAK
5PM – 6PM: Masterclass
The final day of the program concludes with a one-hour informal class demonstration for friends and family.
Auditions for Stage One 2021 will take place on March 6, 2021 on Zoom from 10AM-1PM. Auditioning for Stage One is a three-step process:
1.) Register. Sign up for a slot and submit your registration information by clicking here.
2.) Vocal and Acting audition: Auditioning students need a prepared, memorized and contemporary one-minute monologue and a 32-bar musical theatre song. The song must be accompanied (you may use a live accompaniment or a pre-recorded track. If using a track, please play your track on a different device than the one you are running Zoom on.)
3.) Dance audition: The dance portion of the audition will be prerecorded. Click here to watch choreographer Dani Ebbin teach the routine. Practice with the video and when you are ready, film yourself in appropriate dance attire and in a space sufficient for movement performing the routine. Once you have a take that you are satisfied with, upload it as a YouTube video and send the video to firstname.lastname@example.org. When you upload your video, please make sure that it is uploaded as an “Unlisted” video and not as a “Private” video as several faculty members may view it.
Only applicants who fulfill all parts of the audition process will be considered.
Pre-Recorded Audition Option
If you cannot attend the live auditions on March 6, you may apply by submitting three separate pre-recorded audition videos:
Video 1: A prepared and memorized contemporary one-minute monologue.
Video 2: A 32-bar musical theater song (you may use a live accompaniment or a pre-recorded track. If using a track, please play your track on a different device than the one you are filming on.)
Video 3: A dance video. Click here to watch choreographer Dani Ebbin teach the routine. Practice with the video and when you are ready, film yourself in appropriate dance attire and in a space sufficient for movement performing the routine. Once you have a take that you are satisfied with, upload it as a YouTube video. When you upload your video, please make sure that it is uploaded as an “Unlisted” video and not as a “Private” video as several faculty members may view it.
Once you have created the three required videos, please upload them, along with a headshot and resume here.
Pre-recorded video auditions are due by March 8.
Tuition for Stage One 2021 will be $880. There is currently no fellowship assistance available for Stage One.
Have questions about Stage One?
Want to know if this program is right for you? Email us at email@example.com or call 571 527 1854 to learn more.
Instructors have included:
Acclaimed performers: Evan Casey, Susan Derry, Erin Driscoll, Joshua Morgan, Tracy Lynn Olivera, Nova Payton and Bobby Smith
Signature staff: Kelly Crandall d’Amboise, Matthew Gardiner, Eric Schaeffer, Matt Strote and David Zobell
Choreographers, Directors and Fight Choreographers: Kathleen Akerley, Joe Calarco, Pauline Grossman, Maurice Johnson, Casey Kaleba, Matt Reckeweg and Mallory Shear
Local music directors: Warren Freeman, Elisa Rosman and Bill Yanesh
University faculty: Melissa Flaim, Brian MacDonald and Jim Van Slyke