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AMDA News

Tips On Promoting Yourself As A Performer

We recently sat down with AMDA alumna Karlee Squires to discuss ways of promoting yourself as a performer. Below are her tips for taking your performing arts career to the next level. [more]
1 month ago

New Audition App: Bookster Helps Actors Discover, Manage Theatre Auditions

To save actors from losing precious time—and sanity—Megan partnered with her husband Matthew Rybicki to release Bookster, a new app that redefines the convoluted audition process.

Available on the iTunes store, Bookster helps actors discover, manage and map their theatre auditions. Currently designed for iPhone users, Bookster offers a real-time list of daily auditions, which users can organize, take notes on and discuss with other actors via the app’s interface.

[more]
1 year ago

Marina Benedict Joins “Prison Break” Mini-Series on Fox

AMDA faculty Marina Benedict (“Flesh and Bone,” “Torchwood”) has been cast opposite returning stars Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell in Fox’s highly anticipated “Prison Break” revival, a nine-episode mini-series following the original award-winning action drama. [more]
1 year ago

Crafting Conflict: AMDA's stage combat program trains students in the art of violence

Training a machine gun platoon in the heart of Australia, AMDA stage combat instructor Charles Currier found himself face-to-face with executive producer Tom Hanks, who wished to speak to the military tech team about his vision for HBO’s Emmy-winning miniseries “The Pacific.” “If this doesn’t look like documentary footage shot in HD from 1945,” Hanks said, “I’m sending you all home. Your job is to make it look... [more]
1 year ago

Caissie Levy: From Fantine in Les Mis to Julie Nixon in First Daughter Suite

After 13 years of Broadway musicals, national tours and world premieres, Caissie Levy has landed more dream roles than most actors score in a lifetime: She’s played Maureen (Rent), Penny Pingleton (Hairspray), Elphaba (Wicked), Sheila (Hair), Molly (Ghost the Musical), and Fantine in the Broadway revival of Les Misérables. When not performing some of the greatest female roles known to Broadway, Levy’s out teaching students at AMDA New York, doing voiceovers for countless commercials or performing songs in concert from her debut solo album With You. [more]
1 year ago

Mad Love: Madeline Brewer Thrives in a "Bad Boyfriend" Industry

Sitting in AMDA’s studio with iced coffee in hand, Madeline Brewer recounts her nerve-wracking audition for Netflix mega-series “Orange is the New Black”: “I auditioned with shaking hands, staring directly into the camera—it was crazy. I left and called my mom and sobbed for 20 minutes: ‘I’m never doing that again. That was the worst audition of my life. I’m not cut out for this TV thing... I’m not doing it.’” [more]
1 year ago

HAMILTON: Christopher Jackson and Anthony Ramos Bring the Revolution to Broadway

Alexander Hamilton: 18th century politician, founding father, freestyle rapper. Wiping the dust off American history books, Lin-Manuel Miranda (In the Heights) created his new musical Hamilton, which transitioned from its sold-out Off-Broadway run to appear before Broadway audiences for the first time in August. The production stars AMDA alumni Christopher Jackson (George Washington) and Anthony Ramos (John Laurens/Philip Hamilton), both of whom originated their roles in the world premiere at New York City’s Public Theater. [more]
1 year ago

Be a Princess, Tour the World: Briana Rapa as Belle in Disney's Beauty and the Beast

Just months after earning her BFA in Music Theatre from AMDA, alumna Briana Rapa was cast as one of Disney’s most beloved characters: Belle in the international tour of Beauty and the Beast. Rapa landed the cherished role after receiving an audition from her agent, who signed her on after seeing her perform at AMDA... [more]
1 year ago

Cirque du Soleil Meets Broadway: Sheridan Mouawad Lands Paramour World Premiere

In a landmark production, Sheridan will perform on the Lyric Theatre stage in Paramour, a show-stopping musical marking the Broadway debut of entertainment titan Cirque du Soleil. Set in the golden age of 1940s Hollywood, Paramour spins the alluring tale of movie star Indigo, a glamorous beauty who finds herself trapped between love and silver screen stardom. [more]
1 year ago

‘Modern Family’ Star Jesse Tyler Ferguson Returns to Broadway in Fully Committed

Immense congratulations to alumnus Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who after eight years will return to perform on Broadway in Becky Mode’s culinary comedy Fully Committed! Jesse will play not one but 40 different characters of various ages, genders and ethnicities packed into one 90-minute performance. [more]
1 year ago

40 Alumni on Broadway: AMDA Among Top Theatre Schools

Shattering all previous records, AMDA alumni took Broadway by storm in 2015/6 with 40 graduates performing in 37 unique shows, landing AMDA once more among the nation’s top theatre schools! [more]
1 year ago

Working on a Cruise Ship: John Dempsey Stars at Sea in Royal Caribbean's Cats

Working on a cruise ship can be incredibly rewarding...and taxing. AMDA alum John Dempsey explains the pros and cons of cruise ship performance as he prepares to set sail on the largest cruise ship in the world for nine months to star in Cats. [more]
1 year ago

Lulu Lloyd Becomes First AMDA LA Graduate to Make Broadway Debut

Setting AMDA history, alumna Lulu Lloyd has become the first graduate from AMDA Los Angeles to make her Broadway debut! After graduating from the Studio Conservatory program, Lulu now rocks the Winter Garden Theatre as Swing and Assistant Dance Captain in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School of Rock, performing alongside fellow alumna Mamie Parris (Patty). [more]
1 year ago

Being An Out Gay Actor: Ben Baur Makes a Difference

“What was I going to do as a business major? I don’t even know. I had all these weird ideas of being an event planner.” [more]
1 year ago

Come See Barbara Schofield in Murray Mednick’s The Gary Plays!

We are pleased to announce that AMDA’s own Barbara Schofield (Broadway World Nomination, Best Director) will be performing as Monica in the Open Fist Theatre Company’s upcoming workshop production of Murray Mednick’s The Gary Plays! Set in Los Angeles, The Gary Plays take a look at life in 21st-century America, offering a profound, darkly humorous perspective on the convoluted relationships between people and the way we change over time. [more]
1 year ago

Make Your Broadway Ticket Worth Every Penny

Alumnus Tim Dolan’s tour company, Broadway Up Close, specializes in offering patrons a unique perspective on the 40 theatres that make up Broadway. After six years of successful tours , Broadway Up Close has garnered rave reviews from customers and four consecutive annual Certificates of Excellence from TripAdvisor. [more]
1 year ago

Douglas Nyback Transitions from Syfy's “Defiance” to “Hell on Wheels”

When your character dies after a firefight while trying to blow up a nuclear power station, it’s usually safe to assume you won’t be returning to the show. Not the case for AMDA alum Douglas Nyback, who, despite his brutal demise as Ben Daris on SyFy’s “Defiance” returned to play the recurring role Sgt. Frei Poole for the show’s final two seasons. Appropriately, gruesome death proved only a temporary deterrent for the committed actor: Nyback’s impressive versatility—as well as some pretty trippy alien prosthetics— made his unlikely return possible. With “Defiance” having wrapped its final season, that same dogged versatility has ensured his continued collaboration with the show’s creators, leading to some exciting opportunities. [more]
1 year ago

Kinky Boots National Tour Takes on J. Harrison Ghee as Leading Lola

The fab-in-drag musical sensation Kinky Boots continues its ever-growing list of starring AMDA alumni! After originally featuring as an Angel on Broadway, Kyle Taylor Parker (In The Heights), who played leading-lady Lola since the beginning of the first national tour, returned to the Al Hirschfeld Theatre on Broadway to replace Tony-winner Billy Porter for three months earlier this year. [more]
1 year ago

Nina Arianda Breaks Hearts (And Bones) in Broadway's Fool for Love

The Samuel J. Friedman Theatre’s stage reveals a seedy motel room in the Mojave Desert, the leaking A/C unit staining the wallpaper which peels over a narrow, hard mattress. The play centers around lovers May (Nina) and Eddie (Sam Rockwell), an on/off couple whose secrets from each other threaten to destroy them. [more]
1 year ago

Alumnae Tell Tale as Old as Time in Beauty and the Beast

Be an enchanted feather duster, see the world. Delighting audiences across the globe, AMDA alumnae are now performing in the national and world tours of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. [more]
1 year ago

‘Big Time Rush’ Star Books 10-Year-Old Viral Sensation for Comedy Show

Stephen Kramer Glickman, host of LA’s successful live talk show The Night Time Show, recently reached out to support 10-year-old internet sensation Saffron Herndon, who performed standup on Stephen’s show on October 14. [more]
1 year ago

Graduation Day to "42nd Street"

Taylore Burke, Kahlia Davis and Georgina Moore wasted no time starting their professional careers. All three dancers—who graduate from AMDA’s Conservatory Program this week—have landed the 42nd Street national tour, which starts rehearsals in August. And while it’s absolutely essential for performers to hone their skills, here we see again that learning and understanding the business of the performing arts is equally as important when it comes to landing jobs. The three tappers took a few minutes from their busy schedules to share a little about their AMDA experience and how they transitioned from students to paid professional dancers. [more]
2 years ago

Bringing Musical Theatre Training to Mexico City

From a young age, AMDA alumna Rosa Alicia (Azuara Hernandez) Delain knew she was destined for the theatre. After every show that her mother took her to see, she would return home to re-enact each scene. There was “the  time we went to see an adaptation of Swan Lake for kids,” she recalled, “and all I did the whole week was repeat all the lines from the show that I could remember. I was four!” [more]
2 years ago

Julia Konrad: Lessons from the Intersection of Art and Life

College graduates face the daunting task of finding a job that is not only fulfilling, but sustainable, the ultimate test to any young person’s perseverance. Now imagine the same struggle, but with the added layer of obstacles that immigrants face in the United States. This journey is all too familiar for Brazil native and AMDA alumna Julia Konrad (Viezzer), who attended AMDA New York to follow her dreams of being an actress. Juggling work and studies while pursuing her passion, Julia proved that she was up to the challenge; she landed her first major role in a film, straight out of school. [more]
2 years ago

Making a Difference

When Jesse Karlan was seven years old, her best friend was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, a degenerative lung and digestive disease. Jesse immediately took action at a young age and created a musical revue, Sing For A Cure, to raise money for cystic fibrosis research. She then sold tickets to her revue, along with three CDs she recorded at Universal Music, in order to raise money toward finding a cure. Today, you can find Jesse’s songs on iTunes, Rhapsody and Napster, with all proceeds going to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Since her first performance of Sing For A Cure, she has raised over $100,000. [more]
2 years ago

AMDA Alumni Spring Up On Broadway In 2015

Broadway is humming feverishly this spring with rousing new musicals and plays. And many AMDA alumni are part of the frenzy. From hilarious revivals to creatively adapted movies, nine Broadway shows currently have AMDA alumni—four of which will officially open this April. [more]
2 years ago

From Broadway to Film and TV Star

Known for her Tony Award-winning performance as Vanda in the 2012 Broadway production of Venus in Fur, Nina Arianda is now sought after throughout the entertainment industry - landing diverse roles on TV and in film as well. [more]
2 years ago

Taking on History and Family

On a recent WGN Radio interview, Trai Byers discusses his role as James Forman, in the highly acclaimed movie Selma. Byers explains that Foreman, an influential activist who served as executive secretary of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), "didn’t really care for the one-man movement.” He continues, “If the man dies, will the movement die?” [more]
2 years ago

Marina Benedict joins "Flesh and Bone" on Starz!

Congratulations to AMDA Los Angeles Dance Department Co-Chair  Marina Benedict ("Burn Notice," "Torchwood," "ER") who has been tapped to join Starz’s new drama series "Flesh and Bone" from Emmy Award winning writer and executive producer Moira Walley-Beckett ("Breaking Bad") and Academy Award Nominated Executive producer Lawrence Bender (Pulp Fiction, Inglorious Bastards). [more]
3 years ago

Alumnus Ray Fisher cast as Cyborg in upcoming Batman vs.Superman film!

AMDA alumnus Ray Fisher was just announced to play the role of Cyborg in the upcoming Warner Bros. film Batman vs. Superman! The sequel to 2013's Man of Steel features a cast of A-list stars including Henry Cavill, Ben Affleck, Amy Adams and Jesse Eisenberg. Cyborg (whose not-so-secret identity is Victor Stone) is a half man/half machine superhero and member of the Justice League in the DC Comics series on which the film is based. The film will be the first in a series of films planned around the Justice League characters, landing Ray the potential to be featured in many more films to come. The first film of the series is scheduled to be released in theaters in Spring 2016. [more]
3 years ago

Congratulations to AMDA Alumni Nominated for Drama League Awards!

AMDA congratulates all of our alumni nominated for Drama League Awards! Alumnus Christopher Sieber announced the award nominations alongside actress Judith Light. Alumnus Jesse Tyler Ferguson will host the ceremony in New York on May 16, 2014. The Drama League Awards are the oldest theatrical awards in America, chosen by thousands of audience members who attend Broadway and off-Broadway productions each year. [more]
3 years ago

Jason Derulo's new album, "Talk Dirty," releases this week!

Congratulations to AMDA alumnus Jason Derulo on this week's release of his third album, Talk Dirty, and the accompanying fanfare of press and appearances. Jason was featured on the Yahoo homepage and performed an iheartradio release concert. [more]
3 years ago

Alumnus Nathan Reid forms Reinventing Films and Produces "The Jokester" film series

Nathan Reid, an AMDA graduate, has been acting, writing, and producing films for over 10 years. In 2004, Nathan wrote and sold his first script, Snowman Assassin. In 2005, he executive produced and starred in his first film Old Man Music, starring Geoffrey Lewis and J.A. Preston, which won the Gold Metal for Excellence at the Park City Music Festival and various other awards of recognition. In 2008, Nathan created Prey: The Beginning; a comic book franchise. The first issue was listed #3 in the top ten sales ranking for Independent comics. In 2013, Nathan formed Reinventing Films with producing partner Jodie Bentley, and then merged with Moving Pictures Media Group in early 2014. RF and MPMG have slates of films in all stages of production and look forward to their growing partnership. [more]
3 years ago

AMDA LA Announces Jason Alexander as Graduation Speaker!

AMDA LA is beyond thrilled to welcome Jason Alexander as guest speaker for our coming graduation ceremony! [more]
3 years ago

Tony Winning Jim Dale to Speak at AMDA NY Graduation

AMDA New York is proud to announce Tony Award-winning actor Jim Dale as speaker for the upcoming AMDA graduation ceremony! [more]
3 years ago

AMDA Alumna Theresa Murray Talks About Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival

In the last two years, AMDA alumnae Theresa Murray and Julie Furrer both received full scholarships to dance with the esteemed Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival. The festival takes place every summer in the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts and it is recognized worldwide as a "hub and mecca of dancing" (TIME Magazine). It offers training to dancers with the opportunity to interact and work with top dance companies and choreographers, over 200 free performances, speakers and a range of events. Dance icon, Mikhail Baryshnikov, called it "one of America's most precious cultural assets." The Jacob's Pillow website states, " 'The Pillow' is a treasured 220-acre National Historic Landmark, a recipient of the prestigious National Medal of Arts, and home to America's longest-running international dance festival." One might simply call it the premiere cultural center for dance. [more]
3 years ago

Alumnus Kyle Scatliffe wins over the critics in The Scottsboro Boys!

Alumnus Kyle Scatliffe is currently starring in the U.K. premiere production of Kander and Ebb's The Scottsboro Boys, directed by Susan Stroman, at The Young Vic Theatre on London's West End. [more]
3 years ago

Alumnus Ben Cotton lands role in "Once Upon A Time: Wonderland" on ABC

AMDA graduate Ben Cotton will play the recurring role of Tweedle Dum in "Once Upon A Time: Wonderland," the new ABC TV series debuting October 10, 2013. [more]
3 years ago

Alumnus Lee Tergesen to speak at AMDA NY Summer 2013 Graduation

Alumnus Lee Tergesen will speak at the Graduation Ceremony for AMDA New York's Summer 2013 graduating class, on Saturday October 5, 2013. [more]
3 years ago

Award Winning Composer and Lyricist Scott Evan Davis

Last year the Huffington Post named him one of the top five emerging composers to know and hear and Broadway World recently said, “In a period of two years on the New York scene, Davis's music has become lauded and sought after internationally." [more]
4 years ago

Alumna Vasthy Mompoint in her 5th Broadway Show!

Congratulations to AMDA alumna Vasthy Mompoint who is currently in the new musical Soul Doctor, her 5th Broadway show! Vasthy plays the role of the blind guitarist and is understudy for the lead role of Nina Simone. Prior to Soul Doctor, Vasthy was a featured dancer/ensemble in Ghost the Musical on Broadway. Additional Broadway credits include: Good Vibrations, Hot Feat and Mary Poppins. [more]
4 years ago

Gabriela Garcia: AMDA Alumna, Miss Tarzana and USC MFA Grad Student

We were thrilled to catch up with our recent AMDA alumna Gabriela Garcia who has been a very busy lady since graduating with her BFA in Acting from AMDA in Fall 2012. Gabriela is currently the reigning Miss Tarzana (a city suburb of Los Angeles) and will soon be leaving to compete for the Miss California title. She will also be starting at USC this fall where she will be working toward her MFA degree. Gabriela grew up in Lancaster, California, which surprisingly enough was also Judy Garland’s hometown – a little fact that she likes to think of as good luck! [more]
4 years ago

AMDA Spotlight Magazine is All New and Available Online!

AMDA is proud to announce the premiere issue of our revamped magazine, Spotlight. As "The Magazine of the AMDA Community," Spotlight features campus news and events, photo galleries, informative features and interviews, and updates on alumni and faculty. [more]
4 years ago

AMDA Guest Speakers Nominated for Awards!

AMDA would like to congratulate all of our recent New York campus guest speakers who are nominated for Tony Awards and Drama Desk Awards! [more]
4 years ago

AMDA LA Student in Spiegel Magazine

AMDA LA acting student Jana Nawartschi is featured in the new issue of the German magazine Spiegel! Jana talks about what the experience was like for her below. [more]
4 years ago

8 Ways the AMDA Admissions Process Can Help Prepare You for the Performance Industry

At AMDA, our goal is to prepare our students for a rewarding career in the performance industry. To achieve this, much of the way we operate mirrors the experience you will have when you enter the industry as a professional. Our application and audition process is no exception! [more]
4 years ago

AMDA LA Stage Combat Skills Proficiency Test Program

AMDA LA Stage Combat Department works to train AMDA students and alumni in a variety of fight techniques as part of a top notch program that is recognized by the internationally renowned Society of American Fight Directors. In addition to our current AMDA students, any AMDA alumnus who has taken up to Stage Combat 3 is welcome to submit him or herself for the opportunity to come back and prepare for the Skills Proficiency Test with AMDA faculty Lacy Altwine. [more]
4 years ago

Alumnus Justin Key Talks Entrepreneurship & Networking

AMDA Alumnus Justin Key is an actor, a mathematician and an entrepreneur. He will co-star in an upcoming production with Marla Gibbs from "The Jeffersons" and "227", Chico Brenneman from "Half and Half" and many others. He is also the face of Walmart, and co-starred on "8 Days a Week" on BET, a sitcom about young moguls in the making. Justin recently spoke about his experiences to our alumni at our most recent Alumni Workshop day in Los Angeles. We asked him to be a guest blogger so we could share his insight with all of our AMDA community. [more]
4 years ago

Harry Groener to speak at AMDA LA Fall Graduation!

We are  honored to announce Harry Groener as our AMDA LA Fall Graduation speaker. One of America’s most versatile and respected actors, Harry Groener’s brilliant career spans film, television and theatre. His debut Broadway performance in a revival of Rogers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! earned him the prestigious New York Theatre World Award as well as Drama Desk and Tony Award nominations. Two more Tony nominations followed for his roles as Munkustrap in the original Broadway production of Cats and his performance as song and dance man Bobby Child in Crazy For You. [more]
4 years ago

AMDA Alumni in "Rock of Ages" National Tour

AMDA congratulates our alumni starring in the Rock of Ages National Tour! [more]
4 years ago

Brett Davern's TV show "Awkward" Wins Peoples Choice Award!

Congratulations to AMDA alumnus Brett Davern on his People's Choice Award! His show "Awkward" took home the award for "Favorite Cable TV Comedy"! Brett stars as Jake Rosatti in the MTV show which is in its third season. [more]
4 years ago

Brian Burke: From Performer to Director

AMDA salutes alumnus Brian Burke! Brian graduated from AMDA and went straight into performing, but soon after found his calling as a successful choreographer and a director. Brian is now the Creative Director for the "X Factor UK ", as well as Director of the recent Il Divo "Wicked Game" tour, "America's Got Talent" and "Britain's Got Talent". We recently spoke with Brian and asked him to share his personal experience and how he went from performing to directing in such a high profile arena. [more]
4 years ago

Alumna Becca Tobin Joins "Glee"!

Congratulations to AMDA alumna Becca Tobin who joins the cast of "Glee" on Fox TV as Kitty, the newest cheerleader! Becca is from Marietta, Georgia. She too was a cheerleader in middle school before she went on to study dance. Becca graduated from AMDA in 2005, after which she performed in Rock of Ages on Broadway and the National Tour, and toured with the Trans-Siberian orchestra. "Glee" is Becca's TV debut! [more]
4 years ago

Alumnus Donovan Jones Finds His Balance with Rebecca Peache on "America's Got Talent"!

AMDA alumnus Donovan Jones and his wife Rebecca Peache recently performed on America's Got Talent" where they made it to the semi-finals with their breathtaking acrobatic and aerial routines. [more]
5 years ago

Alumnus Michael Ian Cedar Finds His Passion In Producing

When alumnus Michael Ian Cedar graduated from AMDA he took a part in the National Tour of Fiddler on the Roof. After his initial elation and 10 performances in, Michael walked into the Company Manager’s office and declared “I’m not sure this gig is for me, how do I learn how to do your job”? Michael was offered the Assistant Manager position and says he felt like Dori in Finding Nemo, completely oblivious but utterly in his element. Michael is now a successful producer at StarQuest International and is also producing a concert of Mercy Street through his own production company Ask Yourself Productions. [more]
5 years ago

Cabaret and Charity with Marti Gould Cummings

AMDA alumnus Marti Gould Cummings is a New York cabaret performer who has quickly made a name for himself. He currently hosts four shows a week in the city, bringing in some of the most sought after Broadway Stars as guests. After Proposition 8 was passed in California (a ballot proposition elimating the rights of same sex couples to marry), Marti co-founded the organization Broadway Speaks OUT to create a forum for those on Broadway to speak out on behalf of the LGBT community. Marti has interviewed a bevy of stars for Broadway Speaks OUT including Bette Midler and Rosie O'Donnell, and has produced and hosted several successful fundraisers. In a relatively short period of time on the scene, Marti has carved out a successful career for himself. We talked to Marti to get his take on the business and find out what it takes to set yourself apart in a sea of performers. [more]
5 years ago

Alumna Mary Knickle takes on new musical Morgan Le Fay

AMDA alumna Mary Knickle has been a performer, an accomplished musician and now as a composer, she has written and produced her first musical based upon the legend of Morgan Le Fay. Maritime Concert Opera in Halifax, Canada presented the first workshop performance o Morgan Le Fay featuring 13 cast members in November of 2011. We caught up with Mary to talk to her about her time as a student at AMDA along with her inspiration for creating a new Celtic musical and where she will go with it next. [more]
5 years ago

AMDA Alumna Jo Jo Graham Founds Dancing Classrooms in her hometown!

AMDA salutes alumna Jo Jo Graham who is the Founding Executive Director of Dancing Classrooms in Northeast Ohio. Jo Jo was hired by Dancing Classrooms in NYC during her 4th semester at AMDA six years ago. She quickly found success within the non-profit organization which brings dance into elementary and middle school classrooms around the country. Jo Jo worked her way up to launch a new branch of Dancing Classrooms in Northeast Ohio (her hometown), now in its fourth year of success! In addition to her role as Executive Director for Dancing Classrooms Northeast Ohio, Jojo is also the Director of the Dancing Classrooms Weekend Academy and was also recognized as Teacher of the Year, for her work within the classroom. [more]
5 years ago

AMDA Alumnus Jason Bergund Best-Selling Author!

AMDA celebrates alumnus Jason Bergund, best-selling author! Jason has written 8 books with his writing partner and wife Beverly West, including Please Don't Feed the Daisy: Living, Loving, and Losing Weight with the World's Hungriest Dog, Pug Therapy: Finding Happiness, One Pug at a Time and What Pets Do While You're at Work. Yes, he often writes about his real life adventures with his family of beloved dogs. [more]
5 years ago

Faculty Billy Johnstone Directs in Brazil!

AMDA Congratulates Faculty member Billy Johnstone on his international directorial debut directing the Brazilian premiere of FAME the Musical at the Teatro Frei Caneca in São Paulo! Billy had the opportunity to work with several AMDA alumni in Brazil, including Bia Lucci and Carina Gregorio. We spoke with him to get a feel for what it was like to direct a production in Brazil. [more]
5 years ago

AMDA Alumni in Upcoming TV Shows!

AMDA Celebrates Our Alumni in New and Upcoming TV Shows: Bailey Buntain, Tanya Memme, Lee Tergesen, Natalie Zea and Jake Speck! [more]
5 years ago

Alumnus Turned Filmmaker Takes Miss D to Short Film Corner at Cannes

AMDA alumnus Stefan Blomquist came to the AMDA New York campus all the way from Sweden to study and become a performer. After graduation, Stefan went on to pursue photography and then film. He formed his own production company, IDA, with two fellow AMDA alumni. Their first short film, MISS D, will premiere at the Short Film Corner at the Cannes Film Festival. We spoke to Stefan just as he arrived at Cannes to ask him how he made the leap from performing to making films? [more]
5 years ago

Victoria Mallory and Kurt Peterson Reunite for "When Everything Was Possible" April 29th in NYC!

AMDA alumni Victoria Mallory and Kurt Peterson met while attending AMDA New York in the 1960's.  In the summer of 1968 Victoria and Kurt were cast, from hundreds of hopefuls, by Leonard Bernstein and Richard Rodgers, as Maria and Tony in the first major revival of West Side Story at Lincoln Center. Both went on to have phenomenal careers and their story has become that of Broadway legend. [more]
5 years ago

The Tale of Two Witches and AMDA!

It is no mystery why Wicked is one of the most popular musicals in history, going strong on Broadway for nine years, on London’s West End for five years, with five additional North American seated productions, including two national tours currently crisscrossing the country, as well as several international productions in Japan, Germany and Australia. Wicked has won over 35 major awards, including three Tony Awards and a Grammy Award, with Entertainment Weekly declaring it “The Best Musical of the Decade” and Variety concurring that it is “a cultural phenomenon.” AMDA has had eleven alumni perform in Wicked thus far. [more]
5 years ago

Alumni Jennifer Garza Finds Her Voice and Yours!

Jennifer Garza graduated from the AMDA NYC Integrated program in Spring 2008. Upon graduation, Jennifer realized her passion was in voice and speech work. She traveled to London to continue her studies at the Central School of Speech and Drama at the University of London, while also teaching Shakespeare, phonetics, accents and voice and speech at several local colleges. After receiving her MFA, Jennifer has returned to NYC and is now teaching and consulting privately with actors who want further VPS training, accent/dialect work, or monologue coaching. She specializes in Shakespearean speech. AMDA students might recognize her from some of their warm-ups in Joe Goscinski’s VPS classes. We spoke with Jennifer to find out more about how she came to her path in VPS education. [more]
5 years ago

Frank Francisco Stars In The First Production of "Rent" In The Dominican Republic!

Frank Francisco, an AMDA Fall 2010 graduate, recently landed one of his dream roles playing the part of Angel in the first production of RENT to be performed in the Dominican Republic. Frank is excited to return to his hometown of Santo Domingo, DR, where he lived until the age of 14.  The show will be performed at El Palacio de Bellas Artes (The Palace of Fine Arts), one of the most prestigious theatres on the island, a breathtaking and magical theatre that Frank recalls being just out of reach when he was young. Well within his reach now, RENT will open for the first time in Santo Domingo on November 11th. Frank will take the stage alongside several Dominican celebrities such as Javier Gurllon and Dominican rock singer Tony Almont from “Toque Profundo.” [more]
5 years ago

Melissa Johnston finds Theatre & Film Alive and Flourishing in Detroit

Melissa Johnston graduated from AMDA in 2009. Since then she has appeared in the feature films Barely Legal (just released on DVD), and Water for Elephants. Recently Melissa moved back to her hometown of Detroit, Michigan so she could be close to her ailing grandmother. She has been working steadily in regional theatre in the city, acting in two plays, Caught Up, a family drama, and The Corridor, an urban drama about addiction. The latter is a trilogy of plays that has a matching set of films that go into production early next year. She is also acting for Made in Peril Productions, which produces superhero short films, and works as the spokesmodel for Rink Warriors, a company that hosts roller derby events. [more]
5 years ago

AMDA Salutes Faculty Member and Music Director Jay Dias!

Congratulations to AMDA faculty member Jay Dias! Jay has been hard at work restoring the original orchestrations for Gypsy at the Lyric Stage in Dallas, featuring a 39 piece orchestra playing the full orchestrations for the first time since the original Broadway production starring Ethel Merman ended in 1961. The rave reviews for Gypsy are now coming in droves (see below) and Jay has been honored by the Dallas Fort Worth Theatre Critics Forum as the Best of the 2010-'11 Season: Jay Dias as Outstanding Creative Contribution as Music Director for his 2010-'11 season work with Lyric Stage. [more]
5 years ago

And the Emmy Award goes to..."Modern Family"!

Congratulations to AMDA Alum Jesse Tyler Ferguson and the entire cast and crew of ABC's "Modern Family" for taking home the Best Comedy Series Emmy Award for the second year in a row! Overall "Modern Family" took home a total of five Emmy awards this year including... [more]
5 years ago

AMDA Alum Kristin Towers Rowles Wins 4 StageSceneLA Awards!

AMDA Congratulates Alum Kristin Towers Rowles for winning 4 Awards from StageSceneLA!!!

*Best Breakthrough Musical Theatre Performer for 2010-2011

*Best Leading Actress for Dot in Sunday in the Park with George

*TWO Outstanding Performances by a Lead Actress  - one for playing Lilli in Kiss Me Kate and one for playing Winifred in Once Upon a Mattress

[more]
6 years ago

Larissa Laurel on Discovering her "True North"

The road less traveled is often the best way to reach your destination. From performing on stage, television and in national commercials, to finding success as a model, AMDA alum Larissa Laurel discovered her ‘true north’ in the bright lights of New York City. [more]
6 years ago

Chris Jackson Nominated for Two Daytime Emmys

Congratulations to AMDA alum Chris Jackson on his two Daytime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Original Song. Chris is nominated as lyricist for "What I Am" and as composer and lyricist for "Rakhi Road," both from Sesame Street. The ever-popular children's show once again dominates the Daytime Emmys with 16 nominations. [more]
6 years ago

Jason Wise Lands the Role He Was Destined For

Growing up in a small town in upstate New York, 10 year old Jason Wise saw a TV commercial that would change his life. It was for a touring production of Cats, and he was hooked. After begging his mother for tickets, she relented and Jason was able to go. Afterward, he approached a cast member outside the stage door, letting him how badly he wanted to be in show business. The actor gave him some sage advice: “If you follow your heart and work hard, your dreams will come true.” [more]
6 years ago

CLIFFORD BANAGALE IS GOING TO CANNES

LA Alum Clifford Bangale (Integrated Program 2006) will be attending the premiere of “Busong.” The movie is the centerpiece of the Director’s Fortnight program at the Cannes Film Festival. Clifford stars as Aris in the movie reported to be the first film ever made in Palawan, a language spoken by native Filipinos on the island of the same name. But you may crack up when you remember him from his quirky role as Diesel, the lover of Sacha Baron Cohen in the movie “Bruno.” He’s also shared the stage with Alfred Molina and Tony Shalhoub in “It’s a Wonderful Life” at the Pasadena Playhouse. [more]
6 years ago

Nina Arianda Strikes Broadway Gold

What a way to culminate your debut performance on Broadway—with a Drama League, a Drama Desk, an Outer Critics Circle and (biggest of all) a Tony nomination for her role as Billie Dawn in "Born Yesterday." New York Times theatre critic Charles Isherwood wrote of Nina Arianda’s performance, “With her luscious pout and sweep of peroxide curls, Ms. Arianda banishes Holliday’s pop-eyed, chirpy naïveté to evoke the surly molls of 1930s gangster flicks. Her Billie Dawn, streetwise and complacent in her illiteracy, is like a cross between Jean Harlow at her tough-blondest and the pop singer Cyndi Lauper, with her Queens-bred rasp.” [more]
6 years ago

Chryssie Whitehead in Sondheim's "Company"

AMDA NY alum and current AMDA LA Dance faculty member Chryssie Whitehead will be featured in the New York Philharmonic’s concert presentation of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth’s Company, which is being filmed for movie theatre screenings this June. Chryssie appears alongside a star-studded cast headed by Neil Patrick Harris and including Patti Lupone, Stephen Colbert, Christina Hendricks and Jon Cryer. [more]
6 years ago

Congratulations to Maria Sciorillo

Congratulations to AMDA LA alumni Maria Sciorillo who won Miss Philadelphia on the 90th anniversary of the pageant. Her voice and vision for better schools helped Sciorillo earn the title. The Miss Philadelphia Pageant has grown to be one of the most successful and largest scholarship providers of any local pageant in the Miss America system. [more]
6 years ago

Congratulations to Tyne Daly

Congratulations to AMDA alumni Tyne Daly for winning a Bistro Award! The 26th Annual Bistro Awards will be held April 26 at Gotham Comedy Club. Edie Cowan will direct the evening, which will be hosted by comedian and actor Jim David. [more]
6 years ago

Christopher Sieber to Star in La Cage aux Folles

Two time Tony Nominee and AMDA Alum Christopher Sieber will star as George in the Tony Award-winning revival of La Cage aux Folles at the Longacre Theatre. [more]
6 years ago

Sarah Stiles to Star in Road to Qatar!

AMDA Alum Sarah Stiles will star as Nazirah in the new musical comedy Road to Qatar! The York Theatre Company's upcoming production will begin previews Off-Broadway on January 25th. [more]
6 years ago

Caissie levy to star in Ghost The Musical

AMDA Grad Caissie Levy is set to star in the new production of Ghost the Musical. Levy will play the lead role of Molly alongside Richard Fleeshman. Ghost The Musical will open at the Piccadilly Theatre in London on June 22, 2011. [more]
6 years ago

Sam Underwood in Equus with Alec Baldwin

Sam Underwood (2007 AMDA Grad) just finished performing at the Guild Hall in East Hampton, NY, as Alan Strang in Equus opposite Alec Baldwin to rave reviews. [more]
6 years ago