Friday, June 24, 2011

Day 2: Rehearsal and Planet Hollywood and "The Addams Family" and more!

Day 2 started off like just any other day in the life of a high school student. All 50 participants woke up, showered, brushed their teeth, combed their hair and were out the door in less than a New York minute. The difference was that before this day ended these 50 bright-eyed hopefuls would have lunched with a Broadway star, dined in Times Square and met the cast of a hit Broadway premiere, including one of Broadway's most legendary performers. Oh, and they also spent hours rehearsing for the biggest show of their lives.

After a full morning of solo coaching with NYU faculty members including a Tony Award-winner (Broadway's original "Sweeney Todd,") and two Tony Award nominees, the kids gathered for lunch with the star of Broadway's "Priscilla, Queen of the Desert" Nick Adams, for a candid discussion about what it takes to make it in show biz. Nick's advice? If you can't imagine doing anything but singing and dancing your way through life, then do it!

Lunch was followed by four more hours of coaching and choreography for Monday's show before the buses were loaded and everyone was off to Planet Hollywood in the heart of Times Square. Surrounded by priceless Broadway and Hollywood artifacts the participants had a chance to relax and enjoy a meal with their new-found friends. One table even erupted in an impromptu (and beautiful) rendition of "Happy Birthday" to one participant's lucky best bud who called in to check from their hometown.

Following dinner the group headed over to the gorgeous Lunt-Fontanne Theatre for "The Addams Family." After the curtain came down and the applause subsided everyone headed to the front of the Orchestra section for an exclusive talk-back session with cast members including Broadway veteran Bebe Neuwirth! Bebe and company talked about their respective roads to success and how important it is to stay true to oneself and pursue your dreams! It was a tough night to sleep after the excitement of the day, but there is a lot of work ahead and lights were out by midnight.


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