• Tracy Jordan

Tina has truly dedicated her life to the stage, working with some of the most celebrated Broadway directors & choreographers: Hal Prince, Tommy Tune, Jerry Mitchell, Gillian Lynne, Phyllida Lloyd, George Wolfe, Anthony Van Loss, to name a few. Tina originated the role, Donna Sheridan, in Mamma Mia! Las Vegas cast. She created two roles, Morgana/Bess Houdini, in three different spectacular productions of EFX! and EFX ALIVE! costarring opposite Michael Crawford (original cast), then Tommy Tune and followed by 80’s heartthrob Rick Springfield at the MGM Grand. Tina played the role of Madame Giry, traveling to 8 countries and 11 cities with the 25th Anniversary World Tour Phantom of the Opera and Phantom: The Las Vegas Spectacular at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas. Tina directed Closer Than Ever and Songs for A New World in Las Vegas. She is the inaugural recipient of the Leah & Jerome M. Fullenwider Award for the Dallas Summer Musicals High School Musical Theatre Awards as a Dallas native who has excelled in the entertainment world. For four years she has prepared the DSM Awards Best Actor & Actress winners to compete at the National High School Musical Theatre Awards. She is a musical theatre and acting instructor, and a private vocal coach specializing in college prep auditions and prescreens. She is a national judge for the Showstoppers Dance Competition and a special guest director and musical director on several productions at Shine Performing Arts Studio in Plano.

Since returning to Dallas, she has been sharing her experience and hard won expertise with young performers. We asked her to share her insights with aspiring performers:

"What if I told you that you have the power within you to succeed in whatever you set your mind to doing. That you are unique, authentic and one of a kind and that there has never been nor will there ever be another you. Would that make a difference in how you see yourself? How you see your future? As a young aspiring actress/singer I so wanted to please everyone, always second guessing what they, the directors, were looking for in a particular role. Sometimes, I would try so hard to please that I became transparent, obvious, and uncomfortable which made me fall short of my goal. I would lose my myself in the process and start listening to the naysayers instead of really listening to my inner voice, my intuition. Why did I give my power away, believing that I was no big deal, that I was just like everybody else? Well, one day, I decided to change my thought pattern and became more of a strategist. I started trusting my intuition, becoming my best worst critic, and I made a plan, a smart plan. You’ve heard the saying, knowledge is power, well there’s a lot of truth in that. I began to methodically prepare for my auditions, my callbacks, honing in on my technical and artistic skills and then applying them with confidence and believability. What magically happened was I became more relaxed, more confident, and absolutely more present in the moment. Those triumphant moments became a reality and I saw more and more opportunities come my way. And that is what I wish for you.

Has anyone told you that singing is a mental thing? It’s true. You can either psych yourself into singing it well or you can psych yourself out of it which causes a lot of heartache and disappointment. Preparing for college auditions or any audition for that matter, can be arduous but not if you have a plan, a well executed strategy. Being your worst critic is a plus too. Question yourself. What are your strengths? What are weaknesses? Strengthening your weaknesses and lead with your strengths is always a good decision.

Only concern yourself with what you can control. Did you know that being nervous and excited have the same physical attributes? When you say your nervous, it gives off a negative insecure vibe, whereas, if you say you are excited it gives off a positive and confident vibe. Every time you audition imagine that you are putting on your very own mini show. Seriously, think about it. I remember very clearly a producer saying out loud, “Entertain me! I want to be entertained!” So why not show them the best of what you have to offer. Show them your authentic self. Remember, this is a contract between you and them, it’s a two-way street. Invest in your future. Be fearless. Do your homework, find out everything you can about the college/s you are interested in. There are ways you can make yourself stand out. Make smart choices when choosing your material. And be prepared for the unexpected. Remember: Passion + Preparation + Persistence = Success!

Frank Langella, four-time Tony award winner, and one of my favorite actors in the world, has always inspired me throughout my career with one of his many profound and thought-provoking quotes. '

And the test for any actor is whether you stay at the table or go away.' '.. you must stay at the table, pick up the cards you’re dealt

and play them.' The odds are, that if you stay at that table long enough the house will eventually deal you a great hand! His words continue to inspire me to this very day. So…Never give up. Never give in. "

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  • Tracy Jordan

Today we are highlighting Florida Southern College, one of our inaugural participating schools in the National College Audition...

Here's a word from Christianne Roll, Associate Professor of Musical Theatre and Coordinator of Musical Theatre at Florida Southern:

"Our BFA in Musical Theatre curriculum is balanced between singing, dance, and acting, providing innovative, hands-on experiences to prepare for a professional career in musical theatre. The Florida Southern College campus, the largest single-site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture in the world, boasts three fully equipped performance facilities dedicated to undergraduate performance.  Our faculty has a great balance of professional and educational experience in the field of musical theatre. The head of our program, a member of Actors' Equity, is also a leading expert in the female belt voice, and our newest faculty member has countless professional music directing credits from productions all around the globe. This hands-on experience in the industry provides our faculty with current and imperative information to share with Florida Southern College students. Our department produces four mainstage productions per year, and all theatre students, including freshmen, have an opportunity to perform. Our program culminates in a New York City Industry showcase, and our graduates can be found on Broadway, national tours, regional theatres, cruise ships, theme parks, graduate programs, and educational theatre.

The Department of Theatre and Dance is comprised of BFA degrees in Musical Theatre, Dance, Acting, and Technical Theatre, as well as a BA in Theatre. Florida Southern College has 3,500 students, with a 14:1 student to teacher ratio."

We are delighted to have them in our line up of colleges and think they are a great option for M/T students. Here a link to a great article about the program:

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If you're saying to yourself, "I didn't know Ohio University had a musical theatre program," well don't fault yourself. They've got a brand new program and are striving to be cutting edge. Check out this article... TJ

In the fall of 2019 the Ohio University School of Theater will welcome its first class to an exciting new chapter of its undergraduate Theater Performance degree program. Two interrelated four-year degree tracks will now be offered in either acting or musical theater, with an innovative curricular approach designed to prepare students for the rapidly changing theater industry. The new musical theater track includes many first-of-its-kind degree components as well as the development of outside interests and skills, an Actor-Musicianship Certificate option and a new musical development program with OHIO's Tantrum Theater in collaboration with a NYC based theater. Both tracks are guided by an advisory panel of award-winning industry leaders. Curriculum The proposed musical theater curriculum revisions, currently going through final OHIO governance approval processes, include what is believed to be the first requirements for a course sequence on the history of rock music, as well as hip hop dance, for a B.F.A. program of this discipline. Other curricular opportunities include options for applied guitar courses and a semester abroad in London. U

nlike most musical theater programs, which do not allow room for double majors or minors, OHIO's program strongly encourages students to have a "specialization" outside of their performance coursework, which could take the form of a minor, certificate program, double major, or create-your-own course of study with elective credits. The acting program also includes integrated secondary specializations and curricular components. A notable specialization options for both tracks may include the newly approved Actor-Musicianship Undergraduate Certificate program, a 24-credit program designed for music and theater students to gain access to major-level coursework outside of their primary discipline, so as to develop the key interdisciplinary performance skills required in Broadway hits "The Band's Visit," "Bandstand," "School of Rock," "Million Dollar Quartet," "American Idiot," and many others. While B.A. and M.A. programs in Actor-Musicianship exist in the UK, OHIO's certificate is the first program of its kind in the US devoted to this discipline. Other recommended specialization options include minors in stage management, film, screenwriting and digital storytelling, dance performance and choreography, advertising and public relations and customer service, as well as certificates in performing arts health and wellness, social media and consumer research. New Musical Development Partnership The School of Theater has a longstanding commitment to new work development, including the annual Seabury Quinn, Jr. Playwrights' Festival, which celebrates OHIO's M.F.A. playwrights, as well as many collaborations with the School of Film. With the introduction of the musical theater track, OHIO and Tantrum Theater will partner with a well-known New York based company. Details will be announced later this spring. The collaboration will allow the organizations to workshop a new piece each January. The program will welcome three guest artists from the project's creative team for a two-week residency and workshop, including public performances of the show in development. Future OHIO mainstage productions of these works are also possible. Tantrum Theater is the resident professional theater company of the School of Theater. Founded in the fall of 2015 by Ohio University's College of Fine Arts, Tantrum has produced three critically acclaimed seasons through 2018, bringing visiting theater artists from across the country to work alongside Ohio University students, faculty and staff. B.F.A. in Theater Performance Advisory Panel The Theater Division welcomes members of a new advisory panel of industry leaders to the acting and musical theater tracks. These panelists will provide consultation and advice to the theater performance faculty and students to help remain on the cutting edge of the ever-changing business of theater. Members include Loni Ackerman (actor),Roger Bart(Tony Award-winning actor),John Cariani(Tony Award-nominated actor/playwright), Luke Frazier (Founder and Music Director - American Pops Orchestra, OHIO alumnus), Jonathan Freeman (Tony Award-nominated actor), Stephanie Klapper(casting director), Paul Michael(The Network NYC), Tom Morin (actor, CEO of Polish Your Passion, OHIO alumnus), Richard Oberacker(composer/music director, "Bandstand," Cirque du Soleil's "KA"), Emily Penick (Playwrights Horizons, OHIO alumnus), Bryan Perri(music director, "Jagged Little Pill," "Wicked," "Chaplin"), Sheri Sanders (Rock The Audition), Rick Sordelet (fight director/director), David Emerson Toney (actor/educator/playwright, OHIO alumnus) and Frank Wood(Tony Award-winning actor). The School of Theater is headed by Michael Lincoln. The theater performance faculty, led by Shelley Delaney, has designed the new B.F.A. in Theater Performance curriculum, and collaborates with the School of Music and the School of Dance to deliver the new musical theater track. The B.F.A. acting track is led by David Haugen and the new musical theater track is led by Alan Patrick Kenny. Other faculty members include Melissa Brobeck, Dennis Delaney, Dan Dennis, Brian Evans and Rebecca VerNooy. The School of Theater is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre and is a member school of the University Resident Theatre Association. Visit the School of Theater's website for further information:

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