Auditions open for ‘Rent’ at Perry-Mansfield | SteamboatToday.com

Auditions open for ‘Rent’ at Perry-Mansfield

Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School and Art Camp’s pre-professional program will perform “Rent” in July 2019.
Michael Staley

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Auditions for Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School and Camp’s production of “Rent” are open.

The six-week, residential program is part of Perry-Mansfield’s pre-professional intensive theater camp for students entering 10th grade through the first year of college and interested in pursuing a career in the arts. Tuition to the program is $6,250.

The production will be the “school edition” of Jonathan Larson’s 1994 Pulitzer Prize-winning musical.

The original script follows a group of impoverished artists in the East Village of Lower Manhattan as they work through crippling and art-inspiring issues of rising rent, homelessness, discrimination, changing relationships and failing health related to HIV/AIDS.

“(The school edition) is almost exactly the same as the original,” said Naomi Vara, who is involved with recruitment for dance and theater students. “It’s a little bit more accessible to students in terms of their acting and singing. And with the program being six weeks and residential, we’re able to spend so much time with the kids and involve dialogue and education about the issues of the subjects in the show.”

Vara noted the program will also incorporate speakers about the issues involved with the production.

“‘Rent’ is about community and individuals coming together and about love and hope,” Vara said. “There are so many wonderful things that can come out of that story for teenagers who are going through change in their lives.”

Auditions, either online or in person — held in several locations across the country — determine the group that will be part of the program. Once the 25 students accepted to the program arrive at Perry-Mansfield for camp June 15, auditions for specific roles of the production take place.

After an intensive period of classes during the day and rehearsals during evenings and weekends, the production opens on July 26 and 27 at Perry-Mansfield’s Julie Harris Theater.

“There’s going to be a lot of singing growth because the music is really challenging. There’s a lot of fun dancing, and there will be so much learning in the storytelling and subject matter,” Vara said. “It’s a triple-threat show. I think the students are going to grow across the board in such a great way.”

“I’d certainly encourage anyone interested to apply,” Co-Executive Director of Perry-Mansfield Toni Quick said. “Auditioning provides experience.”

Productions by pre-professional intensive dance/theater camps in past years have included “The Tempest,” “Spring Awakening,” “Music Man” and original works by Perry-Mansfield faculty.  

Auditions for “Rent” will be on a rolling basis until the program’s 25 spots are filled. Find more information at perry-mansfield.org.

To reach Julia Ben-Asher, call 970-871-4229, email jbenasher@SteamboatPilot.com or follow her on Twitter @juliabenasher.


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