Our students’ education in theatre doesn’t end when classes do! During this past summer, many of our theatre students had opportunities to gain real-world experience before coming back to the Department of Theatre and Dance. Check out what they’ve been up to!
Jamie Broadhead ’18 is a theatre major who spent the summer (and the semester before it) living in Arlington, VA and interning with the Federal Government, which was an amazing and fulfilling experience. On the weekends, she took a couple of road trips to places around Washington, D.C. with other interns and explored the city. Jamie also got to see a couple of shows at Shakespeare Theatre Company in D.C. and volunteered as a set designer for the Educational Theatre Company (ETC) in Richmond, VA, when the company did a production of Treasure Island at a local elementary school.
Ashleigh DiBenedetto ’20 is a theatre major who spent her summer working three jobs, including working as a stagehand at Jiffy Lube Live in Bristow, VA. Ashleigh’s job consisted of setting up and taking down the sets, instruments, video walls, speakers, and anything else the musical acts needed.
Kevin DiCicco ’18 is a theatre major that had the opportunity to work on sound design during his internship at Barter Theatre, in Abingdon, VA. There, Kevin worked with Tony Angelini, a professional Washington, D.C. based sound designer who has sound designed numerous UMW musicals. During the internship, Kevin assisted Tony on two of the theatre’s shows, The Cottage and Leaving Iowa. Kevin also created a sound design for the Barter Players performance of Cinderella.
Lauren Frautschi ’18 is a theatre major and arts administration minor who spent her summer interning with Keegan Theatre in Washington, D.C. The summer before, she got to work at the Folger Shakespeare Library, and loved being in the city so much that she wanted to get back in the game this summer. She worked with many people in the company, including the artistic director and the director of education outreach. Lauren also got to be a camp counselor at Keegan’s summer theatre kids camp for a couple of weeks, teaching children the many different aspects of theatre! She also helped out with their production of Big Fish, helping set up lights and straightening up the theatre for tech week. Overall, Lauren created numerous relationships that she hopes to maintain after she graduates.
Neal Gallini-Burdick ’19 is a theatre major with a minor in musical theatre and arts administration who had two great opportunities afforded to him thanks to Friends of Theatre. First, he was in Washington, D.C. for a month, performing in a new play at Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Sidney Harman Hall called God Is Dead and April’s Getting Married. Then, Neal spent the last half of the summer in New York at Atlantic Acting School’s Summer Intensive Program. Neal learned so much from his cast mates in D.C. and his teachers in New York, and is very excited to use his skills as he continues his career.
Lydia Hundley ’19 is a theatre major who participated in an event called New Voices for the Theatre, which she has worked at for 8 years. The event is an amazing process where high school student playwrights from all across Virginia compete to have one of 8 spots in the play festival. The shows are revised, rehearsed, and performed in a 2-week period and people from all over the the state come to see incredible new work. Another opportunity Lydia had was as a counselor for August Adventure, a theatre camp for ages 5-15. There, she had the chance to work with first graders, rehearsing Aristocats Jr. for two weeks, which was an incredible opportunity because it gave her the experience she needs to one day teach that grade.
Cynthia Mullins ’18 is a theatre major with a minor in musical theatre and arts administration that kept herself extremely productive with several theatre opportunities in Washington, D.C. The first of which was working with Studio Theatre as the Development Events Intern. Cynthia was responsible for coordinating with and overseeing all communications between Studio Theatre and the restaurant vendors for Studio Theatre’s annual summer Open House event, Taste of Studio. Cynthia was able to more than double the amount of vendors from the previous year with 75% of the vendors being new to the event. Her second internship was with Keegan Theatre. Cynthia primarily assisted with the educational initiatives including the Play-Rah-Kah program and the inaugural collaboration with Page to Stage. There she assisted with educating elementary school children in D.C. Public Schools on theatrical practices including rehearsing a play that they wrote. Lastly, Cynthia was very fortunate to have been able to work as a Box Office Associate for the Capital Fringe Festival. She assisted hundreds of patrons with their ticket sales to a vast number of different shows that premiered at the festival.
Alexander Rios ’18 is a theatre major with a minor in musical theatre, who began his summer working at the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá, Colombia, working in the US Military Group. There he assisted numerous military officers in fulfilling their duties for the US Mission in Colombia. The second half of his summer, Alexander attended a musical theatre intensive program at the New York Film Academy, where he delved deep into the art of musical theatre, focusing on strengthening his singing, acting and dancing abilities. While in New York, Alexander was also cast in a reading of a new musical, Express: An Immersive Musical, working alongside numerous New York musical theatre artists in developing a brand new musical.
Sam Rollin ’18 is a theatre major who worked on two shows with Cultural DC’s 10th annual Source Festival this summer. She was the Assistant Stage Manager for the feature presentation, Perfect Arrangement as well as the Stage Manager for the staged reading of a new play: Frelmetsch the Maneater.
Jacob Savage ’18 is a theatre major with a minor in arts administration that worked as a Marketing & Development Intern at NextStop Theatre in Herndon, VA. In addition to aiding with advertising campaigns and working at local festivals, he also had some first-hand experience by serving as house manager and an usher during their productions of Urinetown and A Grand Night for Singing.
Abraham Shaikh ’19 is a theatre major with a minor in musical theatre that was fortunate enough to spend two weeks in New York City, studying Musical Theatre at NYU Steinhart. During the program, he studied singing, acting, and dancing and saw three Broadway shows: Miss Saigon, Waitress, and Beautiful: The Carole King Musical! Next, Abraham performed as Cain/Japeth in Stagedoor Productions’ Children of Eden, in downtown Fredericksburg, and is now a huge fan of the show after working on it.
Carly Shapiro ’18 is a business administration major with a minor in arts administration who spent her summer as a marketing and development intern at Theater J in Washington D.C. Carly spent three months with the staff, and had many opportunities doing research, outreach, social media, and marketing.
Grace Weaver ’20 is a theatre major and arts administration minor who had the amazing opportunity to stage manage the City of Fairfax Theatre Company’s production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. She assisted the set designer with set construction as well. When Grace did not have rehearsals, she also had a part time job at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts in concessions, where she was able to expose herself even deeper to the arts.
Sasha Zabela ’18 is a theatre major who worked at the Theatre at Monmouth, Maine’s principal Shakespeare theatre. There, she worked in the Costume Shop as a Wardrobe Intern. From June to August, she worked with a costume shop team of four and one supervisor for wardrobe crew. The theatre’s summer season consisted of 6 separate shows with several different directors and designers. Sasha worked in the costume shop during the day, but when they were in their 6 back to back weeks of technical rehearsals (1 week per show) she would also be working on the wardrobe crew with her supervisor. Sasha’s summer was a ton of work, but she was still overjoyed to be there and work with other people dedicated to the career she’s pursuing.