Auditions begin May 24 for the new Young at Arts Summer Intensive program for teenagers who are passionate and serious about honing their craft, whether it is acting, singing, dancing or playing an instrument.
The Cayman National Cultural Foundation program runs from July 1 to Aug. 8 at the Harquail Theatre and culminates in a performance of “Ti-Jean and His Brothers,” a folk tale by Derek Walcott, who received the 1992 Nobel Prize in literature.
“It is an exciting Caribbean folk musical set in a forest where four magical creatures – Frog, Bird, Cricket and Firefly – narrate the tale of a poor old mother, whose three sons must engage in battle of wits with an old Devil and his two alter-egos: the old man, Papa Bois, and a planter. Will the Devil have his way or will one of the brothers endure?” says CNCF artistic director Henry Muttoo.
Auditions are open to mature 11-year olds who must demonstrate exceptional talent, with the program ideally suited to students age 12 and up.
“We really encourage older kids to take part, particularly if they have stage experience, because the lead roles require strong actors and singers,” says Rita Estevanovich, CNCF programs and information manager.
“This is actually the first time we’re offering a summer intensive for teens. We are grateful to Butterfield [bank], who has also sponsored our Young At Arts educational youth program for more than a year now and this is a new program that we’re bringing out,” she says.
Estevanovich and Muttoo, who will run the program and judge the auditions, are looking for actors, dancers, singers and musicians (particularly those who play flute, congas, violin and piano). Those auditioning should come prepared by memorizing a monologue (speech or poem), and either a song (with or without backing track that includes vocals), dance, or a piece of music to play on an instrument for 1-2 minutes.
Those auditioning should also be prepared to take direction and do creative work when asked by the judges, as well as wear comfortable, loose-fitting, non-revealing clothing (and refrain from chewing gum or wearing hats). Twenty-five performers will be accepted, and there will also be the opportunity for others to learn behind-the-scenes technical positions, such as lighting and sound.
Auditions will be held May 24 and May 31 from 10 a.m. to noon, with callbacks on June 7 from 2 to 4 p.m. It is essential to book an audition time in advance. The YAA Summer Intensive runs July 1 to Aug. 8, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Production dates are Aug. 8 to 10. To book an audition and learn more about the program, contact Rita Estevanovich at [email protected] or call 949-5477. You can also visit www.artscayman.org/young-at-arts for more information.