At the Francis J. Gaudette Theatre
303 Front Street N, Issaquah, WA 98027
Box Office: (425) 392-2202 | Admin: (425) 392-1942
Tuesday-Saturday 11:00am-7:00pm

At the Francis J. Gaudette Theatre
303 Front Street N, Issaquah, WA 98027
Box Office: (425) 392-2202 | Admin: (425) 392-1942




Institute


A Versatile School-Year Program

This versatile school-year program for grades 6-12 is open by audition for students who are ready to study, train and perform at an advanced level.

The Village Theatre Institute helps students reach their unique artistic and performance goals. Every aspect of this advanced program is taught and directed by some of the regions’ finest teaching artists, directors, choreographers, music directors, musical theatre writers and composers. Institute students will receive special attention for Mainstage and/or Village Originals performance intern opportunities.

"Institute is the highlight of my week!" Intitute Student

"I love it so much! Everyone values you and accepts you for your weird, quirky self." Intitute Student

"Great staff and teachers… very engaged and responsive… extensive experience and professionalism." Intitute Parent

"We love the connection to such an outstanding regional (and national!) theatre program." Intitute Parent

Institute/Pathway Forms

Institute/Pathway Application
Letter of Recommendation
Institute/Pathway Tuition Agreement
Institute Contract
Pathway Contract


KIDSTAGE Inclusion Statement

Village Theatre KIDSTAGE believes that everyone benefits from an inclusive, multi-cultural environment of students, staff and programming. We welcome people of every ethnicity, race, faith, sexual orientation, gender identity, income and ability.

Village Theatre Institute Program Goals
  • Annually develop rigorous and flexible curriculum to support individual student needs and learning goals
  • Facilitate student driven goal achievement, enlisting students as active agents in their own development as artists and citizens
  • Provide instruction in specific life and theatre skills targeted towards fulfilling students’ goals after High School. This includes preparation for careers in a variety of fields including professional theater and/or college acceptance
  • Provide training by expert instructors invested in the learning outcomes for each student
  • Sample Schedule

    Foundation classes will include Singing, Dance, and Acting. Students will be placed in either the Monday or Wednesday track.

    Example of Monday Foundation Classes*
    (Grades 9-12)
    Example of Wednesday Foundation Classes
    (Grades 6-9)
    4:00PM-5:20PM Dance 4:00PM-6:00PM Acting
    5:20PM-6:00PM Dinner Break 6:00PM-6:30PM Dinner Break
    6:00PM-7:20PM Singing 6:30PM-7:30PM Singing
    7:25PM-8:45PM Acting 7:30PM-8:30PM Dance

    *Actual class times vary


    Pathway:

    Example of Thursday Foundation Classes* Example of Saturday Foundation Classes
    4:00PM-5:30PM Acting 9:00AM-10:15AM Dance Essentials
    5:30PM-5:45PM Break 10:15AM-10:30AM Break
    5:45PM-7:15PM Singing 10:30AM-11:30AM Tap

    *Actual times may vary

  • Curriculum Overview

    Dance

    Students learn skills and techniques for controlling and using their bodies as actors and mastering challenging choreography. Dance classes provide tools to increase flexibility and improve core strength. Students learn essential theatre dance steps, and the fundamentals of turns and jumps. Students will explore acting through dance, specificity of movement, dancing with strength, and selling a dance number. The goal of Institute dance is to improve dance technique and performance skills, and prepare students for auditions, call backs, or any future musical theatre dance experience. Master teachers of various dance styles including ballet, hip-hop, jazz, partnering, and tap are brought in throughout the year. As students increase their dance skills, opportunities for choreography and peer-teaching increase. Additional Institute and KIDSTAGE dance and movement classes are highly encouraged.

    Sample 60 Minute Dance Class:
    10 minutes- Group Physical Warm Up
    10 minutes- Musical Theatre Dance Technique Focus
    15 minutes- Across the Floor (leaps, jumps, and turns)
    20 minutes- Learn and Execute Choreography
    5 minutes- Cool Down


    Singing

    Students will be placed in classes according to experience and demonstrated skills in music theory and sight-reading. We offer singing classes in the master class format that emphasizes theory, harmony, sight-reading, repertoire and musical theatre history. Older or more experienced students are offered opportunities for music directing experience or peer coaching. (Private voice lessons do not take the place of a master class and are highly encouraged.)

    Sample 60 Minute Singing Class:
    5 minutes- Vocal Warm Up
    10 minutes- Music Theory/ Composition
    15 minutes- Sight-Reading and Harmony
    30 minutes- Singing Practice (individual and group vocal coaching)


    Acting

    Institute students will develop acting techniques through classes that include character development, ensemble building, improvisation, audition/callback technique, and monologue and/or scene-study using contemporary plays, classical plays, and must-know theatre literature. Work in acting class will help students embrace the belief that “I am enough”. Classes will explore various acting methods and techniques throughout their years of study including: Meisner, Improvisation, Hagen, Strasberg, Stanislavski, and collective devised work. Our acting classes also incorporate voice and speech work and movement work, including Alexander, Commedia dell'arte, Lecoq, Viewpoints, and Suzuki.

    Sample 120 Minute Acting Class:
    15 minutes- Group Warm Up (Viewpoints or Suzuki Exploration)
    10 minutes- Focus Game/ Acting Improv
    15 minutes- Technique Focus- Rules of Improvisation
    30 minutes- Group Coaching and Practice
    30 minutes- Create/ Rehearse Ensemble Improvisations
    20 minutes- Perform and Share- Feedback


    Examples of Institute Electives and Workshops:

    Students participating in Institute (or Pathway to Institute) are offered Electives for no additional cost. Electives are typically offered about once a month, held on Fridays from 4:00-6:00 PM. Electives are chosen based on student interest and can also be student lead.

    Dance and Movement:

    • Partner Dancing
    • Period and Status Movement
    • Tap
    • Ballet
    • Jazz
    • Tricks, turns and gymnastics
    • Modern dance
    • Yoga for Actors
    • Stage combat (both armed and unarmed)

    Singing:

    • Creating Your Audition Book
    • Glee/Harmony Class
    • Composition
    • Musical Theatre Songs and Styles
    • Dialects and Character Voice Technique

    Acting:

    • Improvisation- Short and Long Form
    • Acting for the Camera
    • Clowning
    • Commedia dell’arte
    • Neutral Mask Work

    Specialty Electives:

    • Intro to Technical Theatre
    • Writing
    • Directing>
    • Choreography
    • Theatrical Design
    • Audition Skills
    • Stage Make-up
  • 2017-2018 Village Theatre Institute Overview

    Foundation Classes: September 2017-May 2018, meets approximately from 4:00-9:00 PM on Mondays or Wednesdays.

    Tuition: $2,200.00 Tuition covers the three Institute Monday or Wednesday Foundation classes and Institute elective courses. A monthly tuition payment plan is available. Tuition is required for the full 9 months regardless of a students’ attendance. KIDSTAGE school-year productions are encouraged but optional, and have a separate tuition. Institute students receive a discounted tuition on productions.


    Scholarships and Work Exchange: Are available for those who qualify on a limited basis. Please see the Financial Assistance Form on our Forms Page

    Evaluation: Students receive a placement evaluation following May auditions. During this time, students will receive feedback on their audition and if currently an Institute student, they will also review their progress in the program that year. The second evaluation will be scheduled as a student conference during the Winter-Spring session. In addition, there will be two written evaluations from each foundation class instructor, one for the Fall session and one for the Winter-Spring session.


    Placement: Students are placed into the program at appropriate level classes, based on their audition. Current Institute students must audition every year for placement. Due to this, the number of spots available on either Institute day for new students does vary from year to year. If there is concern that a returning Institute student may have difficulty being accepted into the program the following year, they will be given notice.

    Communication: A monthly e-newsletter offering updates for families on the coursework and any helpful information will be sent.

    Open Class and Showcase: At the end of the first semester, students will share work and progress from their Monday or Wednesday coursework via a demonstration or open class format. Later progress in the year can be seen during our year-end Showcase. There is no additional charge for Showcase. Other opportunities for families to observe an open class or mock audition may be added.


    Curriculum: The Monday or Wednesday Foundation classes will include Singing, Dance, and Acting. Additional Electives and workshops are available at no additional charge during the school year. Institute students also will receive special discounts on additional KIDSTAGE classes.

    Singing: Students will be placed in classes according to experience and demonstrated skills in music theory and sight-reading. We offer singing classes in the master class format that emphasizes theory, harmony, sight-reading, repertoire, and music theatre history. (Private voice lessons do not take the place of a master class and are highly encouraged.)


    Dance: Students learn skills and techniques for controlling and using their bodies as actors and mastering challenging choreography. Dance classes provide tools to increase flexibility and improve core strength. Students learn essential theatre dance steps, and the fundamentals of turns and jumps. Students will explore acting through dance, specificity of movement, dancing with strength, and selling a dance number. The goal of Institute dance is to improve dance technique and performance skills, and prepare students for auditions, call backs, or any future musical theatre dance experience. Additional Institute and KIDSTAGE dance and movement classes are highly encouraged.

    Acting: Institute students will develop acting techniques through classes that include character development, ensemble building, improvisation, audition/callback technique, and monologue and/or scene-study using contemporary plays, classical plays, and must-know theatre literature. Work in class will help students embrace the belief that “I am enough”. Classes will explore various acting methods and techniques throughout their years of study including Meisner, Improvisation, Hagen, Strasberg, Stanislavski, and collective devised work. Our acting classes also incorporate voice and speech work and movement work including Alexander, Commedia, Lecoq, Viewpoints, and Suzuki.


    KIDSTAGE Performance Opportunities: There are four performance opportunities during the 2016-17 school year. Most are open to all students, not just Institute.

    • Sing it Forward is a benefit for the KIDSTAGE’s annual fundraiser and is exclusive to Institute students past and present. Some special guest alumni or instructors may also perform. Auditions in September, rehearses October, and has two performances in mid-October. (No tuition)
    • TeenSelect is open to all students grade 9-Age 20, auditions in September, rehearses November–early January, and performs for three weekends in January. There is a reduced tuition for Institute students in the $500-$550 range. General Tuition is in the $600-$650 range.
    • Ensemble is open to all students grade 3-9, auditions in September, rehearses early March-mid April and performs for three weekends in April. There is a reduced tuition for Institute students in the $500-$550 range. General Tuition is in the $600-$650 range.
    • KIDSTAGE Originals for 2017-18 is open to all students grade 9 up to age 20 who have an interest in writing, lyric writing, and/or composing. Students create their own musical “for teens by teens” with professional mentorship. Applications are due and Interviews take place in late September. The program runs November through the end of March. The program culminates in three performances of a staged reading. There is a reduced tuition for Institute students in the $500-$550 range. General Tuition is in the $600-$650 range.

    Hiatus: Hiatuses and absences are strongly discouraged as they diminish the impact of the program and the student’s ability to progress. Tuition is required for the full 9 months regardless of a student’s attendance. A student must apply in writing for foreseen conflicts or a hiatus. The length of hiatus from class is at the staff and instructor’s discretion and may be extended beyond the student’s requested dates so as not to disrupt the work being done by the other students. Students may not take hiatus while rehearsing for any KIDSTAGE production program. KIDSTAGE values the Institute coursework over productions.

    Mainstage Auditions: Institute students 16 years old and older are encouraged to audition for the Village Theatre General Auditions in the spring.

  • Pathway to Institute

    The Pathway to Institute program is open by audition for grades 5-12. This 23-week school-year program is designed to give students the foundational training needed to thrive in the Institute, while creating an inclusive and focused community. In the Pathway program, students enroll for three consecutive sessions of classes from September until May. Class offerings include dance, singing, and acting. All students who audition for the Institute are also considered for the Pathway program; this program may be preferred by students newer to theatrical training or new to one or more core area of study. We take time to give individual attention and focus on each student’s growth during the year, enabling students to track towards placement in the Institute.

    Foundation classes will include Singing, Dance, and Acting. Students will be placed in either the High School or Middle School section. Approximately 24 students are accepted into the program per school year.

    Foundation Classes: September 2017 - May 2018, meets approximately from 4:00-7:30 PM on Thursdays and 9:00-11:30AM on Saturdays.

    Tuition: $2,000.00 Tuition covers the three Thursday/Saturday Foundation classes and Institute/Pathway elective courses. A monthly tuition payment plan is available. Tuition is required regardless of a students’ attendance. KIDSTAGE school-year productions are encouraged but optional, and have a separate tuition. Pathway to Institute students receive a discounted tuition on productions.


    Scholarships and Work Exchange: Are available for those who qualify on a limited basis. Please see the Financial Assistance Form on our FORMS page.

    Evaluation: Students receive a placement evaluation following May auditions. During this time, students will receive feedback on their audition. The second evaluation will be scheduled as a student conference following the Fall session.


    Placement: Current Pathway students must audition every year for placement into either program. The majority of Pathway students matriculate into the Institute program, though placement is made on an individual basis.

    Communication: A monthly e-newsletter offering updates for families on the coursework and any helpful information will be sent.

    Open Class and Showcase: At the end of each semester, students will share work and progress from their coursework via a demonstration or open class format. There is no additional charge for these demonstrations. Other opportunities for families to observe an open class or mock audition may be added.


    Curriculum: The Thursday/Saturday Foundation classes will include Singing, Dance, and Acting. Additional Electives and workshops are available at no additional charge during the school year. Pathway students also will receive special discounts on additional KIDSTAGE classes.  Pathway to Institute Foundation classes mirror the work done in the Institute with an emphasis on audition techniques, ensemble-building, and fundamentals in each skill area. For more information about the Foundation classes, see the Institute Curriculum Overview above.

  • How to Audition/Apply

    Auditions: Auditions will be held May 13-16, 2017. The audition is a general audition for acceptance into the Village Theatre Institute and Pathway to Institute as well as for the KIDSTAGE summer shows. Callbacks will be in early June.


    Audition Info: To set up an audition appointment, please email japrin@villagetheatre.org or call (425) 392-2900 x228 on or after April 17th.

    What to prepare and bring:

    • Actors need to prepare a one-minute monologue and 16-32 bars from a song. Actors also auditioning for summer productions should prepare two song selections, although they may be asked to sing only one.
    • Bring piano sheet music in a three-ring binder.
    • Bring one copy of a photo and resume for each program you are auditioning for and one copy of your monologue. School photos and photocopies are acceptable.
    • A filled out Institute Application

    Other Information: For NEW students, 1-3 letters of recommendation are due at the time of callbacks. Additional paperwork such as the Institute/Pathway Tuition agreement or contracts is not required until a placement offered for the program is made to your student.

  • FAQ

    A Message from the Institute Manager

    Hi there, prospective Institute or Pathway student! Thank you for your interest in our programs and for all of the bravery, preparation, and heart that I know goes into your audition and callback work. I respect and admire you just for showing up to audition for our programs. Remember that these are training programs. Although we look at the skills you bring to the table, we don’t expect you to have all the tools already. We just want to see you show up, do your best, and above all, HAVE FUN. More than anything, we’re looking to see good attitudes and people that seem fun to work with for eight or nine months out of the year. Yes, we have a limited number of spots we can offer to new students every year, but I want you to walk out of this audition feeling successful, no matter what happens next. Give us your best—and forget the rest!

    And, of course, thank you parents, for supporting your students’ dream and passion for the arts.

    Some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

    1. What days and times are Institute and Pathway?
      Institute takes place on Monday OR Wednesday. Both meet from approximately 4:00pm-9:00pm with a dinner break.

      Pathway takes place on Thursdays AND Saturdays. Pathway students take Singing and Acting on Thursdays and Dance Essentials and Tap on Saturdays. Pathway meets from 4:00-7:30pm on Thursdays and 9:00-11:30 on Saturdays.

    2. How many spots do you have in Institute or Pathway?
      There are ~48 total spots on Mondays, usually 9th-12th graders, and ~26 spots on Wednesdays, usually 6th-9th graders. Pathway has a total of ~24 spots per year. Current Institute students may audition return to the program in subsequent years, which mean the number of open spots for new students does vary per year. We anticipate between 40-60% of our total population per year to be new students.

    3. How long are the Institute and Pathway Programs?
      Institute is a nine month program, from September through May, with approximately 27 weeks of Foundation classes.

      Pathway is an eight month program, operating on the KIDSTAGE quarter system, and meets 9 weeks for Fall, 9 weeks for Winter, and 5-6 weeks for Spring for approximately 23-24 weeks of classes.

    4. What happens after the callback?
      You will be contacted via phone or email on or before July 1st regarding your placement. You will be contacted even if you are not offered a spot in the program, as we do offer spots on a short wait list every year.

      If you are offered a spot in either program, the Institute Manager will schedule an entrance meeting for you and your family during the summer to go over paperwork and discuss your unique goals and areas for growth.

      If you are not offered a spot in the program, we encourage you to contact us for audition feedback at kwalker@villagetheatre.org.

    5. How are students placed into the programs?
      Students are placed into the program at appropriate level classes, based on their audition. Current Institute students must audition every year for placement. Due to this, the number of spots available on either Institute day for new students does vary from year to year. If there is concern that a returning Institute student may have difficulty being accepted into the program the following year, they will be given notice.

    6. Do you offer any scholarships or financial assistance?
      Yes. Scholarships and work exchange are available on a limited basis. For more information, please consult the Financial Assistance Form located in the FORMS section of our website.

    7. Is attendance really THAT important?
      YES! Consistent attendance is one of the most important factors in a training program. If during the audition and application process, you know you have other activities (sports, choir, external shows, soccer) that will conflict with ANY of those days/times, please email kwalker@villagetheatre.org as soon as possible.

    8. Who teaches the Institute and Pathway programs?
      KIDSTAGE hires highly trained professional artists and arts educators and provides them with additional training in child development and KIDSTAGE techniques. Instructors for Institute or Pathway usually have 5 or more years of experience in their content area (acting, singing, or dance), in addition to advanced degrees in their field. Please see our INSTRUCTORS page for instructor head shots and bios.




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Issaquah KIDSTAGE

First Stage Theatre
120 Front Street North
Issaquah, WA 98027
Office: (425) 392-2900

Ruthann Tacher
Registrar and Coordinator rtacher@villagetheatre.org

Janet Cole Hamilton
Education & Outreach Manager
jchamilton@villagetheatre.org

Casey Craig
Institute Manager
ccraig@villagetheatre.org

Joel Arpin
Production Manager
jarpin@villagetheatre.org

Suzie Bixler
Associate Director of Youth Education
sbixler@villagetheatre.org

Sean Lally
Education Assistant
slally@villagetheatre.org

KIDSTAGE Mission

To provide a personal development program for young people which uses theatre arts:

  • To teach creativity and responsibility
  • To encourage teamwork and personal integrity
  • To foster self-esteem and appreciation for live theatre
Need a Form? See FORMS »

LOCATIONS

Francis J. Gaudette Theatre
303 Front Street North
Issaquah, WA 98027
Box Office: (425) 392-2202

Everett Performing Arts Center
2710 Wetmore Avenue
Everett, WA 98201
Box Office: (425) 257-8600

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