APPRENTICE PROGRAM
footlights

RCP’s Apprentice Program is a unique program that combines RCP’s high-quality theatrical productions with a focus on student education that seeks to engage local youth in community theatre and provide them with hands-on experience and training in all aspects of mounting a mainstage musical theatre production. RCP engages participants as either Performance or Technical Apprentices.

This summer, RCP’s Apprentice Program will perform at Capital One Hall in Tysons Corner, closing out the venue’s inaugural season in The Vault, the venue’s 225-seat black box theater.

RCP places the health and safety of all participants as a top priority at all times.  RCP will work closely with our COVID Protocol Manager and our COVID Compliance Officer to adhere to the most current recommendations for gathering and performing.  All participants are required to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19.

TIMELINE

PERFORMANCE APPRENTICES

Auditions: May 12 @ 7:30-9:30pm , May 14 @ 10-2pm

Rehearsals:
June 6-10, 7-9pm, RCP Rehearsal Hall (leads ONLY may be asked to come in 1-2 nights for solo work pending availability)
June 11, Kickoff Rehearsal Time TBD, RCP Rehearsal Hall
June 13-17, 7-9pm, RCP Rehearsal Hall (music rehearsals held on 2-3 weeknights pending availability)
June 20-24, 10am-3pm, RCP Rehearsal Hall
June 27-July 1, 10am-3pm, RCP Rehearsal Hall
July 5-July 8, 10am-3pm, Capital One Hall

Performances:
July 8, 9, 15, 16 – 7pm
July 10, 17 – 2pm

Strike will be held on July 17 directly following the closing performance and is mandatory for all participants.

TECHNICAL APPRENTICES

Applications Due: May 15, 2022

Production Work:
May 31-July 1: RCP Scene Shop (Tues/Thurs 7-9pm, Sat 11am-4pm)
July 5: Load into the performance space at Capital One Hall 10am-3pm
July 5-July 8: Tech rehearsals at Capital One Hall 10am-3pm

Performances:
July 8, 9, 15, 16 – 7pm
July 10, 17 – 2pm

Strike will be held on July 17 directly following the closing performance and is mandatory for all participants.

ELIGIBILITY
The Apprentice Program is open to all students in grades 7-12 (2021-22 school year) including graduating Seniors.

All participants are required to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 in order to participate.

PARTICIPATION FEE
$500/student
*Fee waivers are available for students demonstrating financial need

QUESTIONS
Contact RCP President, Kate Keifer at president@restonplayers.org

Disney’s Newsies The Musical
Music by Alan Menken
Lyrics by Jack Feldman
Book by Harvey Fierstein

Production Dates: July 8-17, 2022

Performances held at:
Capital One Hall
7750 Capital One Tower Rd
Tysons, VA 22102

Looking for more summer opportunities?  Our Program Directors are conducting additional offerings through their company: NYC’s LMproject.  Find more information below about these programs:

BROADWAY BEGINNERS
July 11-15
Ages 9-13

BROADWAY BOUND
July 18-22 & 25-29
Ages 13-18
By Audition Only
*Auditions for Broadway Bound will be occurring on the same dates as Newsies Auditions.

Meet the Staff

Alisa Claire
Co-Program Director

A Washington, D.C. native, Alisa is the Founder, Artistic Director, and Choreographer for New York City’s LMproject, a dance and musical theatre performance company currently touring the U.S. She is also the resident choreographer for The American Globe Theatre. She earned her degree from Dean College School of Dance. Alisa has set and choreographed several shows including A Chorus Line Seacoast Rep. (asst. dir/choreo), La Cage Aux Folles Mac-Haydn Theatre (choreographed), Mary Poppins Merry Go Round Theatre (asst. choreo, original Broadway choreography), Spring Awakening at American University, Big Fish in Madison, WI., The Rainbow Project in Barbados, W.I., The Mieko Fuji Contemporary Dance Company in Tokyo, Japan, and Sandy the Dandy and Charlie McGee, a musical. She has been teaching across America in multiple disciplines of dance and musical theatre, along with professional audition workshops in universities, conservatories, dance schools, workshops and camps. Her performance credits include dancing for Aszure Barton, Cherice Barton, Frank Augustyn, David Parsons, and several more including the filming of the choreography of the Disney’s Broadway musical Mary Poppins. Alisa  currently resides in NYC and through LMproject continues to create and educate in the arts throughout the country.

Brian Collier
Co-Program Director

Brian most recently served as the Assistant Choreographer for the recent Broadway Revival of Sunset Boulevard, starring Glenn Close. Brian has also served as the Dance Supervisor and Associate Choreographer for the Broadway and US National Tour companies of Mary Poppins. He was the Assistant Choreographer for the Mexico City production of Mary Poppins. He also understudied/swung 24 ensemble and principal tracks, including the role of Bert, made famous in the movie incarnation by Dick Van Dyke. He was responsible for staging multiple National TV performances, including “Dancing wth the Stars”, “The Conan O’Brian Show”, “The View”, “Regis and Kelly”, and other national parades and events. He has choreographed and assisted at multiple regional theaters across the country. Other credits include, Broadway: Beauty and the Beast (Doormat, Lefou u/s). National Tours: Cats (Dance Captain). Regional: Cats (Mistoffeles, Mungojerrie, others), Guys and Dolls (Nicely-Nicely Johnson), On the Town (Chip), Sweeney Todd (Tobias), Evita, My Favorite Year, and others.

Merissa Driscoll
Music Director

Merissa has been working with young people in the Arts for over 15 years.  Having had formative theater experience in middle and high school, she began working in the theater professionally at 16 years old. Before college she was also able to develop her skills in summer theater programs at Stagedoor Manor in Loch Sheldrake New York and The American Academy for the Dramatic Arts. While she intended to major in Theater Performance in college, her interest in music shifted towards classical studies in both voice and music composition. Her Bachelor of Music Composition from Temple University afforded her access to a variety of musical experiences.  She found herself singing with and composing original music for collegiate choirs, collaborating on dance theses, singing with rock bands and touring with a post-punk group. After college she worked in a private music school, teaching young people voice, music theory and choral studies, while also developing the schools voice curriculum.  Curriculum development led her into a more serious love of education and she turned her sights to the public school system.  Returning to school, she received her teaching certification from George Mason University and for the past seven years Merissa has been an elementary school music teacher. In those years she has contributed to the professional development of music educators, participated in further curriculum development for elementary and middle school music programs and developed the music program at her own school to one that she is proud to leave to her successor.   Since moving to Virginia in 2011, Merissa has also been actively engaged in the professional theater community.  This month she will be opening her 9th production at The Lorton Workhouse as the Music Director for Xanadu the Musical.   After this school year ends, Merissa will embark on the exciting and rewarding process of self-employment as a musician and educator. Working with Reston Community Players and LMproject is her first step in bridging the gap between schools and the wider community of the Arts. Programs like these open our young people’s eyes to the greater world of professional performance, an exciting but complex world to navigate. Merissa’s goal with this summer program is to challenge our young artists to not just hear music, but listen; to not just sing, but emote.  The artistic process is full of all kinds of wacky curves, but with practice and direction we can more successfully bring our visions to life.

Dan Widerski
Technical Director

Dan has served as the Co-Technical Director of RCP for four years and has been involved in technical theater for 30+ years, primarily focusing on set design and construction.  Recent set design and construction work includes Crazy for You (South Lakes High School), The Art of Murder (Workhouse), The Hunchback of Notre Dame (TAP), Hairspray (RCP), Peter and the Starcatcher (RCP) and The Diary of Anne Frank (PWLT).  He is the recipient of WATCH awards for his set design and set construction for Rock of Ages as well as Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida for RCP.