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    Blog Posts (5)
    • Understudy, Swing, Standby: What Are They, and Should I Accept an Offer?

      The number one goal of a performer is to land a leading role in a play or musical. For some of those not experienced with the industry in the professional sense, an offer of understudy, swing, or standby, is met with disappointment and even slight embarrassment. It’s time for that reputation to change and for the unsung performers of the production to get the recognition and appreciation they so deserve. We’ll start with the most well-known term, Understudy. The Understudy is responsible for learning their own part in the ensemble or a smaller role, and be ready to perform either one of two of the leading roles at a moment’s notice. There are two types of Swings and it’s important to know the difference. An Off-Stage Swing is a performer who is only in the show if they are covering a role for a missing actor. An On-Stage Swing may be a part of the ensemble and may be asked to cover up to twelve roles, commonly referred to as Tracks in the show. Any casting director you ask will tell you that the most talented performers are cast as Swings since the production team needs to be able to trust that the Swing can remember blocking for multiple parts and deliver a performance like they do it eight times a week in that role. A Standby is not common for school or community theatre productions. Like an Off-Stage Swing, a Standby is not in the show unless the lead that they are covering is absent. There is no guarantee that the Standby will get a chance to perform but they must always be ready. As cast members take vacations, have family emergencies, or get injured or ill, the Standby is there to jump in where it be 1 hour before curtain or during intermission to take over the second act. Sure, it might be more attractive to say you are the lead in a production, but mastering the skills needed to become a great Understudy, Swing, or Standby, will make you an invaluable part of the cast. There are several reasons why these people are the most impressive performers in a show. Mary Claire Miskell was an off-stage swing in the musical “13” and covered five different tracks. Her experience and tips for future swings will make the difference between overwhelm and outstanding. “I had a separate script for each of the two leads and one for the three ensemble tracks. I had a highlighter with a matching pen for each and a million photocopies of a diagram of the stage to insert into my script for musical numbers and blocking. Never assume something is too easy to forget because you will. You want everything in writing but keep your script clean and simple for last-minute reviews when you go on. Sometimes you have set dates to go on for certain tracks but keep lightly reviewing the other roles as well because you might (probably will) have to go on sooner than planned.” In the role of Sven, in the Broadway musical, Frozen, three to four performances a week are played by the Standby. The role is incredibly physically demanding and requires not only an hour of pre-show stretching and warm ups, but two hours of stretching post-show as well as physical therapy and massage therapy in order for Andrew Pirozzi to stay healthy and ready for the next show. Although Pirozzi is the creator of the Broadway role and sometimes wishes he could be at every performance, he knows that it is not safe for him to push himself into more shows. Sven is a very specific track that requires not only an incredible amount of upper body strength, but also requires puppetry to move parts of the head. So, should you accept an offer to be an Understudy, Swing, or Standby? Yes! Especially if you are just starting out in the business, you want to build a reputation that you are a hard worker, dependable, and a pleasant to be around. The less a creative team has to worry about you, the happier they’ll be. The most important thing for an actor to remember, regardless of the role, is that the story is not there to serve your ego. YOU are there to serve the story. Like the saying goes, “there are no small roles, only small actors.” For further tips and tales from the Broadway Battlefield, we recommend checking out Jennie Ford’s book series, “Be The Best on Broadway.” Not only will you get real stories from Broadway productions, but you’ll see examples of how to organize blocking for different roles.

    • We Want To Brag About You!

      Nothing makes us more proud than hearing about the shows you're doing, classes you're taking, or just anything you've done that makes you proud! Send us information on your shows and we can make an instagram post or story about you! Send pictures of the show poster, or a picture of you in the show, a two sentence summary about what you're doing, and tell us who to tag on Instagram! We LOVE supporting you and are so thankful that so many of you continue to support us and help CampYATC grow! Not sure where to start? Here's an Example: "Gazpacho is playing his own concert at the Young Actors' Theatre Camp, this summer in the Santa Cruz Mountains, CA! He'll be performing several shows from July 5th-August 11th [insert specific dates and times]! Tickets are available here [direct link to tickets]. Let him know when you're coming so he can say hi after the shows!" @campyatc @theshawnryan @vdohrer

    • What is a “Type” and How Do I Find Mine?

      There is much debate and controversy surrounding the idea of types and the necessity of knowing your type is not something young actors always get to learn early on. Many drama classes reinforce the idea that theater is a magical world where anyone can play anything. Type-Casting is often met with some understandable resistance and frustration. It is thought in theatre that you can play any role, and the idea of only being able to play certain roles based on your look is contradictory. In an ideal world, anyone COULD play anything, but the professional world does not often work that way. Part of creating the world of the story, relies on things "making sense." A common criticism of NBC's hit show, "This Is Us", is that Mandy Moore is not convincing as a 60+ year old woman. Is it the makeup artist's fault? Is Mandy Moore's acting not strong enough? Possibly, but the main thing is we know and love her as her younger self and it breaks the world of the show and brings the viewers back to reality.

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    • 2021Summer Registration| YATC

      YATC Registration Form 2021 To register, please make sure a PARENT OR GUARDIAN takes the time to fill out the information below. PLEASE NOTE: There are 3 pages to this registration form. You must complete all required fields and click "Submit". ​ This MUST be filled out on a computer, it does not work on a phone! ​ We are taking a waitlist for certain sessions, but do not worry! We will DEFINITELY be able to offer spots to our campers who are on the Wait List! to Join the Waitlist or grab an availabe spot!! It is first come, first serve and we want YOU at Camp this Summer! SUMMER CAMP 2021 JUST opened NEW SPOTS! Call (925)858-3548 Student First Name Student Last Name Student Preferred Name Gender Identity Female Male Non-Binary/ Gender Non Conforming Trans FTM Trans MTF Other arrow&v Student Age At The Time Of Camp Student Birthday Preferred Pronouns She/ Her/ Hers He/Him/His They/Them/Theirs Other: Please let us know! Student Email Parent Email Parent/ Guardian #1 Name Parent/ Guardian #2 Name Mailing Address: (Number Street, City, State, Zip) Student Instagram Handle (Not Required) Year Started at YATC (YYYY) Secondary Parent Email Parent/ Guardian #1 Phone Parent/ Guardian #2 Phone Emergency Contact OTHER Than Parent Phone & Name Parent Instagram Handle (Not Required but we'll tag you in photos of your camper while they're at camp!) Student's School I agree to the Cancellation Policy View terms of use I agree to the Liability & Media Waiver View terms of use Parent/Guardian Signature Clear Upload a Photo Of Your Student (This is only for our records) Upload File Upload supported file (Max 15MB) Continue to Next Page Did you finish all 3 pages and Click SUBMIT? Thank You For Registering! Ready to pay now? Click BELOW! Prices for full sessions below include the $75 Covid testing fee. Select Your Session 2021 Summer Sessions Quick View Session 3 2021 Price $2,968.00 Quick View Session 4 2021 Price $3,569.00 Quick View Session 1 2021 Price $3,566.00 Quick View Session 2 2021 Price $3,567.00 Quick View Session Awesome 2021 Price $7,070.00 Quick View COVID Testing Fee for 2021 Price $75.00

    • Home | Camp YATC

      Summer Camp 2021- NEW Spots available as of March 3rd! Previously sold out! ​ Call (925)858-3548 for an OPEN Spot! It is first come, first serve and we want YOU at Camp this Summer! Summer News COVID Safety Dates & Rates Upcoming Events Conservatory 2021 Auditions Details Soon! ​ Summer Camp Registration Feb 18th @ 11AM PST! ​ Our Next Workshop TBA UP NEXT @ YATC UP NEXT YATC Summer camp 2021 Details Coming SOON! Register online or CALL US today! Register online or CALL US today! (855) 462-9282 BACK TO TOP

    • Summer Camps | YATC

      SUMMER CAMP SUMMER CAMP REGISTRATION OPENS FEBRUARY 18th @ 11AM ! Summer Camp 2021 registration will open soon! REGISTRATION OPENS Skip to Session Info We're Turning 20 This Year! The Young Actors’ Theatre Camp is celebrating it’s 20th Anniversary Season in the Santa Cruz Mountains this summer and we want you to be there! Obeying all CDC COVID Compliances, CampYATC will be back in person, overnight and exactly what we all need after the year we had in 2020! For more information of to schedule an interview for placement into our Award Winning Program call (925)858-3548 or Visit us Online at This Summer’s Faculty includes: Megan Hilty (Smash), Jeremy Jordan (Newsies), Laurie Metcalf (2 Time Tony Award Winner, The Conners), Kate Rockwell (Mean Girls), Eden Espinosa (Wicked), Laura Bell Bundy (Tony Nominee Legally Blonde) Julia Lester (High School Musical, The Musical: The Series), Alex Brightman (2 Time Tony Nominee Beetlejuice, School of Rock), Jim O’Heir (Parks and Rec), Christopher Henry Young (Hamilton), Brandon Hudson (Hamilton, The Prom), James Alsop (Choreographer for Beyonce and J Lo) and SO many more amazing teachers! With an All Star Faculty, a COVID Safe Camp, and the most amazing campers & staff, we are going to have the BEST SUMMER of OUR LIVES! SESSION 1 July 5-14, 2021 Tuition $3491 +$75 COVID Testing Fee SESSION 2 July 16-25, 2021 Tuition $3492 + $75 COVID Testing Fee ​ SESSION AWESOME SESSION AWESOME SESSION 4 July 27-Aug 5th, 2021 Tuition: $3494 + $75 COVID Testing Fee SESSION 3 ​ July 26th-August 1st 2021 Tuition: $2893 + $75 COVID Testing Fee July 6-25, 2021 Tuition $6995 + $75 COVID Testing Fee *sessions 3&4 run at the same time **Prices do not include the $75 Covid testing fee ​ ***Based on limited capacity numbers during The 2021 Season, we may run out of room very quickly. If this is the case, we will be adding: Session Five at Camp Mt. Cross in Ben Lomond, CA August 6 – August 15* *We will only be adding this camp session when the other 5 Camps are at Capacity. Summer 2021 Master Class Teachers Hamilton SF Cast Kate Rockwell Mean Girls Stephanie J Block Tony Winner Julia Lester High School Musical: The Musical: The Series Laura Bell Bundy Legally Blonde Nick Adams Falsettos Eden Espinosa Wicked Zachary Noah Piser Dear Evan Hansen Laurie Metcalf Tony, Emmy Winner Jim O'Heir Parks & Rec James Alsop Béyonce Choreographer Naomi Grossman American Horror Story REGISTER NOW! Call us at (855)462-9282 with ANY QUESTIONS! Back to Top

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