With a Song in Their Hearts, Mercer Foundation and Sundance Offer Master Class for Vocalists, With Starry Teachers

News   With a Song in Their Hearts, Mercer Foundation and Sundance Offer Master Class for Vocalists, With Starry Teachers
Vocalists seeking to improve their musical theatre and sing skills are applying for a master class sponsored by the Sundance Theatre Program and the Johnny Mercer Foundation.

The annual Power of American Popular Song weekend is designed "for professional musical theatre and film actors...to focus on the interpretation and personalization of the American songbook."

Running August 4-7, at the Sundance Village, UT, the weekend is centered around master classes conducted by award-winning performers, composers, and directors.  Panel discussions and performances round out the weekend's programming slate.

Through an open application process, 30 professional performers will be selected to participate in the weekend's events.  Master classes will be taught by Grammy Award winning singer and songwriter Melissa Manchester; Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter Jimmy Webb; Tony Award-winning Broadway composer Charles Strouse (Annie, Applause  and Bye Bye Birdie); musical director and performer Billy Stritch; legendary singer and recording artist Margaret Whiting; musical director Don Rebic, and director and producer Jack Wrangler (conceiver of the Dance Theater of Harlem's St. Louis Woman).  Additional instructors will be announced throughout the summer.

  Interested professionals should apply no later than June 14. Applicants must submit a completed application form, accompanied by a tape, CD, or video.  There is no application fee.  Tuition for the weekend is $750.  Students are responsible for making their own travel arrangements to and from Salt Lake City, and hotel reservations at either the Sundance Village or in nearby Orem, Utah.

  Applications and more information about the program are available on the Sundance Institute website at www.sundance.org.     *

The Power of American Popular Song is a creative a partnership between Sundance Institute and the Johnny Mercer Foundation.  This is the third year of the organizations' partnership.  "The Johnny Mercer Foundation furthers the rich legacy of American popular song and strives to ensure that it has a powerful future," according to the announcement. "The Foundation is equally focused on joining the past and the present, assuring an appreciation for America's unique musical heritage, just as it on honoring the risk-taking of new artists and new voices in large measure through the support of new composers writing for the American musical theatre."

Since 2002, the Johnny Mercer Foundation has provided underwriting support for one new musical play each year which was developed at the Sundance Theatre Laboratory in addition to the Master Class Weekend.

In 2002, that play was The Light in the Piazza with lyrics and music by Adam Guettel and book by Craig Lucas.

In 2003, the Mercer grant supported a new musical work by composer Ricky Ian Gordon entitled For My Family.

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