Memphis students win national theater award in Atlanta
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Students that attend New Spark Performing Arts in Memphis won a Freddie G Excellence in Dance Award and earned other recognition at the 2023 Junior Theater Festival (JTF) in Atlanta, according to a press release.
This festival took place on Jan. 13 through Jan. 15 at the Cobb Convention Center in Atlanta, Georgia and was designed to highlight and honor outstanding student-driven musical theater programs.
Student Camden Barber made it to the callback for a yet-to-be-announced special video project which will promote musicals in schools, according to the press release.
Students Mariah Balfour and Camden Barber were named Junior Theater Festival All-Stars.
At the festival, each student performed 15 minutes of Broadway Junior musical adjudicators, according to the press release.
New Spark Performing Arts presented “Once on This Island JR” an edition of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty’s story of “two worlds never meant to meet.”
“New Spark Performing Arts’ presentation was powerful, strong, moving, and inspiring. The ensemble trusted one another and took the work to another level,” said Peter Avery, Director of Theatre for the New York City Department of Education.
Called the “rousing celebration of theatre” by the New York Times, JTF Atlanta encourages and gives students and educators the tools they need to produce student-driven musical theater all over the world.
“There was so much conviction from this group that I wanted to get up there and perform Once on This Island JR. with them. Their presentation really let me know how much time and energy these young people put into creating art,” said Brion Watson, actor on Hamilton national tour and Wicked national tour.
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