Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Poster Artist Has Roots in YATS

By Don Redman

Kahra Martinez comes from a family that has played a prominent role at Slidell Little Theatre for more than a decade. Her father, Fred, has served on the board of directors in various capacities, including until just recently Board President. Her mother, the late Fabian Martinez, was instrumental in getting the family involved in SLT, enrolling Kahra and sisters Kirstin and Kelsey in the Young Actors Theatre of Slidell (YATS) program and later co-directing YATS for years.

Today, Kahra is a web and mobile application designer in Hammond. She is a graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Visual Art with emphases in graphic design, digital art and painting.

In addition to co-creating SLT’s very first website with her father, for the past several years Kahra has also donated her artistic talents to designing several posters for our main stage, YATS and mini-YATS shows. Her designs for the 2015 YATS season were simply fantastic and were a wonderful gift to a program that is so near and dear to the entire Martinez family.

mini-YATS show poster

YATS - Young Juniors

YATS - Juniors

YATS - Young Seniors

YATS - Seniors

Kahra can be found online at Kahra.com.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Did You Know That You Can Buy Your Membership Online?

Memberships are the financial lifeline of the Theatre. It is through this support that the Theatre can fulfill its mission to “engage, educate, and involve members of the community in high quality theatrical productions.”

If you are not already a member, we invite you to support the Performing Arts by investing in Northshore’s premier community theatre and becoming a valued patron of the Slidell Little Theatre.


Why Should You Become a Member of Slidell Little Theatre?

Nurture New Artists:

Many successful actors, directors, writers, and choreographers have launched their careers in humble, small town playhouses. Just by attending and applauding, audiences give up-and-coming stars the positive feedback they need to continue their artistic pursuits. 

Why become a member

Share Valuable Skills:

Community theaters need more than just cast members. Anyone that can sew a costume, paint a backdrop, build a staircase, or edit a sound effect is a desirable addition to the company. Novices of a particular skill, such as construction or lighting, can increase their ability by working alongside veteran craftsmen.  Likewise, experts can enjoy sharing their knowledge and passing their craftsmanship to the next generation.
advertise_large with us
Advertise Locally:
 Small business owners should financially support playhouses, and not just for altruistic reasons. A good thirty minutes before a show, most audience members spend their time thumbing through the program, inspecting the actor bios. It’s the perfect opportunity to advertise.  Theatregoers are essentially a captive audience while they scan through the program. Small business can use this time to reach hundreds of potential customers. Ad space is relatively inexpensive and will help the performing arts thrive.

 Come out to Socialize-3
Socialize with New People:

Whether you work as an assistant director, a chorus member, the star of the show or a stagehand, one thing is certain: you will meet new friends. There is something exhilarating about putting on a show. It brings people close together; it tests their skills, and it enlightens audiences.  Many lifelong friendships and relationships have been formed while practicing sword fighting, stage-kissing, or falling through a trap door. There is a strong bond with all who band together to put on a play. We become friends because we work as one to tell as story.

Be Part of the Storytelling Process:

Plays are an ancient form of storytelling. It’s a creative ritual still very much alive despite the age of Youtube.
Most community theaters produce time-tested classics such as Man of La Mancha, Death of a Salesman, A Streetcar Named Desire, and Romeo and Juliet.  Some are light hearted; some are deep and profound. All offer a message to the audience. Classic and contemporary plays speak to us because they explore what it means to be human. Those who participate in the storytelling process can feel proud knowing they are spreading a positive message to their community.

So go audition. Offer up your skills. Advertise in the program. Contribute your time and energy. And by all means, go see a show! You’ll become a part of the vibrant, long-cherished tradition of the theatrical storytelling.

Join Now

Friday, July 17, 2015

Congratulations to the cast of Mary Poppins!

The shows begin August 28th through September 13th

     Emily Wright.... Mrs. Corry *
Emma St. Cyr.... Jane Banks *
Jacob Lacoste.... Neleus *
John Kirkpatrick.... George Banks *
Josh St. Cyr.... Bert *
Lisa Meredith.... Winifred Banks *
Lori Fasone.... Mrs. Brill *
Melanie St. Cyr.... Mary Poppins *
Michael Osborn.... Admiral Boom *
Nicholas Pucheu.... Robertson Ay *
Pam Lisotta.... Miss Andrew *
Savannah Owens.... Katie Nanna, Ensemble *
Scott Osborne.... Bank Chairman *
Zachary Osborne.... Michael Banks *
Aimee Murrah.... Ensemble
Alvin Jackson.... Ensemble
Audrie St. Cyr.... Ensemble
Diana LaSalla.... Bird Woman
Don Guillot.... Park Keeper, ensemble
Eli Moore.... Ensemble
Emily Hynes.... Ensemble
Emma Harrison.... Ensemble
Emmy Lafaver.... Ensemble
Hagan Harkins.... Ensemble
Jamie Skiles.... Ensemble
John Harkins.... Ensemble
Joseph Fasone.... Ensemble
Marcello Barbaro.... Von Hussler
Michael Chandler.... Ensemble
Olivia Barbaro.... Ensemble
Rachel Roy.... Ensemble
Samantha Harkins.... Ensemble
Sarah Toepfer.... Ensemble
Scott Osborne.... Bank Chairman
Tate Robertson.... Ensemble
Taylor Kidd.... Ensemble
Teresa Fasone.... Ensemble
Trenton Gilmore.... Ensemble
Trey Harkins.... Ensemble
*=featured role

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Top Ten Audition Tips from Scott Sauber

We asked Scott Sauber, the director of 'Mary Poppins' to provide us with his Top Ten Tips to Prepare for Auditions. Here is his advice:

1. Prepare. Prepare. Prepare.
You would never stand up and sing a concert without preparing it first. Do your solo the same favor.  You should never stand up and do a monologue without preparing it...  And there is no such thing as being too prepared.  Also with the internet as a tool - there is no excuse for not knowing something about the show you are auditioning for.  Google it!

2. Say "Thank You" to the people you are working for and working with.
They have a golden opportunity to cast you and stand next to you.  Thank them for that.  Don't apologize to them with awkward facial expressions.  We all feel the same way when we stand up there in front.  Express pride.  Die outside the audition door.

3. Leave your ego at the door.
If you think you deserve it, I am here to prove you wrong -- and I hold the cookies.  I like to reward those that can do a good job.  Not feature those that say, "Me. Me. Me."  And the role I see you playing is because I want to challenge myself and you...not because everyone knew you would get it.

4. Be flexible.
Be willing to work on a project because you trust the director, enjoy the process and want to entertain an audience.  THAT'S how you build a resume.  Accept any and every role.

5. Practice in front of mawmaw and your friends and your cell phone video camera.
Get the nerves out, check your facial expressions, make bold choices.  And please decide what you are going to do with your hands.  They tell a lot about your level of preparedness (see #1)  and they annoy auditioners when you constantly slap your thighs.

6. Dive into the character.
Don't sing how you would sing.  Sing "Mark" from RENT like you are Mark...from RENT.  I am looking emotional connection, facial expression, and a physical choice.  If the character is prim and proper - stand prim and proper.  If the character is a hunchback, by all means - I need to see your hump.  If your character longs for something, hope for it... and show it in your eyes.  

7. Choose a song early and sing it often.
Lyrics should be the least of your worries at an audition.  Make physical choices driven by the character, but don't dance around.  Make gestures, but don't spell it out for me.  Change a rhythm or speak a sentence.  Make it your own -- driven by the character. Find your favorite audition song and sing here, there, and everywhere. 

The full version is on YouTube.  You see disappointment, growth, hard work, rejection and a CRAZY GOOD monologue that will leave you in tears....all in an audition. And you will learn a lot about life and a little about theatre.

9. When nerves are shaking you up - DO A CARTWHEEL.
The physical exertion calms your nerves.  And if you are willing to do it on stage in front of the auditioners, you've got nerve and grit...and then you're willing to do anything.

10. Did I mention PREPARE.  It shows.

Friday, June 19, 2015

SLT Seeks Practically Perfect Cast for Regional Premiere of ‘Mary Poppins’
Slidell Little Theatre director Scott Sauber promises, a fun-filled, Disney adventure with heart and soul,” and is seeking a magical cast that knows too well that in every job that must be done, there is an element of fun.

Mary Poppins is an enchanting mixture of irresistible story, unforgettable songs, breathtaking dance numbers, and astonishing stagecraft. This show is a perfect opportunity to showcase a strong, iconic female performer, as well as unique special effects and illusions.

The jack-of-all trades, Bert introduces us to England in 1910 and the troubled Banks family. Young Jane and Michael have sent many a nanny packing before Mary Poppins arrives on their doorstep. Using a combination of magic and common sense, she must teach the family how to value each other again. Mary Poppins takes the children on many magical and memorable adventures, but Jane and Michael aren't the only ones she has a profound effect upon. Even grown-ups can learn a lesson or two from the nanny who advises that "Anything can happen if you let it."  

Mary Poppins Character List:

Character Breakdown

Bert The narrator of the story, is a good friend to Mary Poppins. An everyman, Bert has many occupations, including hurdy-gurdy player, sidewalk artist and chimney sweep. Bert watches over the children as well as the goings on in Cherry Tree Lane. He has charm, speaks with a Cockney accent and is a song-and-dance man.             
Male, 30 - 39 yrs old

George Banks The father to Jane and Michael Banks, is a banker to the very fiber of his being. Demanding "precision and order" in his household, he is a pipe-and-slippers man who doesn't have much to do with his children and believes that he had the perfect upbringing by his nanny, the cruel Miss Andrew. His emotional armor, however, conceals a sensitive soul. A baritone, George may speak-sing as necessary.            
Male, 40 - 45 yrs old

Winnifred Banks George's wife and Jane and Michael's mother. A former actress, she is loving and distracted homemaker who is busy trying to live up to her husband's desire to obnly associate with "the best people" as well as be the model wife and mother. She suffers from the conflicting feelings that she's not up to the job of "being Mrs. Banks," yet, she is, and more. She has great warmth and simplicity to her tone.    
Female, 30 - 40 yrs old

Jane The high-spirited daughter of Mr. and Mr. Banks, is bright and precocious but can be willful and inclined to snobbishness.              
Female, 11 yrs old

Michael The cute and cheeky son of Mr. and Mrs. Banks. Excitable and naughty, he adores his father and tries to be like him. Both he and Jane misbehave in order to get the attention of their parents. 
Male, 9 yrs old

Katie Nanna Jane and Micahel's nanny at the beginning of the show. Overwhelmed and upset, she has absolutely had her fill of the Banks children.          
Female, 30 - 40 yrs old
Speaking Role

Policeman A neighborhood fixture who is respected by and observant of households on his beat.    
Male, 30 - 50 yrs old
Speaking Role

Miss Lark The haughty next-door neighbor of the Banks family who treats her dog, Willoughby, as if her were child.         
Female, 30 - 40 yrs old
Speaking Role

Admiral Boom A retired Royal Navy man and neighbor of the Banks family. A physically large man with a loud and booming voice, he speaks in Navy jargon and has a soft spot for his neighbor, Miss Lark. Can be any vocal range as needed. If Admiral Bloom doubles as the Banks Chairman, he can be a baritone.              
Male, 50 - 60 yrs old
Speaking Role

Mrs. Brill The housekeeper and cook for the Banks family. Overworked and harrassed, she's always complaining that the house is understaffed. Her intimidating exterior is a cover for the warmth underneath. Mrs. Brill doesn't have a high opinion of nannies in general and Mary Poppins in particular. She does not have to be a strong singer.  
Female, 50 - 60 yrs old

Robertson Ay The houseboy to the Banks family. Lazy, sleepy and grumbling, he never gets things right and believes himself to be useless. He doesn't do a lot of singing, but his "Spoonful" solo can be a fun surprise.              
Male, 20 - 30 yrs old

Mary Poppins Jane and Michael Banks's new nanny. She is extraordinary and strange, neat and tidy, delightfully vain yet particular, and sometimes a little frightening but always exciting. She is practically perfect in every way and always means what she says. A mezzo soprano with strong top notes, she should be able to move well. She can have a more traditional soprano sound, but precision and diction is the key.           
Female, 20 - 30 yrs old

Park Keeper Uniformed and officious, he makes sure no one breaks park regulations. His life is defined by rules, but he secretly hankers after his childhood.          
Male, 40 - 60 yrs old
Speaking Role

Neleus The statue of a young boy posed with a dolphin in the park. Neleus was separated from his father, Poseidon, and misses him very much. A small and lonely being, he is very happy to befriend Jane and Michael. This role is a wonderful opportunity to feature one of the strong dancers in your ensemble.          
Male, 16 - 20 yrs old

Queen Victoria A statue in the park.         
Female, 40 - 60 yrs old

Bank Chairman The head of the bank where Mr. Banks is employed, is an Edwardian stuffed-shirt. He can speak/sing his lines if necessary.        
Male, 50-60 yrs old

Miss Smythe The Bank Chairman's humorless secretary.   
Female, 40 - 50 yrs old
Speaking Role

Ensemble Annie, Fannie, Valentine, Teddy Bear, Mr. Punch, Doll, Chimney Sweeps, Toys, Parkgoers. 
Von Hussler A businessman seeking a loan from the bank for a shady business deal. He speaks with a German accent.
Male, 30 - 50 yrs old
Speaking Role

John Northbrook An honest business man seeking a loan to build a factory for his community. He speaks with an accent from Northern England.     
Male, 30 - 50 yrs old

Bird Woman Covered in a patchwork of old shawls, and her pockets are stuffed with bags of crumbs for the birds. She tries to sell her crumbs for the birds. She tries to sell her crumbs to passersby, who ignore her as if she doesn't exist. Sings "Feed the Birds." There can be a gruff, folksy quality to her voice that relfelcts the hardness of her life.           
Female, 50 - 60 yrs old

Mrs. Corry Owns a magical gingerbread shop. She is a mysterious woman of great age who speaks with a Caribbean accent (or any accent that would make her seem exotic).        
Female, 40 - 50 yrs old
Speaking Role

Miss Andrew George's overbearing and scary nanny. With her bottle of nasty-tasting brimstone and treacle to kepp naighty children in line, she is a biully who only knows one way of oing things - her way. A soprano with an alto belt, there can be some heaviness to her voice along with range.     
Female, 40 - 60 yrs old

See more at: http://www.mtishows.com/show_detail.asp?showid=000329#sthash.DCDtLKlM.dpuf 

Monday, June 15, 2015

Fabian Martinez Memorial Fund To Help Kids Find Their Wings

Fabian Gras Martinez
It has been said that theatre gives you wings and perhaps no one understood that better than Fabian Gras Martinez, who had seen firsthand the power live theatre had on her own three daughters and who later dedicated so much of her time and energy and talents to bringing theatre to countless other children.

It is only fitting that a new memorial fund has been established in Fabian’s name that will provide an opportunity to underprivileged children to also receive their wings through participation in Slidell Little Theatre’s renowned youth program -- the Young Actors Theater of Slidell, or YATS. 

“She always felt that theatre is the perfect place for a child to learn about life in the world,” said her husband, Fred Martinez. “Honesty, responsibility, commitment, respect, courage, preparedness, trust, humility and delay of gratification are all things that are developed in theatre. She also felt that the children are the future of the organization.”

It was in the late ’90s when the Martinez girls were first bitten by the theater bug after participating in the Angels Academy, at that time under the direction Rita Stockstill-O’Sullivan. Determined to continue feeding the girls’ newfound artistic expression, Fabian brought the family to Slidell Little Theatre, including her recalcitrant husband, and plowed headfirst into various stage productions and, of course, the YATS program.

Fabian quickly became an integral member of the YATS administrative structure and along with Dayle McDonough, the YATS program grew in size and reputation as a premier kids’ theatre. It wasn’t long before Fabian concluded that the program needed to expand to include even younger children, kids as young as four, and thus the mini-YATS program was born.

Fabian passed away unexpectedly on October 3, 2014. The Memorial Fund was started shortly thereafter as a tribute to Fabian and as testimony of her love for and generosity to our young people.

“Fabian was driven by her love for children,” said Fred Martinez. “Our home was a haven for countless children who needed somewhere to go, whether it was an hour a day a week or longer. She was a nurturer who mastered the ability to offer wisdom, love and support to the children of family members, friends, neighbors, acquaintances and strangers.”

The Fabian Gras Martinez Memorial Scholarship Fund is currently accepting donations to help cover YATS tuition costs for economically disadvantaged children. All levels of contribution are appreciated. The Fund and applications will be administered through the YATS program and overseen by the Slidell Little Theatre Board of Directors.

Click here to be directed to an online donation page for the Fabian Gras Martinez Memorial Scholarship Fund.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

2014-2015 Ginny Award Winners Announced

SLT Names ‘The Full Monty’ Season’s Best Show
Ginny Awards recognize on stage/ off stage talents

The Slidell Little Theatre production of Terrence McNally and David Yazbek's story full of heart took Best Show honors at the community theatre’s recent Ginny Awards ceremony.

Cast of The Full Monty
Named after SLT founder Virginia Madison, the Ginny Awards recognize achievement during the community theatre’s six main stage productions, including categories for acting, directing, choreography, set design, lighting, sound and more.

Joshua St. Cyr

The winners of the 2015 Ginny Awards are:
Best Poster – Glenn Dietrich for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
Best Lighting Design – Scott Sauber for “The Full Monty”
Best Sound Design – Josh St. Cyr  for “The Full Monty”

Best Costumes – Myra Duffour for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
Best Set – Christine Barnhill-Tramel for “A Good Old Fashioned Rednecked Country Christmas”
Best Choreography Katie Peck for “The Full Monty”
Best Supporting Actress in a Musical Diana La Salla for “The Full Monty”
Best Supporting Actress in a Play – Maria Hefte for “Doubt, a Parable”
Best Supporting Actor in a Play Robert Jahncke for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
Best Supporting Actor in a Musical – Gary Gilmore for “A Good Old Fashioned Redneck Country Christmas”
Best Leading Actress in a Musical – Sara Pagones for “Fiddler on the Roof”

David Jacobs and Sara Pagones

Best Leading Actress in a Play – Anne Pourciao for “Doubt, a Parable”
Best Leading Actor in a Musical – David Jacobs for “Fiddler on the Roof”
Best Leading Actor in a Play – Derrick Stevens for “Move Over, Mrs. Markham”
Best Musical Director – John Giraud for “The Full Monty”
Best DirectorScott Sauber for “The Full Monty
Scott Sauber

The Ginny Awards were first introduced during the 1968-1969 Season. That year, “Of Mice and Men” was named Best Show.