Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Stars of Tomorrow II—Portland Musical Theater Company—N. Portland

“Tomorrow Belongs To Me”

This is the teen Showcase of potential talents of the Future.  It was teen ladies, from 14-18, showcasing their singing abilities from mostly show tunes.  It was held at their current location in the Peninsula Odd Fellows Lodge (upstairs), 4834 N. Lombard St. and Deanna Maio, the director/teacher  www.ConfidentVoiceStudio.com of these young ladies, has promised there will be more of these Showcases for students in the future.  Stay tuned on that….  For more information on plays, go to their site, www.PortlandMusicalTheater.org

Probably best not know where the above quote comes from, as it has a sinister background, but it is appropriate for this review.  And may I have the envelope, please:  And the winners, for the future musical performers of 20XX, are:  Alexa Shaheen, Carson Verity, Chiara Rothenberg, Ella Carson, Maeve Glynn, Michaela Warren Monteblanco, Molly Hare and Riley Irving!

Seriously, all these young ladies could have been easily cast in shows with these pieces as their audition materials.  I am not a musical person myself, so can’t speak of the quality of the voices, but have seen many musicals as a reviewer; acted in some (Capt. Von Trapp, The Sound of Music, the Miller, Canterbury Tales, and Big Jule, Guys and Dolls), directed one, Oliver; and produced three, West Side Story, A Chorus Line and Sweet Charity, so I have a bit of experience with this genre.

But the real powerhouse of talent in these regards was my companion for the afternoon, Dani Baldwin, Education Director at Oregon Children’s Theatre and Producer of their Young Professionals Company, as well as a performer/director/teacher in her own right…and a super talent herself in all these areas.  Also, the head of PMTC, Deanna Maio, who directs, produces and performs, as well as having a studio and is a musical teacher/coach for students.  These are the superstars of today, who began much the same way, I’d guess, as these young ladies, and it doesn’t get any better than this as role models for them for the future!

What these young folks exhibited to me from their performances are something just as import as having great voices, as they all did, but showing confidence in what they were doing.  That aspect of performing can’t be taught, as it must come from the inside.  It must be recognized, nurtured, and nudged by a pro…then stand back and watch the talent fly.  Another aspect of performing is having stage presence, which is a twin sister of Self-Confidence.  Part of that is appearance, of course, but it is the unique beauty on the inside of that talent that must shine through.  Lastly, Talent can be an obsession, “a cruel mistress,” that cannot be sought out but, if it finds you worthy, will guide your course.  And so, be aware (and beware) of the demands of the profession, and be prepared, if you are serious about being a performer, the “normal” life will be a stranger to you, for you have taken, “the road not traveled…,” or traversed by a very few.  Seek out the Dani’s and Deanna’s in your life…and soar!

Mark your calendars for November 2nd, where Maio will be performing, Tenderly,  with her theatre, playing Rosemary Clooney.  And Baldwin will be directing, The K of D, at her Y/P Company, www.octc.org .  Neither of which should be missed, trust me!  I applaud all these young ladies, as I believe they have a secure future as performers, if they are willing to work for it.


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