Broadway performers bring their skills to Shelton

Broadway stars will be teaching at the Center Stage Theatre's upcoming summer program. Above is a photo from rehearsals for a past summer program performance.

Broadway stars will be teaching at the Center Stage Theatre's upcoming summer program. Above is a photo from rehearsals for a past summer program performance.

Contributed photo

SHELTON - Three rising Broadway stars will be passing on their knowledge to aspiring young performers at Center Stage Theatre this summer.

Kayla Davion, Ciara Alyse Harris and Laura Woyasz will be leading master classes for Center Stage’s “Broadway’s Best with Industry Professionals” summer camp program, running July 19-23 for grades 7-12.

In planning the summer programming, Center Stage Board Chair John Corraro said the theater wanted to offer older students a different experience.

“A number of our seventh to 12th graders have grown up in our classes and summer camp,” Corraro said, “We wanted to provide a program that would challenge them and at the same time excite them for something different.”

This program will feature industry professionals as the students spend the week putting together a showcase. The week will feature master classes on singing, acting and dance and will culminate with a special performance at the Center Stage Theatre production of The Wedding Singer on July 24.

The new program also allowed the theater to offer a summer program for high school students who, traditionally, have not been a part of our summer offerings. When determining what the program would look like, the Education Advisory Committee and theater officials felt an intensive program, similar to what was offered at large regional theaters across the country, was what we needed.

“With such close proximity to New York City, it allowed us to tap into industry professionals to provide master classes throughout the week for our students,” Corraro said. “We have brought in industry professionals in the past for a master class here and there but this week-long intensive will elevate the education we are able to provide.”

Corraro said the program was “a significant win” for the theater.

“We continue to provide the highest level of theater education possible,” Corraro said.

Davion is currently performing in “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical” on Broadway, playing an Ikette and understudying the lead role of Tina Turner. She is a Chita Rivera Award nominee and recipient.

Her other Broadway credits include “Waitress the Musical” and “King Kong Alive On Broadway.” Her television credits include “Queen’s English” and “The Good Fight.” She is a graduate of Ball State.

Harris is an actor currently playing Alana Beck and understudying Zoe Murphy in the first national tour of “Dear Evan Hansen.” She received her degree in musical theater from the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music.

When she’s not performing, Harris works on her blog and podcast, “Queen Made of Light.” Harris is a mental health advocate and uses her own experiences to share insight about topics such as anxiety, relationships, being an artist, and learning how to love yourself where you are and where you are going.

Woyasz was most recently seen as Audrey in “Little Shop of Horrors” at ACT of CT.

Prior to that Woyasz was on Broadway in “For The Girls.” She made her Broadway debut as Glinda in “Wicked.” Off Broadway she has performed in “The Marvelous Wonderettes,” “Attack of the Elvis Impersonators,” “My Life With Albertine” and “Come Blow Your Horn.” She also has performed in national touring productions of “Cheers Live on Stage” as Diane, as the understudy for Millie in “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and as Minnie Faye in “Hello Dolly.”

For more information and camp registration, visit www.csecshelton.org/summerprograms.

brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com