Our popular Musical Theatre Youth Company, split into Intermediate (ages 11-13) and Seniors (ages 14-18), meets every Saturday.
Led by industry professionals and inspired by both popular classics and contemporary musicals, the groups are inclusive and open to all abilities, developing skills in singing, dancing and acting and working towards public performances.
Based at one of the busiest theatres in the UK, participants get a sneak peek in to the workings of a real theatre with opportunities to go on backstage tours, work with our Associate Artists and visiting companies, and get discounted tickets to see what’s on.
Recent work in the autumn term included developing pieces from well-known musicals including La La Land, Dear Evan Hansen, Amélie and West Side Story which culminated in a mini musical called ‘Lost and Found’ in the foyers ahead of a Saturday matinée performance of The Nutcracker. The companies also worked with our Associate Company, Sonia Sabri Dance Company, on developing a new piece.
In the summer term, our companies are rehearsing and performing a spectacular showcase in our Patrick Studio celebrating the Hippodrome’s 120th anniversary, bringing the theatre’s dynamic and diverse history to life through acting, dance and song. The production includes pieces from The Lion King, Billy Elliot, Twelfth Night, Hairspray and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
Daniel Tyler-McTighe (Director) has created work with, by and for young people and community groups at the national theatres of Spain and Korea, Warsaw Palace of Culture and many UK settings. His many youth theatre directing credits include the world premiere of Girls Like That by Evan Placey, 1984 and The Ramayana.
His professional theatre-making has included Rent, Little Shop of Horrors, Shakespeare adaptations at Shanghai International Experimental Theatre Festival, Almagro Festival in Spain, Bristol Shakespeare Festival and Madrid Fringe Festival, the Arts Council England-funded tour of a new play about his Anglo-Indian family’s history Between the Two, Joseph K, Misery, The Maids, Hedda Gabler and Fantastic Mr Fox.
Daniel is Director of the University of Oxford’s national Multilingual Performance Project, delivers theatre programmes for Millikin University and Birmingham City University, leads workshops with older people with dementia, and has worked for over seven years with the Birmingham Repertory Theatre in various roles.
Rebecca Schwarz (Musical Director) trained at QMW, CSSD and BSA and worked as an actress in her early 20s performing at theatres such as Jermyn Street Theatre and the Shaw Theatre. Throughout this time, she was honing her singing craft through singing lessons with Mark Meylan and sharing her original songs at open mic nights in Birmingham and London.
Rebecca has taught singing since 2004 and ran choirs since 2005. She has established five choirs and is now Musical Director of Cantare Choir Birmingham. She has arranged over 40 songs for these choirs to sing. Rebecca has constantly sought out varied training, including certifying in Estill Training, (CFP) and training with the British Voice Association (BVA). Rebecca is a Licentiate of the London College of Music in Music Theatre and has achieved their teaching diploma at Associate level.
Rebecca has performed many solo cabaret shows, and has also toured them locally. She currently organises and MCs the scratch/open mic night “Cabaret Needs You Birmingham” and is putting together a tour of her original musical Baby Brained.
Rebecca now teaches individuals, groups and choirs as well as hosting masterclasses including those from visiting international tutors. Her students can be found at many performing arts colleges, such as Laines Theatre Arts, ICMP and BIMM and in West End shows such as Matilda The Musical, An American in Paris and Cats on tour. She has been called on by Universal Records and the BBC.
Stefanie Freeman (Choreographer) is a dance artist, choreographer and educator. Originally trained in Performing Arts, she has continued to develop a wide range of skills in various dance styles including Hip Hop, Jazz, Contemporary, and Commercial dance.
She began her career working with Impact Dance, a Hip Hop Theatre company based in London, performing at events and venues such as Sadler’s Wells, the Peacock Theatre, The Place and Move it, whilst also choreographing and performing in touring work nationally and internationally at Brighton Fringe Festival, Greenbelt Festival and the Harare International Festival of Arts.
Her work with Impact Dance enabled her to work as a returning freelance artist, teaching Street Dance at the Royal Ballet’s summer school as well as working on a holiday intensive project with the CAT students at Dance East in Ipswich. Stefanie went on to accept the role as Director of the Impact Dance Youth Academy between 2010 and 2012, nurturing the talent of young people and providing opportunities for the groups to perform at platforms such as U.Dance and Big Dance in London.
Stefanie went on to work as an independent dance artist for Step into Dance, the largest on-going secondary school dance programme in the UK, which enabled her to work closely with many schools to develop their dance provision and offer performance opportunities within their school, local community and at professional performing venues across London.
Most recently Stefanie completed a Diploma in Dance Teaching and Learning at Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, which enabled her to hone her skills as a dance practitioner.