How To Get Into Musical Theatre
Written by guest poster, Dio Raquel Jr
William Shakespeare once wrote, “All the world’s a stage,” however, the use of the stage is a privilege, and performers take that for granted.
As a musical theatre performer and actor, I’ve fallen into those times where I’d get the best of myself. I’d compare myself to other artists to their training and mine to having a negative mindset towards the craft. I’d almost fall into that trap of forgetting the enjoyment of the art and the main reason why I started.
As time went on, sharing the training that was given to me and feeling the adrenaline rushing seeing other performers finding what they’re looking for, I knew that I’d have to advocate for the Arts.
Currently, I’m an actor, singer, dancer in the United States, and working for the Wesleyan Theatre Company in Lincoln, Nebraska. I’m also a student director for the company and one of the lead social media interns that promote upcoming shows by creating trailers for upcoming productions and posts to increase coverage for the company. Occasionally, I’d volunteer in organizations and past educational institutions to teach Arts Leadership and Acting workshops in both musical theatre and straight acting.
The art of musical theatre and directing allows an outlet for creativity.
Challenges Growing Up
Growing up, I was fascinated with the theatrical world from using my imagination into writing scripts and seeing how individuals can pursue different emotions at once. Though, going from elementary to middle school, projecting that creative mindset with others wasn’t exactly what they’d envision as “normal.” The whole “fitting in” of being a boy who plays video games, athletics, and chasing after innocent girls were not the life I wanted to live.
Children were vicious, and teachers weren’t a fan of the mindset. When time passed, more doubtful people came into my life and would attempt to put me into their state of mind. What they didn’t realize was that it was fueling the fire more and made me work harder to pursue the love I had for theatre.
When I Was Performing, Nothing Else Mattered
Everything didn’t matter while I was performing or creating. When moving to a new environment around my early teens, theatre connected me to a world where I’d forget about leaving past friends and family members.
The creativity of singing a story, teaching students how to become more versatile with leadership and performance, or making an image become a reality forced me to show my authentic self.
All of a sudden, the cuts become scars, and the scars become a mark, a reminder. No matter how much doubt and confusion that is on the path, a stronger performer and leader are currently waiting at the end of the tunnel. The love I have for the theatre is one way to explain my enjoyment towards the art, but no word in the dictionary can explain the effects the art has done for me.
I hope sharing my story has warmed some of you up to the fact that your journey into musical theatre can start anywhere and be inspired by different situations. All that matters is that you take the first step towards it, and you reading this article is definitely a step towards that.
So...What is Musical Theatre And How Do you Get Into it?
Firstly, Musical Theatre is a theatrical art that combines the skills of acting, voice, and dance to tell a story. I found it best to tackle this topic in an FAQ framing, so feel welcome to go to the questions that interest you most!
How did you get a career in musical theatre?
There is no general list or specific progress to follow into getting a career in musical theatre. However, here is a list of experiences that I’ve done that helped to get one.
Getting started by being involved with the theatre department at educational institutions. Advertise to the general public by implementing work on social media.
Extending education by going to a University after high school studying (Currently studying a B.F.A in Musical Theatre with an emphasis in Directing)
Creating a Repertoire of a variety of pieces (Both Monologues, Songs, Headshots, Resume)
Go to many auditions as possible (Practice makes perfect)
What qualifications do you need for musical theatre?
As a performer in general, being on top of your practice is very prevalent. Attend master workshops or look in communities where there are programs that have classes or workshops in the main aspects of musical theatre. All of the training in the world can improve confidence and technique in the skills.
However, the secret to being ahead of the game in the industry starts with behavior. Provide a professional etiquette before the audition starts.
We live in an age where the media is stronger than ever, however, the media can be used against an individual when posting proactive or inappropriate content. Be aware of the content that you put out there.
With gaining professionalism, technique, and confidence, pursuing a career in musical theatre will give an individual a leg up to the authorities in the industry.
What is a good age to start training to become a musical theatre performer?
Musical theatre is for anyone who has an interest in the art form. There really isn’t the “right age” to start the art form because everyone is still learning something new every day. A theatre is mainly an art form that is freeing for an individual.
Can I become a musical theatre actor if I start as an adult?
Adults can start to do musical theatre. Everyone deserves the chance to show themselves as an artist and there shouldn’t be any restrictions. You can start with the upcoming workshops that I’ll be teaching Musical Theatre and Voice lessons here on KrisP! More information available at the end of this article :)
Do I have to live in Las Vegas or Hong Kong to take your Musical Theatre Course and/or voice lessons?
Living in a specific city doesn’t matter where you train. Training can happen anywhere both in-person and online. Every region should have access to a theatrical outlet near them. (However, during this pandemic, some companies don’t have seasons present. But online classes such as KrisP will always be available)
1. Who is your Musical Theatre Course for?
The Musical Theatre Course is designed for individuals to improve or start their musical theatre career. With the passion of being invested in the world of musical theatre, discoveries as an individual and performer would change.
2. What will I learn in your Musical Theatre Course?
The workshop will consist of character development, human discoveries with various emotions, while having the confidence to perform in their shells. This will also give students the opportunity to build up a repertoire for an upcoming audition.
Course information at the end of article, or SIGN UP HERE!
1. What are voice lessons?
Voice lessons are a mixture of a Vocal Pedagogy and singing lessons to improve projection, musical techniques, and proper vocal use in musical theatre and straight acting.
2. Can anyone sing if they get voice lessons?
Singing is an aspect that is a personal growth from the individual. However, taking this workshop would be an excellent start to grow that confidence and find the voice individuals are looking for.
3. Do voice lessons and singing lessons mean the same thing?
Voice lessons are mainly discovering how the voice is produced, knowing vocal awareness while practicing healthy ways to produce sound. Singing lessons are mainly tuning the voice to certain pieces of music. In singing lessons, that would be mainly focusing on purpose in a song and the amount of emotion that is put into the piece.
4. Who are these voice or singing lessons for?
The lessons are made for individuals who want to improve vocal technique and find their purpose through their voice.
5. What will I learn in these voices or singing lessons?
Students will learn the proper techniques and properties to not only have better control in their voices but to be aware of their physicalities while performing.
Course information at the end of article, or SIGN UP HERE!
Anyone can do anything if you put your mind and soul into it. With passion, desire, and bravery into jumping into a world of vulnerability, the stronger the individual will be. Take Action, Live Theatre.
ABOUT MUSICAL THEATRE & VOICE LESSONS
A bundle of 4-week online courses for those who are interested in musical theatre and singing. For youth aged 14-28 who want to learn more about musical theatre performance and use of their voice.
Level: Beginner to Intermediate
Instructed by Dio Raquel Jr. (Las Vegas).
1. MUSICAL THEATRE
Saturdays 11-12.30pm, HK Time (Friday 8-9.30pm, Las Vegas Time)
With the art of acting, singing, and dance, musical theatre brings a more flexible outtake in theatre performance.
Through applying common skills of character development, recognizing character shifts, while using song and movement to enhance honesty and confidence to oneself through musical performance. (If taking this workshop, highly recommended to take Voice Lessons.)
2. VOICE LESSONS
Saturdays 1-2pm, HK Time (Friday 10-11pm, Las Vegas Time)
Our voice becomes an asset in daily life and our career in the theatre industry.
Focus in the anatomy of how our voice is controlled while working with song and discovering certain registers to healthily produce a fuller sound without vocal strain. (If taking this workshop, highly recommended to take Musical Theatre Workshop.)