Today’s musical theatre shows are reaching out to a younger audience and talking to them like never before. Go to any West End or touring show and the audience will be packed with teens and children, desperate to see the show that they have been following on
social media for months.
YouTube sensation Joe Sugg is appearing in Waitress the Musical after his successful appearance on Strictly Come Dancing and one of his very young co-stars is Juliette Clement, a Minis student at Razzmataz Medway. Over at the hit show School of Rock, Ashton Murphy from the Inters class at Razzamataz Maidstone is making his West End debut after appearing in the touring show of Matilda.
As well as current Razzamataz students, former students and teachers are appearing in the hottest shows in town and bringing their West End experience back to the schools by teaching current Razzamataz students across the UK and inspiring them to achieve a career on the stage.
Six is a musical based on the story of the wives of King Henry VIII, a pop style set up that echoes the music of stars such as Ariana Grande, Rihanna and Beyonce. It feels different from many usual theatre performances with people encouraged to take photos and create Insta Stories during the encore, which has created a huge buzz on social media with its audience of adoring fans.
In fact, Six has blown up so much that stars such as Victoria Beckham and fellow Spice Girl Emma Bunton have been singing its praises. Shekinah McFarlane is a former Razzamataz Sutton Coldfield dance teacher and has visited a number of schools with her workshops. She is part of the West End and touring cast of Six as well as creating her own music under different platforms by searching for ‘Shaka’.
“Auditioning for Six was hands down one of the best processes I have ever been through,” says Shekinah. “Being a Queen is unlike any other part. Every time I hit that stage as either character (Aragon or Cleves) I discover/ I hear/ I feel something new and that is what makes it exciting.”
Being a part of Razzamataz was a great start for Shekinah as she explains: “Working at Razz taught me so much. I absolutely adore watching my students continue to grow. I always said to them to be fabulous because I saw the fabulous bouts of potential. The Principals Nick and Gemma gave me the opportunity to better myself creatively as a tutor and mentor. They helped me believe in my abilities to pass on my knowledge and energy and I will always be thankful to them, my other colleagues, the network, the students and the parents.”
One of the hottest tickets in town has to be global smash hit Hamilton. Razzamataz have two former students appearing in the show, both of who continue to be involved with the theatre school franchise through teaching and workshops.
Robson Broad is in his second season at Hamilton and was trained at Razzamataz Medway. He continues to be a part of the school as a training squad teacher. “I’m very grateful to Razzamataz for continuing to support me, even after I had graduated,” says Robson. “It’s a tough industry but during my time at the school, I got to meet lots of performers through the special guest workshops and now it is incredible that I’m in that privileged position myself.”
Working with professional performers is a big part of the Razzamataz ethos. The schools across the UK regularly offer special guest workshops so all students can experience the industry first hand, regardless of where they live. Peter Houston from Cumbria regularly returns to his roots to inspire a whole new generation of performers. Peter attended Razzamataz West Cumbria and has been in a number of shows including We Will Rock You, Matilda and now will join Robson in Hamilton.
“I loved my time at Razzamataz and attending classes in dance, drama and singing prepared me for my life as a performer by giving me lots of varied styles, from musical theatre to straight acting,” says Peter. “When you’re in the industry it’s better to have many strings to your bow. It also helped me to focus on the passion and love of performing, which inspired me to pursue it as a career.”
As the network of students and teachers continue to grow, the opportunities for current students are increasing as Denise Hutton-Gosney, MD and Founder of Razzamataz explains: ““Peter and Robson were amazing, dedicated students and it is wonderful to have them back as mentors to inspire our current students. Working with industry professionals is a big part of what we do at Razzamataz and it is especially fantastic to have past students and teachers return and show how much they have achieved. This is incredibly inspirational for our students and demonstrates what hard work and dedication can lead to.”
Thanks to the huge network of contacts, people without performing arts experience can join the franchise and open their own theatre school and access a plethora of performing arts professionals. To celebrate 20 years in business, Razzamataz are offering 50% off the franchise fee, first term management fee free PLUS we pay your VAT to celebrate. Offer ends December 2019. Have you worked for Razzamataz before? We would love to invite you as our VIP guest to attend our gala performance at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London. Please contact our Head Office for more information. Contact our friendly head office team on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01768213086. Visit: www.razzamataz.co.uk/franchise-opps/discovery-dens/
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