It began as a family project, a way for Sierra Madre educator Gayle Blumel to offer her children to have a “meaningful and nurturing summer program.”
“It” became the GATE Summer Musical Program. The name has morphed into the Pasadena Musical Theatre Program and is now celebrating it’s 20 year anniversary.
Over two decades, thousands of Pasadena elementary, middle, and high school students have been taught “to put on a show, in the very literal sense of the word,” says Emily Clark, PMTP junior company director. “Our students not only learn to how to act, sing and dance, but are instrumental in creating the shows they put on – building sets, putting together costumes, creating props, assisting our directors, and oftentimes, developing entirely new work.”
The program has inspired original works, such as Jasper in Deadland, which has gone on and recently had its off-Broadway premier.
“PMTP is a chance to use performing arts to create professional young adults. Some will go on to fulfill big Broadway dreams; others will use their stage time to inspire great careers in other areas– but all will learn what it takes to be expressive, engaging and responsible,” says Ryan Scott Oliver, a PMTP alum and currently Senior Company director.
Two shows will be presented this summer: July 17-19, The Pirates of Penzance by the Junior Company and July 24-27, The Many Selves of Mia Scott by the Senior Company.
In between these two shows, “Two Decades of Amazing” will “not only serve as a reunion but will also showcase performances from former students who have gone on to become everything from opera singers to lawyers.”
On Sunday, July 20th, the 20th anniversary celebration’s early performance (3-6 p.m.) will emphasize the years from 1995 through 2003. This will be followed by an hour “dinner” break where attendees may choose to purchase cuisine from a variety of food trucks. The later performance, from 7 to 9 p.m. will center on 2004 to 2013.
In addition to the performances, there will be sing-alongs to the music from the shows presented over the years, and a display of playbills and archival footage. Admission will include a souvenir dog tag necklace with a special PMTP20 logo.
Pasadena Musical Theatre Program
Pirates of Penzance, Jr.: Thursday-Saturday, July 17th-19th, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m.
20th Anniv. Celebration: Sunday, July 20th, 3-9 p.m.
The Many Selves of Mia Scott: Thursday-Saturday, July 24th-27th, 3:30 & 7:30 p.m.
Pasadena Playhouse, Carrie Hamilton Theatre, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena 91105
Tickets: $20; purchase online here or at the door on day of performance
For more info, visit PasadenaMusicalTheatre.org