Professional Guest Artist Master Class Series 2019

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Playhouse Theatre Academy offers programs, workshops and Master classes in special topics that allow teens and adults to connect with professional artists and expand their skill set. Past topics have included Improvisation, Broadway Dance: FOSSE, the Art of Clowning, and Contemporary Musical Theatre Auditioning.

General Info:
Classes are $30 each or $100 for all four!     Observation fee $10

Classes are held at: The 224 Ecospace, 224 Farmington Ave., Hartford

June 17: Broadway Dance: Fosse! with Stephanie Pope

(Stephanie was featured in Playhouse on Park's "In The Heights")

Monday, June 17, 6:30 - 8:30pm
Age 16 and older

Class Agenda
- *Dancers should be warmed up and rady to dance before the class begins*
- 30 min: Fosse technique (style)
- 75 min: Learn "Bye Bye Blackbird" choreography from the Broadway show FOSSE (dancers who attended Stephanie's previous Master Class will have the opportunity to refine their moves and learn a new section of choreography.
- 15 min: Q and A

Registration Form

July 15: Triple Threats! with Susan Haefner

(Susan will star in Playhouse On Park's "Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Story")

Monday, July 15, 6:30 - 8:30pm
Age 16 and older

Get a taste of what it is really like to be in a Broadway Musical in this 2 hour master class. Broadway veteran Susan Haefner will teach songs and dances inspired by Broadway shows, giving everyone a chance to sing, dance and act ...all at the same time! Throughout the class, students will learn how to learn choreography, tell a story through song and dance, and add the pop, precision and personality that makes a performance extra special, and a lot more fun!
Other Info: Sneakers or dance shoes, comfortable clothes to move in. Beginner Level

Registration Form

July 22: The Memphis/Sister Act Experience with Ivory McKay

(Ivory is featured in Playhouse On Park's "The Scottsboro Boys")

Monday, July 22, 6:30 - 8:30pm
Age 16 and older

Join Ivory McKay, playing Mr. Bones in The Scottsboro Boys for a Master Class in performing choreography from “Underground” from Memphis and “Spread Love” from Sister Act. Ivory will focus on performance, musicality and bringing versatility to students' work. The importance of diverse styles and time periods promote confidence, spontaneity and critical thinking, and allows students to develop their own expression and identity! Good for all levels, we will create a positive, joyful, hardworking and sweat full dance space! 

Other Info: Please wear sneakers, if you'd like to come early to warm up the studio will be open half an hour prior. 

Registration Form

July 29: The Characters in Me! with Juwan Crawley

(Juwan is currently the Genie in Broadway's "Alladin")

Come and talk and sing and learn about what you uniquely have to offer and how to bring that into the audition room! 

Monday, July 29, 6:30 - 8:30pm
Age 16 and older

NOTE LOCATION CHANGE: The Master Class will be held at Playhouse On Park

What makes you special? In a world where everyone is talented, what can you offer that brings you to the forefront? These are the questions Singer, actor, and writer Juwan Crawley have learned to capitalize on in his career, At 24 having done Broadway, Off-Broadway and Pre-Broadway, Juwan has always charged his quick rise in the theater world to being different, and how to merge that difference with Character! Come and talk and sing and learn about what you uniquely have to offer and how to bring that into the audition room! 


Other Info: Bring Sheet Music to work with of a song you feel comfortable singing.

Registration Form

About the Artists:


Stephanie Pope, is a dancer, singer and actress and a musical theater veteran having appeared in over 10 Broadway shows with a career spanning over 35 years. Broadway and touring credits include the revival of Pippin , for which she received an Astaire Award nomination, an ACCA Award and the beloved Gypsy Robe, Chicago (Velma Kelly), Thoroughly Modern Millie (Muzzy Van Hossmere), Fosse (Leading Player), Smokey Joe's Cafe (Brenda), A Funny Thing… Forum (Gymnasia), Kiss of The Spider Woman (Stand-by for Ms. Chita Rivera) , Jelly's Last Jam (The Hunnies) and The Will Rogers Follies...just to name a few.                        
Stephanie has the distinct honor of having been hand-picked to work with the legendary director/choreographer, Bob Fosse, along with his former wife and muse, Gwen Verdon on her first two Broadway shows, the revival of Sweet Charity starring Debbie Allen and Bebe Neuwirth and Bob Fosse'e Big Deal. She holds the distinct and treasured title of being a "Fosse Dancer".

In addition to her work with Mr. Fosse and Ms. Verdon, Stephanie has shared the stage with such luminaries as Chita Rivera, Ben Vereen, MariLu Henner, Gregory Hines, Brian "Stokes" Mitchell and Nathan Lane. She has worked with directors and choreographers such as Tommy Tune, Christopher Chadman, Chet Walker, Anne Reinking, Rob Marshall, Kathleen Marshall, Peter Gennaro, Michael Kidd, Michael Peters, Jerry Zaks, George C. Wolfe, Hal Prince, Alex Sanchez, Diane Paulus and Regina Taylor.

Stephanie was trained at The Dance Theatre of Harlem School and received a scholarship to study at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center and the Broadway Dance Center under Frank Hatchett as well as many dance studios in the NY area. 

In addition to her work on the stage, screen and television, Ms. Pope is a certified Hot Yoga instructor. In 2008, in an effort to give back to her Harlem community she opened Bikram Yoga East Harlem, which she operated for eight years and was named one of the top 10 hot yoga studios in the country. She continues to teach hot yoga whenever her schedule permits incorporating her understanding of the human body learned through her years of dancing.     


Susan Haefner is very excited to return to Playhouse on Park to teach summer workshops, having taught several in past years. She is grateful to be part of the Playhouse on Park family as an actor and director. As can actor, she has appeared in The Dining Room at the Playhouse, and will play Rosemary in Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical in January 2020. As a director, Susan directed/choreographed 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Little Shop of Horrors. and directed Steel Magnolias. Susan is a Broadway veteran, having appeared in State Fair, 42nd Street, and Thoroughly Modern Millie. Her national tour credits include Damn Yankees w/ Jerry Lewis and Billy Elliot. As a teacher, Susan has taught at numerous Performing Arts Schools and Theatres such as Northern Stage, Shuffles Tap School, Weston Playhouse, and Geva Theatre Center’s Summer Academy. For more information about Susan, please visit her website:


Ivory McKay is originally from Michigan! Has lived in New York City for fourteen years and has been blessed to be a part of the Musical Theater World. Graduate of the University of Michigan with a B.A in Psychology, Ivory moved to Chicago for a couple of years and began his Musical Theater training. Joel Hall Studio, Homer Bryant and Lou Conte Studios were the places of Ivory's Ballet, Jazz and Tap training. Moved to NYC and has loved it! Favorite performances include Buzz Who in Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (Madison Square Garden), Hello, Dolly! (Ensemble, National Tour Starring...Sally Struthers), Judah in Joseph and the Amazing...(National Tour ), and Radio City Christmas Spectacular Tours for six years and many Regional Theatres around the country!


Juwan, who now resides in Brooklyn New York, has had an amazing adventure since college. After graduating from the University of Hartford in 2016, and missing his last day of college to audition for an Off-Broadway Musical, he moved to New York to start his life as an Artist. He booked that Off-Broadway Musical, now known as the hit Spamilton, where he recorded his first Original Cast Album, and was nominated for the Clive Barnes Award for Theater Artist. Juwan left Spamilton to do a pre-Broadway run of a show called Found in Philadelphia where he starred as Mikey D. After this he returned to New York to audition for Mean Girls, a new musical, which he did not get, however the Director of Mean Girls, Casey Nicholaw, who also directed Aladdin, Book of Mormon, and several other Broadway hits, created a new position in the Broadway Company of Aladdin for Juwan to standby for the Genie. It was here that Juwan made his Broadway debut at 22, in the role of the Genie, making him the youngest person in history to play the role on Broadway. Tina Fey, and Jeff Richmond the creators of Mean Girls, also wanted to feature Juwan in a separate project, which is how he made his Netflix Debut in The Emmy Nominated, 4th season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt as a Co-Star in episode 5. Aside from acting, Juwan has also been pursuing his music. He just finished creating and recording his EP, Becoming, produced by Grammy Award Winner Dominic Fallacaro. Juwan and Dominic co-wrote the EP, which is planned to be released in the Spring of 2019. Juwan is also currently writing the script and score for several other projects to be announced within the coming year.

Registration Form