At MYT we don't just build great shows, we build great kids.
While we come to rehearsal to put together a great show, our true goal is to help our students become outstanding individuals. A show stopping performance is a byproduct of the unique learning environment created by the MYT Staff. As educators, the staff teaches dance, voice, and acting, in addition to teamwork, confidence, and respect. We are proud of the community we build with each cast. 
MYT is a musical theatre program for youth and teens that stages eight productions a year. Each production offers a unique experience to help our actors and actresses grow both on stage and off.
In the spring, youth and teens work together on the same production. The staff creates an environment of teamwork that allows performers to act alongside their peers (casts are usually divided by elementary, middle, and high school) while supporting the other casts in the ensemble. This provides our younger students with the best role models and our older actors with leadership opportunities.
In the summer and fall, productions are divided by grade level, allowing the staff to work on age-appropriate skills with show material performers find enjoyable and challenging.
Mission Statement

The Meriden Youth Theatre at the YMCA is committed to involving and educating Connecticut youth, ranging in age from 5-19, through musical theater. Over the past 24 years, MYT has played an important role in the lives of many young artists, teaching participants not only how to sing, dance, act, and direct, but also how to communicate, tolerate, and to be self confident. MYT's mission to to train and educate today's youth to become confident leaders of tomorrow, is guided by the following principles:
1. Casting all who audition or wish to participate
2. Providing a positive environment which promotes teamwork, communication, and accomplishment
3. Recognizing the diversity in participants and audiences
4. Realizing it's now how big a part you get, but how big you make your part!

While MYT has our own costume shop, families will need to provide certain costume pieces for their performer. Sometimes these can be found in your closet, other times you'll need to get something at a store or online. Any costume pieces provided by MYT must be returned at the end of the show. Any pieces you provide, you keep!
A costume document will be sent out detailing what pieces MYT is providing and what you are responsible for providing.
Families are also responsible for providing the proper footwear as listed in the costume document. Footware varies based on the show and role. Sometimes it's as simple as sneakers, other times students will need black jazz shoes, and every once in a while someone needs ruby slippers!
Each child will need a plastic "costume tub" to organize their costume and belongings backstage. 

Additional Fees/Costs
In addition to providing costume and footwear (listed above), families and friends will also need to purchase tickets to each performance. 
Families have the option to donate items to our concession table and place booster ads in our digital program. Parent volunteers help run the lobby at performances.
MYT Audition Policy
It's not how big a part your get, it's how big you make your part.
During auditions students may use their scripts and sing along with the rehearsal track or accompanist. We sometimes allow students to select a part or parts in which they are interested to begin an audition. No role, however, is ever promised or guaranteed. All students must be prepared to sing and read for all parts in a show. An audition is not a read through, and students should act and sing in character and with enthusiasm. Casting is based on current auditions, not past musical theater experience or roles. The audition format will be determined by the director based on the cast and type of show. Auditions may be scheduled individually or in groups.
Every Child Gets A Part:
Participating in a MYT show develops confidence, communication skills, and a sense of community. We evaluate auditions in relation to other auditions and in the context of the entire production. We look for qualities and chemistry that are important to each child’s growth and to the growth of the cast as a whole. We strive to create a strong, cohesive cast, while focusing on each individual performer. The decisions of the directors are final, and we expect all parents and guardians to provide positive reinforcement to the children regardless of the role for which they are selected. As we always say, “It’s not how big a part you get, it’s how big you make your part!”

Where possible, we try to group siblings in the same cast and rehearsal group. In some cases, age differences or cast parings prevent us from casting siblings in the same exact cast. 

Once the cast list is posted, no changes will be made for any reason (including carpooling, friends being in the other cast/group, new conflicts that were not listed on the commitment form, etc.)
MYT Attendance Policy
The Importance of Attendance:
While most theater groups or school productions have several rehearsals throughout the week, MYT only rehearses once on Saturday mornings. As a result, each rehearsal covers a lot of important material each week. While the MYT Staff encourages students to participate in a wide range of a activities, they expect that when it comes to Saturday mornings, the show takes priority. A production is a commitment to yourself, the staff, and your fellow actors and actresses.
Handling Conflicts:
Completed commitment forms are due BEFORE auditioning. Carefully mark the dates which you cannot make rehearsal - these will be considered excused absences. Any absences that were not listed prior to auditions - regardless of reason - will be considered unexcused.

Performers with three or more excused conflicts listed on their commitment form may not be considered for major roles. 

Performers who miss four rehearsals, for whatever reason (excused or unexcused), may have their major role offered to another performer.

Performing in a musical is a commitment to the entire cast and is a team effort. The MYT staff seeks to assemble casts of committed students. Starting Summer 2024, the staff will begin considering the number of unexcused absences from previous productions in the casting process. As a result, you should list ALL possible conflicts on your conflict form to minimize unexcused absences going forward. It’s important to be upfront and honest when making your commitment to MYT productions.

The rehearsal and dress rehearsal schedule is posted months in advance and we do not add rehearsals down the stretch. Please mark these dates in your phones and calendars to avoid “double booking” yourself.
Dress Rehearsals and Performances:
Attendance at all dress rehearsals and performances is mandatory. Since performance dates and dress rehearsal dates (always the week before a show) are known before auditions, all conflicts (including sports/rehearsals) should be dealt with in advance so the performer can attend all rehearsals and shows.

MYT reserves the right to change/modify parts based on conflict commitments or excessive absences.
Join Us!
Students in grades K-12 will all ranges of musical ability and experience are welcome to join the Meriden Youth Theatre. Our students grow musically and as individuals under the direction of our talented staff and unique teamwork between children of all ages. Whether you are in 1st or 12th grade, a stage veteran or a first timer, you can find a home at MYT!
Interested in learning more? Email us!
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