The Academy for New Musical Theatre has an international reputation for developing new musicals, and now is branching out to explore the artform of the CHORUS as theatre. The Academy is forming a new theatrical choral performance ensemble by the name of Perpetual Surrey, an ensemble dedicated to theatrical choral music. Auditions for Perpetual Surrey will take place on January 15th and 20th from 7-10pm at ANMT, and rehearsals will take place two Sunday afternoons a month with a debut concert currently planned for June or July 2009.
'There are some fantastic characters living inside choral literature,' says Perpetual Surrey's conductor Jake Anthony. 'In musical theatre, in opera, but also in concert stage repertoire, oratorios, chamber art songs...plus a whole new generation of works being written for theatrical chorus.'
Concert repertoire will include choral works from musical theatre, opera, and oratorio, as well as choral arrangements of other theatrical works--everything from traditional Gilbert and Sullivan choruses to ensemble moments from Leonard Bernstein, Frank Loesser, Richard Rodgers, and works from contemporary musical theatre. Perpetual Surrey will also be a forum for composers to explore brand new choral literature, written either for the stage, or for the concert hall with a theatrical impulse. Because of the chorale's relationship to the Academy for New Musical Theatre, Anthony anticipates soliciting original works and arrangements by the writers at the Academy.
'This is a unique opportunity for composers, to have a chorus to play with!' says Anthony. 'We can try out first drafts of works and see how they work, and help the composer refine final drafts.'
Anthony is looking for singers with a little bit of acting background, or at least an understanding of how to create characters and play a variety of emotions, from comic to tragic, and everything in between.
Jake Anthony holds Masters Degrees in Voice as well as Opera Conducting and Coaching from the University of North Texas. His studies in Choral Conducting include work with Alan McClung, Constatina Tsolainou, and William Thomas, as well as an internship at the Robert Shaw Choral Festival. In Los Angeles, Jake works as a private vocal coach and musical director with area theatres, and has been Music Director of ANMT's Performers' Workshop since its inception in 2005. He is currently collaborating with Jeff Marx, the co-creator of Avenue Q, on a new musical based on The Flintstones, for Warner Brothers.
"The name Perpetual Surrey came about when we tossed around words from well known songs in the musical theatre repertoire," says ANMT Executive Director Scott Guy. "We knew we'd found the right combination with Perpetual Surrey - it's classic, provocative, poetical, and is true to the idea that we're going to create new stuff but we have a legacy to the past. Though...we're still exploring Perpetual Clambake.'
Singers interested in auditioning for Perpetual Surrey's inaugural season should visit www.anmt.org for more information. Auditions will take place on January 15th and 20th from 7-10pm at ANMT, 5628 Vineland Avenue, North Hollywood, CA. 91601