I just want to let you know how much MTA has influenced who I am as a person and a performer. I honestly don’t know if I would even be going into theatre if I had grown up anywhere else. You always created an environment that made me feel excited to be there and safe to take risks. I’ll have you know that that environment really doesn’t exist anywhere else in the theatre world like it does under your direction at MTA, but you gave me the confidence and the professionalism to handle the outside world. Laura Harris, MTA Alumni
Melinda Koen and the Staff at MTA,
Thank you so much for the amazing opportunity that you gifted to my daughter Mia McClellan! She truly had the best 2 weeks of summer with MTA and she is beyond grateful for that experience. She has been singing non stop since the show wrapped. Her love for the theatre was definitely nourished with this camp.
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Jennifer McClellan
Today, I had my last in-studio rehearsal at the place I have called home for the past five years of my life. When I was ten years old, I was struggling to find my place, I tried various sports and activities, but none lasted because I never felt that I fit in. Then, I walked in to my first audition at The Musical Theatre Academy of Orange County. After that mere 4 hour audition, I got in my mom’s car and told her, “Mom, I found my people.” That statement remains true to this day. Just to show you, my first interaction at MTA was with this very tall girl, right as I walked in, this girl opened her arms wide and said, “Hi! My name is Ali. Welcome to MTA!” and proceeded to give me a bear hug. That girl is now one of my best friends. And ultimately, that is what it is all about. I don’t do theatre because I thrive off of the applause, nor do I do theatre because I live for the spotlight. I do theatre for the inseparable bonds one gets when they unify to make something truly beautiful. And yet, MTA shows aren’t beautiful because of our perfectly tuned harmonies or our insane, but impeccable dance breaks, but they are beautiful because those bonds we have created show in each of our performances. I truly don’t have enough words of love for the people I have made that connection with, but I will try my best. Thank you for always supporting me when times are rough. At a school where I could cry in the bathrooms all of lunch and no one would notice or no one cared to help, I was never used to walking in to a room a little sad and having multiple people come up to me asking what is wrong and how they could help, and I could not count the amount of times I have gotten that type of support from my cast mates. Thank you for making my happy days that much better. Thank you for getting excited over the little things with me, like finally getting choreo that I have struggled with. Thank you for accepting me for the weird, loud person that only comes out of me at rehearsal. Just thank you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how much sleep rehearsals have prevented me from getting or how many hang outs I have missed because of the excuse, “sorry I have rehearsal.” It doesn’t matter because I would always rather be at rehearsal, working hard with the people I love the most. Because, when the memories fade, when I forget the dance auditions that are currently so ingrained in my head, or when I forget why the password on my phone has been “corney” for all but two years of having a cell phone, I have no doubt in my mind that I will always remember the feeling of love and support that emanates from my home. I love and will miss my family.
Brianna Fortmuller, MTA Student