[Skip to Content]

Take It From The Top

Attention Broadway dreamers, are you looking for an opportunity to hone your skills? Wharton Center Institute for Arts and Creativity is once again partnering with Take It From The Top to bring musical theater workshops to East Lansing. 

How better to strengthen the core disciplines of singing, acting and dancing than from learning from Broadway professionals? Learn from teaching artists who know what it takes to make it in the business. We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Take It From The Top (TIFTT) Co-Founder Paul Canaan.

Through small classes that allow for individual mentoring, you will advance your skills and have one of a kind experiences. 


July 22-26 / Five-Day Musical Theatre Intensive

Explore the “triple threat” disciplines of music, dance, and acting in a safe, fun environment, all while receiving feedback from Broadway professionals. Creative Kids will have age-appropriate materials to engage younger participants. No prior experience is required; we welcome interested young artists of all skill levels. The Intensive will culminate in a recital on Friday, July 26, at 7pm in Wharton Center’s Cobb Great Hall.

Teen (grades 8-college, 19-20 school year)
Pre-Teen (grades 5-7, 19-20 school year)

  • Monday–Thursday, July 22–25, from 10am – 5pm
  • Friday, July 26, 12pm – 7pm; Recital at 7pm 
  • $350 per participant, includes t-shirt
  • Students will bring their own lunches daily
  • Cap of 35 students per age group

Creative Kids (grades 2-4, 19-20 school year)

  • Monday–Thursday, July 22–25, from 10am – 3pm
  • Friday, July 26, 12pm – 7pm; Recital at 7pm 
  • $300 per participant, includes t-shirt
  • Students will bring their own lunches daily
  • Cap of 30 students
  • Please note that we do not offer post-workshop child care.

July 22-27 / Advanced Musical Theatre Workshops

Junior high and high school students who are experienced performers and wish to aim higher will join Broadway professionals as they work to stage a musical in six days. Recital will be Saturday, July 27, at 1pm in Wharton Center’s Cobb Great Hall.

Jr Advanced (grades 5-7, 19-20 school year) / performing DISNEY’S FROZEN
Advanced (grades 8-college, 19-20 school year) / performing DISNEY’S FREAKY FRIDAY

  • Monday–Friday, July 22–25, 10am – 5 pm
    Saturday, July 27, 10am – 1pm; recital at 1pm
  • $425 per participant, includes t-shirt
  • Students will bring their own lunches daily
  • Cap of 25 students per age group
  • Audition Required

July 22-27 / Tech Track

For students entering grades 8-12, this week-long program allows those interested in the technical side of theatre to learn from and work closely with industry professionals in the different fields of technical theatre, such as production design, stage management, sound and lighting design, costume design, and production/company management. The Tech Track intensive provides daily master classes as well as hands-on learning in a variety of disciplines, culminating in performing the technical tasks necessary to support the Advanced and Jr Advanced Workshop recitals. 

  • Monday–Friday, July 22–26, 10am – 5pm
  • Saturday, July 27, 10am – 1pm; Recital at 1pm
  • $425 per participant, includes t-shirt
  • May include on-campus trips to scene shop, costume shop, etc
  • Application required
  • Cap of 12 students 

July 24 / Adult Workshop

An evening of fun theatre instruction and casual cabaret. Have a blast while enhancing your skills and confidence. No prior experience required, all are welcome.

  • Wednesday, July 24, 7pm – 10pm
  • $30 per participant
  • Age 18 and up
  • Cap of 25 students

​​​​​​Master Classes

Students will work with actors from national touring casts of the shows appearing at Wharton Center during the 2019-2020 season, as well as with Paul and other special guests. Using show-specific material, work will be in singing, acting, and dancing. Ticket includes lunch, a matinee performance of the relevant show at Wharton, and an after- show talk-back with the cast.

There are three Master Class options in the 2019-2020 season, for participants age 10-19. Please stay tuned for more information, which will come to you after Wharton Center’s season announcement.


Questions? Please contact Kelly Stuible-Clark at [email protected] or (517) 884-3166.

Take It From The Top is a national arts alliance dedicated to providing quality education enrichment through music, dance and theatre to students and other organizations worldwide. Our primary goal is to serve as a catalyst for creativity for aspiring artists through professional mentoring, workshops and structured programs that will inspire confidence and provide students a pathway to attain their highest potential. 

Our generous sponsors ensure the cost of participating in Take It From The Top is as low as possible.

Take It From The Top is made possible in part by Karyn’s Dance Place, Inc. with additional support provided by Linda Arens; and Bonnie Knutson.

Photos by Harley Seeley

Institute-wordmark.jpg