by News Bureau on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Feb. 28, 2013 – BroadwayDemo in New York City has launched a demo website for top Southeast Missouri State University theatre and dance students to use for casting.
The website is located at broadwaydemo.com/SEMO.htm.
The purpose of BroadwayDemo, according to Tina Marie Casamento, actor, vocal coach, casting director and co-founder of the company, is to empower artists to submit themselves for work in the entertainment industry. The website provides an online calling card for performers, complete with pictures, résumés and vocal demos, so artists can remain competitive.
“This creates for Southeast graduates an industry standard website out of New York that is widely used by professionals when they are casting,” said Dr. Kenn Stilson, professor of theatre and dance at Southeast. “At any given time now, our students are auditioning in New York through this demo. It’s a really incredible opportunity, and from our perspective, it is just a natural extension of our mission to help these students prepare for life after college.”
In working toward this mission, professional guest artists are regularly brought in to Southeast to help students prepare for the University’s New York City Showcase. Guest artists often include directors, designers, choreographers, casting directors and agents; this year, BroadwayDemo founders Casamento and her husband, pianist David Libby, were brought in.
“BroadwayDemo is, in my opinion, the future of casting in the world today,” Stilson said. “It serves as a centralized website that our students can use, whether they happen to be located in Cape Girardeau, as they are now, or anywhere.”
Casamento said she has noticed most artists who graduate and enter the competitive pool find it difficult to stand out when competing with graduates of big entertainment schools. So, she visits smaller schools such as Southeast to find incredible talent she might not otherwise find and then showcases it, giving these graduates an online presence so they can sell themselves as performers.
“We help shape and guide the clients who come in the door so they can have something they are really proud of,” Casamento said. “What’s really exciting is that we’ve watched people over the years, and their careers have grown.”
Some artists showcased on BroadwayDemo have ended up on Broadway or on tour across the country, and others have received job offers in the cruise industry, Casamento said. Artists can submit the website for casting, and companies often ask BroadwayDemo for referrals as well. “It’s a pretty big deal, and we’re excited about it and excited to have a relationship and partnership with this company,” Stilson said.