Andrew Drost – Voice
Mr. Drost’s brainchild, and teaching methodology called VoiceBarre®, has been called “genius” and “life-changing” by his students and professional clients. As an in-demand teacher, Mr. Drost has given talks on vocal health and taught vocal masterclasses throughout the US as well as internationally.After nearly 30 years of stage experience as a singer, dancer and actor combined with his work with Alexander technique, Feldenkrais, as well as working with some of the best voice teachers, coaches, breathing specialists and otolaryngologists from around the World, Mr. Drost cultivated and created VoiceBarre®, a systematic approach to vocal technique that gives students the tools required for the demands of a Broadway performance schedule.
Born in Detroit, MI he began his artistic career as a professional ballet dancer working with many of the top ballet companies in the United States such as the Boston Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Chautauqua Ballet, Los Angeles Ballet and the Metropolitan Opera Ballet.
Working with choreographers such as Twyla Tharp, Paul Taylor, David Parsons, Jimmy Gamonet de los Heros, John Clifford, Fernando Bujones and Bill T. Jones to name a few. Performing many full length ballets such as Swan Lake, Giselle, Romeo and Juliet, The Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and his fair share of The Nutcracker which he danced over 500 performances of during his career.As an International operatic tenor, Mr. Drost has performed in more than 30 productions world wide. He made his operatic debut with the Sarasota Opera in the role of “Flaminio” in L’amore di Tre Re (Montimezzi) and “Macduff” in Macbeth (Verdi) followed by his debut with the New York City Opera in the role of “Signor Pirelli” in Sweeney Todd (Sondheim). After his successful debut with the NYCO he was invited to sing the role of “Belfiore” in Il Viaggio a Reims” (Rossini), “Rodrigo” in La Donna del Lago (Rossini), “Victorin” in Die Tote Stadt (Korngold), “Acis” in Acis & Galatea (Handel), “Bagha” in the World Premiere of Haroun and the Sea of Stories, “The Lamplighter/Drunkard” in the NYC Premiere of The Little Prince, “Ciccio” in The Most Happy Fella and many more; as well as many concert and gala appearances including “City Opera at the Pier” at the South Street Seaport in NYC, “Stars of The New York City Opera” at the West Hampton Performing Arts Center, “French Fete” opening night gala and VOX, a special program dedicated to showcasing modern operas.He made his European debut at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, Italy singing “Belfiore” and “Liebenskof” in Il Viaggio a Reims. With the Sarasota Opera he has also performed “Prunier” in La Rondine (Puccini).
He was invited by the Caramoor International Music Festival to participate in the “Bernstein on Broadway” celebration concert with the Orchestra of St. Lukes and Broadway leading ladies Judy Kaye and Lisa Vroman with Michael Barrett conducting. With the Opera Theatre of St. Louis, he performed in the World Premiere of “The Golden Ticket” (Ash) where he sang the role of “Augustus Gloop” to great critical acclaim. About Mr. Drost’s performance OperaNews Magazine said “…Augustus Gloop mimics a Wagnerian Tenor and Andrew Drost’s firm, bright top was thrilling!”. The beginning of 2011 he sang the role of SYME in “1984” (Maazel) at the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia under the baton of Maestro Lorin Maazel to critical acclaim and the title role in Mozart’s “Mitridate” in New York City. Spring 2012 brought Andrew to the Atlanta Opera to reprise his role of “Augustus Gloop” in The Golden Ticket! Mr. Drost was recently in Broadway Cast of The Phantom of the Opera where he has done more than 2,200 performances.Mr. Drost has nearly 40 students in Broadway shows and Tours including: Music Man Broadway revival 2020, Moulin Rouge, RENT National Tour, Escape to Margaritaville National Tour, Aladdin National Tour, Kinky Boots National Tour, WICKED, Sound of Music National Tour, Jersey Boys, The Phantom of the Opera, The Phantom of the Opera National Tour, An American in Paris (Broadway & National Tour), Tuck Everlasting, Newsies National Tour, Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, Come From Away, The Lion King, Hello Dolly, Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812, Shuffle Along, On The Town, After Midnight, Nice Work If You Can Get It, Chicago, Mary Poppins, Guys & Dolls, West Side Story Movie and Rock of Ages and more…
Michael Minarik – Acting
Michael has been working professsionaly since 1999. From performing on the Tony awards, to building the set for his own show. From regularly singing God Bless America/The national Anthem during the playoffs at Yankee Stadium to playing an arena in Pocatello, Idaho. From introducing Cinderella on the Tony Awards to hustling for his next job on the streets of Manhattan. From working with Broadway legend John Kander for a week on his show “The Happy Time” as the leading man, to taking speakers out of his car to sing at a small gatherings. He has done it all. He has performed on 4 national tours, 3 Broadway shows, many regional gigs as well as concerts and special performances all over the country. He has worked at theme parks as well as at the top of his profession on a Broadway stage.His experience in 20 years of performing is unlike any other in the industry.
Not only a successful performer michael has also produced musicals on and off Broadway. He has a tony nomination as an associate producer of the 26th longest running musical in Broadway history, Rock of Ages. He saw the workshop of the show and realized its value early on and became a part of the producing team. The show ran for almost 6 years with multiple incarnations around the world. He has seen the good and the bad of how a show makes it to Broadway, stays there and makes money. He understands the business side of theater as well as the performing side which makes him an anomaly in this business. Very few if anyone has ever done what Michael has and continues to do on the Broadway circuit and has invaluable knowledge of the industry from both sides of the table. As a Lead producer MIchael took the musical Fat Camp from an idea to winning the NYMF award “best of the festival” in 2009. He brought the show to a workshop then to Cleveland for an out of town tryout then to the ATA theater off-Broadway for a limited run.. He has worked on every level of producing shows and will bring this unique business knowledge to the classroom. Michael is ecstatic to share the acting knowledge that he has garnered over the past 15 years of performing and learning from the best as well as his business acumen with the new students of today. Broadway IS a business and aspiring young performers need to understand that side as well as the artistic side if they want to succeed in today’s market. Michael is one of the very few who will be able to teach both sides from 15 years of experience. He has appeared on Broadway in Les Miserables, Rock of Ages, Matilda and on tour in The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber, Little Women, and Urinetown.
Deanna Doyle – Dance
Deanna Doyle is the fourth generation in her family to be a performer, beginning with her two great-great- aunts who had a sister act on the vaudeville circuit. She was a company member of the Kansas City Ballet, dancing numerous principal roles in ballets choreographed by legends such as Agnes de Mille, Donald McKayle, Twyla Tharp, and Paul Taylor. She studied tap and jazz with her mother and trained at the School of American Ballet and American Ballet Theater. She made her Broadway debut as Meg Giry in Phantom of the Opera, performed as Ivy Smith in the pre-Broadway production of On the Town, and was nominated for an Astaire Award for playing 17-year-old Winnie in Broadway’s Tuck Everlasting. Recently she was seen as the alternate Lise Dassin in the national tour of Christopher Wheeldon’s An American in Paris. Shehasperformedatthe Astaire Awards, Career Transition for Dancers, with The Metropolitan Opera, and American Dance Machine for the 21st Century, and has appeared in national commercials such as Tide, Twix, Kix Cereal, and PNC Bank. When not performing, she teaches ballet at Broadway Dance Center and is the advanced tap teacher at Institute for American Musical Theatre, both in New York City. The daughter of a studio owner, she has been teaching since the age of fourteen and is as passionate about that as she is performing.
Nicholas Cunningham – Dance
Australian born Nicholas Cunningham is the Head of Dance at The Institute for American Musical Theatre in New York City. He graduated from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts. After completing his degree in fine arts, he was awarded the Marten Bequest Scholarship. Cunningham then began his career in Paris dancing at the world-famous Moulin Rouge.Cunningham made his West End debut in Broadway’s Tony award winning show Movin’ Out, directed and choreographed by Twyla Tharp. Preceding that engagement, he joined Matthew Bourne’s company New Adventures starting with an international tour of Swan Lake, which he performed in seven different countries.His expanding accolades in the commercial industry include: Cyndi Lauper, World Pride, The Wendy Williams Show, The Jerry O Show, Regis and Kelly, Good Morning America, The 64th Annual Tony Awards, The Paul O’Grady Show, Royal Variety Performance for Her Majesty The Queen, Toyota, Imogen Heap, Barbour at NYFW, YSL at LFW, McCains, Orangina, Opening Heathrow Terminal 5 for Her Majesty the Queen, Hennessy and Erykah Badu.Cunningham has assisted in four feature films, including The Boat That Rocked, directed by Richard Curtis, and a short film for the launch of the YSL London Fashion Week, in which he also appeared.
That same year he performed as Hanna from Hamburg in the Olivier award winning revival of La Cage aux Folles on West End. He was also featured in the musical film Nine, directed by Oscar winner Rob Marshall.Cunningham is an established choreographer, working with Imogen Heap, The Pet Shop Boys and Swedish famed Peter Joback. As an Associate Choreographer Cunningham has collaborated with mentor, friend and Oliver, Tony and Drama Desk nominated Lynne Page for 12 years. They’ve worked together on Broadway and West End’s La Cage aux Folles, Broadway’s American Psycho, A Little Night Music, Moulin Rouge – The Musical (Preliminary Workshop with Alex Timbers), The Metropolitan Opera’s Marnie, and the Pet Shop Boys “Pandemonium” World Tour.Continuing his career in New York City, Cunningham debuted as the Associate Choreographer, Dance Captain and featured dancer Hanna from Hamburg in the Tony, Drama Desk and Grammy award winning Broadway revival of La Cage aux Folles in 2010. Following a successful run at the Longacre Theatre with La Cage aux Folles, Cunningham joined the company of the longest running Broadway show in musical theatre history, Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber’s, The Phantom of the Opera, which has won over 70 major theatre awards worldwide. Brought on as a vacation swing, Cunningham was later offered a full-time position as a featured dancer and continued the show for over 1500 performances.During his time at Phantom, Cunningham took a leave of absence to join the Broadway company of Michael Moore’s one man play The Terms of My Surrender at the Belasco Theatre, directed by Tony award-winning Michael Mayer.Following these accolades, Cunningham has since performed at the Metropolitan Opera in the American premiere of Marnie, composed by world renowned Nico Muhly, and at The San Francisco Opera in Berlioz’s masterpiece The Trojans, directed by David McVicar.His recent performances include High Button Shoes in the New York City Centers “Encores” program, directed by John Rando and choreographed by Sarah O’Gleby. Following this Cunningham joined the Philadelphia Orchestra, alongside Bradley Cooper and Carey Mulligan, as the associate choreographer and to perform in Bernstein’s Candide, conducted by international conductor Yannick Nezet-Seguin and directed by Kevin Newberry. He then continued his season as an associate choreographer in Chicago and to perform Bernstein’s Mass at the Ravinia Festival with the Marin Alsop, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Paulo Szot, Chicago Children’s Choir, and Vocality. He was part of the featured “Street Chorus” and was a featured dancer alongside four-time Olivier nominated Summer Strallen. The production was taped by an Emmy award-winning team for PBS.
The PBS special will be released in late 2020.Cunningham last joined the company of Judgement Day at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City as the associate choreographer for Anjai Mehra, directed by Richard Jones. The show is currently running till the 10th of January 2020.Cunningham currently teaches at The Institute for American Musical Theatre co-owned by Andrew Drost and Michael Minarik. As Head of Dance he oversees the dance program and guides the unparalleled Broadway faculty to teach from their experiences, listen to the students, conversate, advise and encourage them to seek their joy. He hopes to inspire young artists to follow their dreams and make them become a reality by focusing on refining their craft and to work with purpose and intention.
Ted Keener – Dance
Originally from Pennsylvania, Ted serves on faculty at the Institute for American Musical Theatre as the school’s main ballet teacher. He has danced professionally with Richmond Ballet, The Sacramento Ballet, Smuin Ballet of San Francisco and the National Choreographers Initiative, and has performed all over the United States and Canada with national tours of Fiddler on the Roof and The Phantom of the Opera as the “Slave Master”.Outside of IAMT, Ted is a guest faculty member of Broadway Dance Center and The Pennsylvania School for the Performing Arts. Past teaching credits include The Sacramento Ballet School, Indiana University’s Elective Ballet Program, as well as masterclasses with UNCSA’s Preparatory Ballet Program and Cleveland Playhouse Square’s Broadway Summer Camp.He received his formal ballet training at the North Carolina School of the Arts (Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Dance), The Rock School of PA Ballet and Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, and his teacher training at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. Ted’s classes strive to give dancers of all backgrounds the tools they need to build a strong technical foundation for a healthy career, while keeping a positive and safe environment for them to learn, grow and explore!