Published On: Mon, Oct 21st, 2013

Patel Conservatory adds new dance class taught by a former Rockette as schedule offer great workshops

The Patel Conservatory and Straz Center in Tampa offers amazing entertainment and educational workshops for Tampa area fans of theater and the arts.

A new and exciting workshop called “Just for Kicks” led by former Radio City Rockette and Broadway dancer Kelly King arrives for students grade 7 to 12 and a separate class for adults.

“When teaching, I strive to instill hard work, training, discipline and the idea that when you put your mind to something, you can accomplish things. It’s like a spiritual movement,” King said in a new press release.


The David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts’ Patel Conservatory Theater will present A Little Princess, on November 14-16 and 21-23 in the TECO Theater.

Written by Tony®-nominated composer and lyricist Andrew Lippa and award-winning book-writer and lyricist Brian Crawley, A Little Princess is based on Francis Hodgson Burnett’s beloved children’s novel and has been made into several films.

This version of A Little Princess features an updated script, score, orchestrations and new material to depict the tale of Sara Crewe. Separated from her father and the open-hearted Africans who have helped him raise her, young Sara is sent to boarding school in London. When Sara’s father is reported dead and his fortune seized, Sara is made a servant to the institution and she is mistreated by the dour headmistress, Miss Minchin. Sara uses her imaginative powers to transform the drab institution into a place of magic and mystery. Sara wins affection from the other boarders and counters all Miss Minchin’s best efforts to degrade her with the grace and virtue of a little princess.

A Little Princess stars Patel Conservatory theater students in grades five through eight and is directed by Jessica K. Scruggs and choreographed by Susan Downey.

“This particular piece is a timeless and imaginative tale that the cast and I are all very passionate about telling,” Scruggs said. “The show itself is challenging, as it was originally done with adult actors rather than children and teens.  However, I have been thoroughly impressed with the talent and professionalism that exists at the Patel Conservatory and the way we have all risen to the occasion and jumped right into the rehearsal process.  I hope to share this beautiful, exciting story with audiences who enjoy theater and classic stories.”


Actor Quentin Darrington (Broadway revival of Ragtime and Broadway national tours of Memphis, The Lion King and The Color Purple) will hold a workshop for actors in grade five through college on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 26-27 from 3 to 7 p.m.

This workshop will focus on acting, voice and movement. Participants should prepare two contrasting monologues and two contrasting songs from published plays or musicals.

(con’t below)

Patel Conservatory logo


Patel Conservatory Resident Casting Director Ellen Jacoby, one of the country’s most in-demand casting directors, will hold an on-camera casting workshop on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 9-10, from 3 to 7 p.m.

The workshop will be open for those in grades five through adult will cover important aspects of on-camera work, such as understanding and maneuvering the film business, dissecting and comparing copy for auditions and developing reliable on-camera acting techniques.


Multiple bands from the Patel Conservatory’s Rock School courses will perform both classic and new rock ‘n’ roll tunes on November 23, 2013.

For all events, tickets and a full calendar, check out their website.

Registration is available by calling 813.222.1002 and more information is available at www.patelconservatory.org. The non-profit Straz Center is committed to arts education as an essential part of its mission, and the fully accredited Patel Conservatory makes it all happen.


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- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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