Zilker Theatre Productions – Magic On The Hillside

Craig Barron (offscreen): Zilker is an invaluable
tradition – it’s a gem in Austin. We offer high quality theater available to
anybody for free! And it’s it’s in many cases, it’s kids’
first exposure to theater. It’s so many people’s first exposure to
theater or maybe their only their only taste of theater throughout the year. Craig Barron: We offer music and theater and
an experience like no other. Sitting out on the hillside during the summer
looking up at the stars and watching the shows – it’s magical! It is truly magical and
I’m so so excited to be a part. Makes me teary. Melita Noël (offscreen): So you were maybe
here back at one of our very first shows. Fan: Yes, I think I was. Melita: 1959 or a little later! Fan: Yeah! So definitely my parents made sure that we
came, and then I made sure that my children came Melita Noël: So to find out that here in Austin, Texas,
we had something that was offering musical theater at no cost to the entire community,
both training for interns, backstage, at the lighting board, at the sound board, you know,
all those different places, for high-school interns and also for actors
we do these free audition workshops – I NEVER had anything like that! I had to pay hundreds of dollars to go to
this camp and learn what it meant to be in a professional level musical! Desiree Sibole-Laing: The
Zilker Theatre Productions family is just so incredible! Everyone is so warm and loving. I mean, you really couldn’t ask for a better
group to be a part of. And you know, everyone is there volunteering,
and they just do it for the love of the arts! And you can totally feel that. Helena Laing: Let’s try this! And I did it, and then they were just like
“you’re Little Inez” and I’m like. It was my first professional production, and
I think it’s probably going to be my favorite ‘cuz I knew it was the first one that said
this is what you want to do in life, this is what you’re gonna do! So I had this whole family backstage with
Jacqui as my mom, Courtney as my sister and Vincent as my brother! And so we would always warm up together. So I would do like vocal warmups with them
and he was like really intense and I’m like “oooh!, okay!” And then he taught me some of this fancy footwork
that he always does on stage. So I taught… so I ended up teaching that
this year to a lot of different people. And they’re just like “oh my god
how did you learn that?” and I’m just like
“Zilker Theatre Productions”.One thing that I really appreciate about
Zilker Theare Productions’ mission is the emphasis on community access
for the entire community. So it’s accessible in terms of an American
Sign Language interpretive performance night, and we’re trying to expand that. And that’s something that, the more funding
have, the more we’re going to be able to offer accessible experiences for the entire
community. So we have ASL interpretive performances,
audio description for those with visual impairment and who are legally blind as a way to describe
what’s going on up on the stage, so that they can not only hear what’s going on,
but also to experience some of the visuals described very succinctly for them. So they get a sense of the color and the motion
and the magic that’s happening. Craig Barron (offscreen):
The support of Sponsors is key. Without that, we wouldn’t exist. You can’t look out across the hillside without
seeing how valuable the Summer Musical is! Dawn Ward: My family and I have been going to the
Zilker Hillside Theatre since 1991 “Into The Woods” and we love it! And we love, now that our company is donating,
because it saves us from having to sit there all day to hold down front row seats! Melita Noël (offscreen): What’s your favorite
part about being a Sponsor, because 3M has sponsored for a number of years? Russell Bridges: Well, one is making
the performance available to the
entire community, that’s the most important thing. But we get to have our company night, and
our employees just love piling their kids in the car, and the blankets and the picnic
and going and sitting on the hillside and enjoying their evening. Melita Noël: When businesses ask me
“Why should I support the Zilker Summer Musical”, I say this… your name associated with this historic and
magical experience will be remembered!

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