Paper Mill students to present ‘A Whole New World: A Tribute to Alan Menken’

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MILLBURN, NJ — Paper Mill Playhouse has selected students to be a part of the theater’s prestigious Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory for 2022. Members of the competitive conservatory, who earned coveted spots in the various age companies, are directed and choreographed by Paper Mill Playhouse’s professional artistic staff in a fully produced, original concert titled “A Whole New World: A Tribute to Alan Menken.” A show unlike any other produced by Paper Mill Playhouse as part of its “New Voices” performances, this special concert features more than 90 talented young performers, including Rising Star Award winners and nominees. The show draws on the timeless work of Alan Menken, including songs from “Newsies,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Little Shop of Horrors,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” “Sister Act” and more. 

Performances will be held Friday, July 29, at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, July 30, at 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. at Paper Mill Playhouse, 22 Brookside Drive in Millburn. Tickets may be purchased by calling 973-376-4343, online at or by visiting the Paper Mill Playhouse Box Office; tickets may also be purchased for virtual viewing.

“It is with such excitement that we welcome back the staged concert that has been missing from our conservatory program for the last two years due to COVID concerns. We believe that this program allows these young performers an opportunity to thrive and ultimately live their dream of being professional performers. From the first day of class all the way through opening night of ‘New Voices,’ we require our students to rise to the demands of this rigorous program,” said Lisa Cooney, Paper Mill’s director of education, outreach and access. “We ask them to work harder than they ever have before as young performers. Our faculty pushes the students to believe in themselves as professional artists, and as a result, when they move on to college or the professional world, they are ready for the challenges they’ll face. We take great pride when they make a name for themselves on Broadway or in Hollywood and from knowing every member of the conservatory has the skills and the work ethic to serve them in any field.”

Past conservatory students include notables such as Anne Hathaway, Ali Stroker, Laura Benanti, Robert McClure, Jelani Remy and many more.

“‘New Voices’ is an amazing opportunity to see the stars of tomorrow,” said Mark S. Hoebee, Paper Mill’s producing artistic director. “This fully produced, original concert features close to a hundred incredible performers. It is amazing to see these young performers grow into professional artists and grace the stage with an inspiring, heartfelt performance.”

Essex County students who will perform in the show are: Mykhel Duckett, of Glen Ridge; Sylvie Friedman and Jonah Ruderman, both of Livingston; Marianna Daley, Destiny Keith, Avery Sinclair, Zoe Zaslow-Braverman and Alex Iozzio, all of Maplewood; Sid Kamat, Akiv Shah, Siana Sharma, Remi Stein, John Tan, Gabriella Volpicelli, Olivia Shannon and Saniya Kamat, all of the Short Hills section of Millburn; Alexandra Hermans, of North Caldwell; Valeria Flores, of Nutley; Hannah Kelley, Anton MacLachlan and Taylor Terry, all of South Orange; Evangeline Lalande, of Verona; Madeline Hoarle, of West Caldwell; and Kyan Bashkoff, Dylan Crespo and Riley Hahn, all of West Orange.

Photos Courtesy of Paper Mill Playhouse