A Note from Director Nicole Capri on The Rep’s Young Artists Production “That 80s Show”

Since 2005, I’ve seen hundreds of aspiring young artists graduate through our program to attend some of the best theatre training programs and universities in the country, become professional recording artists, star in films and national tours, earn their actor’s equity card on The Rep’s stage and become teachers, choreographers, directors, actors and working artists in the competitive field of performing arts. Our SMTI staff has tripled, our casts have quadrupled and our Young Artist’s Guild and “family fan club” is the biggest and best around.

Photo by David Knight, George Elrod and Elizabeth Wheeler sing "Video Killed the Radio Star" in Arkansas Repertory Theatre's Young Artist Production "That 80s Show."

But as educational programming continues to grow and expand, I believe it’s so important to remember where we came from.  It is not my life’s goal to create the biggest program in the country, but it is my dream to create one of the best.  That’s why it’s so important that we retain our sense of family, our integrity and our dedication to growing healthy, working young artists and genuinely good human beings.  My staff and I are committed to one thing above all else – loving and nurturing the young artists and creating a safe, professional environment to learn, grow and express themselves with tough and unconditional love.  This is our promise. This is our charge.

A huge thanks to The Young Artist’s Guild for their tireless hours of service, and for their commitment to award an ever increasing number scholarships to SMTI as well as university study each and every year. Special thanks to our SMTI scholarship sponsors Career Staffing Services and The Rebsamen Fund and to the Stover Family, the Brittain Family, the Boyd Family, the Aitken/Carey Family, Rene Julian and Wendy Brandon for their financial support of this year’s show.  Lastly, my love and thanks to the staff, crew and cast of THAT 80’s SHOW for making this year’s production one of the best one’s yet!

Photo by David Knight, Marina Redlich and Samantha Kordsmeier performing "True Colors" in Arkansas Repertory Theatre's Young Artist Production "That 80s Show."

Nicole Capri is the 2011 Governor’s Arts in Education Award recipient. As Resident Director and Director of Education,  Nicole began her professional theatre career as an intern at The Rep in 1988. Almost twenty years later, she returned to The Rep as Resident Director and Director of Education. Now in its 7th successful year, Nicole is also the founder and director of The Rep’s Summer Musical Theatre Intensive training program for young artists – the fastest growing program in the history of The Rep. A theatre, music and dance major at The University of Memphis and The National Theatre of the Deaf’s professional theatre school, Nicole has directed and/or choreographed more than 100 productions. Favorite credits include; The Rep’s productions of Children of a Lessor God, The Foreigner, Glorious and A Christmas Story, Eve in The Apple Tree (Fairmount Theatre of the Deaf/Cleveland Playhouse/International Tour), “Best Performance” (First International Theatre Festival, Volgograd, Russia), Ram In The Thicket (Off Broadway/Judith Anderson Theatre), “Critics Choice Award” Mary in The Miracle Play and Director/Choreographer/Editor for the world premiere of Rich Mullins’ Canticle of the Plains. However, Nicole’s favorite credit to date is working with the amazing and talented young artists at The Rep!

One thought on “A Note from Director Nicole Capri on The Rep’s Young Artists Production “That 80s Show”

  1. would like to know if the Oct.29, 2011, performace of That 80″s Show was recorded and if i could obtain a copy if so? I was one of the “contestants”, and would love to show my kids…….. Thank you

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