TETA’s Got Talent !

New Event for TheatreFest!

Announcing an exciting new event during TheatreFest for both students and adults. Have you watched America’s Got Talent and thought, I’m better than that? Well, now you will have the opportunity to show us! Want to practice your audition material before auditions? Try it out the night before here. Maybe you’re just looking for something fun to watch on Friday night to unwind from a long day of workshops. This is your ticket! The very best talent from your peers and students will make you laugh, make you cry, but mostly entertain you! Join us on Friday at TheatreFest for TETA’s Got Talent!

All current TETA members may participate.

Auditions will take place on Friday morning and the competition will be on Friday evening.

Talent must be theatre performance related, ie. singing, acting, dancing. No acrobatics, no instrumentals (although you may accompany yourself).  

A microphone will be provided and you may bring pre-recorded music on CD or ipod for playback.

There will be two categories of judging: Students and Adults. There will be a limit of 30 acts.

Time limit is five minutes. Application can be filled out in advance and emailed in via the TETA website.

There will be three TETA “celebrity” judges.

Prizes will be awarded.

Rod Caspers – B.A., Illinois State University, 1976; M.F.A., The University of Texas at Austin, 1984. For the past five years Rod served as Executive Director of Creative Services for the University of Texas System where he and his colleagues recently received five Lone Star Emmy Awards for creating and producing the PBS series, State of Tomorrow. He has taught and directed at the University of Wisconsin and The University of Texas at Austin. While at UT Austin he also worked in the Office of University Relations, creating and producing large-scale special events for the university – and he received UT's Margaret C. Berry Award for Outstanding Contribution to Student Life. Rod conducts directing and curriculum development workshops throughout the nation and has served as a guest artist/instructor for the Facing History and Ourselves Program in Switzerland, as well as in the Czech Republic. He has adjudicated the University of Texas Interscholastic League's One-Act Play Contest for over twenty years, including the State Contest in both Class 4-A and 1-A. He has directed over 100 productions, receiving numerous production nominations and awards (including directing awards for Big River, The Secret Garden and Honk!). While living in New York, Rod served as Associate Director for GreenPlays, creating and directing several new musicals and cabarets. In Texas he produced and directed the UT Performing Arts Center's 20th Anniversary Gala starring Tommy Tune, Linda Eder and The Broadway Tenors, as well as the We're Texas Milestone Celebration featuring Judy Collins. Most recently Rod directed Slammer for New York's Fringe Festival, Assassins for the University of Texas, The Bat, Austin Lyric Opera's new adaptation of Die Fledermaus and the Music Man for Zilker Theatre Productions. For the past two seasons ha has stage-managed the Radio City Christmas Spectacular Arena Tour starring the Rockettes. Rod is a proud alumnus of the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps.


Michael G. Chin is a professional actor (AEA, AFTRA, SAG) as well as a sanctioned Master instructor and choreographer with the Society of American Fight Directors. He serves as fight director in residence for both The White Horse and Pan Asian Rep in NYC. He has taught/choreographed/consulted on Broadway and in the New York area.  Nationally he has worked at The Barter, Celebration Barn, Burt Reynolds Inst. for Theatre, Muhlenberg Summer Festival, Univ. of Tulsa, The Crossroads, Brown Univ., Cape Cod Community College, BYU, The Hangar, Dickinson College, Louisiana Tech, NY State Theatre Inst., Tennessee Rep, Merrimack Theatre, Off The Square Theatre in Wyoming, Gainesville Theatre Alliance, Univ. of Northern Colorado, IUP and Yale School of Drama. Mr. Chin currently teaches at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA, as well as at Brooklyn College, Pace University, Juilliard and teaches privately for Fights4 all in New York City. He is a student of Northern Style, Shaolin Long Fist Kung Fu.
Shannon Koger , is a wardrobe professional, working in New York.  Her experience includes over 25 Broadway shows, 50 productions at the Metropolitan Opera, over 4 years on ABC’s All My Children, and numerous other television productions, films and music events.  She has also worked around the country in regional theatre and touring productions.  She is a graduate of the UT Austin Department of Theatre and Dance. She recently left War Horse to serve as secretary of local 764.


Cathy Madden, is a specialist in the application of the Alexander Technique to the Performing Arts.  She is a Senior Lecturer for the University of Washington's Professional Actor Training Program, Director of the Alexander Technique Training and Performance Institute in Seattle, Associate Director of BodyChance in Tokyo and Kyoto and a frequent Master Teacher for Alexander Technique and Performing organizations worldwide. She is Theatrical Director for Lucia Neare Theatrical Wonders, former Chair of Alexander Technique International and was one of the featured teachers at the International Congress of Alexander Technique Teachers in Lugano in August 2011.
Mary Ekler, (Musical Director/Pianist) Mary has appeared in various musical capacities (musical director, pianist, composer, arranger, producer, vocalist) around the globe. Her compositions have been performed and recorded by artists such as Helen Reddy, Sergio Mendes, Glenn Yarbrough, and Little Anthony and the Imperials. She has also written music for television, including the series Matlock, for Viewer’s Choice Pay TV and numerous feature films. She has served as Musical Director, keyboardist, vocalist and arranger with the Grammy awarding winning group, Wilson Phillips, and with artists as diverse as Rita Coolidge, Helen Reddy, Glenn Yarbrough, Freda Payne, Stefanie Powers, Lorenzo Lamas, Dale Kristien, Michael Maguire, and Little Anthony and the Imperials.

In the wonderful world of Musical Theatre, Mary has served as Associate Music Director or part of the orchestra for productions of Company, Kismet, 110 in the Shade, Purlie, Side by Side by Sondheim, and The King and I.

Educationally and artistically, Mary is also Musical Director at St. Francis High School in La Canada, CA where West Side Story, Pippin, South Pacific, Fiddler on the Roof, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Les Miserables, Jesus Christ Superstar, Footloose and Miss Saigon have been performed in a state of the art theatre to rave reviews.

Donna McKechnie, Tony Award-winning star of A CHORUS LINE, Ms. McKechnie is regarded internationally as one of Broadway's foremost dancing and singing stars. Donna has recently returned from London after a successful "out of town" tryout with her new cabaret show, "Gypsy in My Soul."

Her cabaret show, MY MUSICAL COMEDY LIFE, which received unanimous raves from New York theater critics, won a MAC AWARD NOMINATION for Best Female Singer and the BACKSTAGE BISTRO AWARD for Outstanding Major Engagement. Donna's full-length auto-biographical theatrical show, INSIDE THE MUSIC (with text by Christopher Durang) captives audiences wherever it is performed.

Donna enjoyed one of her greatest triumphs as Sally in the acclaimed revival of FOLLIES in the spring of 1998. Since that appearance, she choreographed and performed in NO WAY TO TREAT A LADY at the Arts' Theatre in London's West End where she had starred in Cole Porter's CAN-CAN at the Strand a few seasons before.

Some of Ms. McKechnie's Broadway credits include: HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING; A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM (national tour); THE EDUCATION OF HYMAN KAPLAN; SONDHEIM - A MUSICAL TRIBUTE (which she also choreographed); ON THE TOWN; PROMISES, PROMISES; COMPANY and STATE FAIR for which she received the Fred Astaire Award for Best Female Dancer for the 1995-1996 season.

She also starred in dozens of regional theatre productions including Cole Porter's YOU NEVER KNOW at the Pasadena Playhouse, I DO! I DO!, MISALLIANCE, THE GOODBYE GIRL and GYPSY. Ms. McKechnie played the lead in Bob Fosse's last production, a national tour of SWEET CHARITY, for which she was nominated for a Helen Hayes Award.

In 2001, Donna received a nomination for an OVATION AWARD for Best Featured Actress (MACK and MABEL) from the LA Theater Alliance League.

Donna has performed extensively on the concert stage, in cabaret and with symphony orchestras. She made her opera debut in December 1996, guest starring in the San Francisco Opera's production of DIE FLEDERMAUS.

She has appeared as a guest star in numerous television musical specials and dramatic series including FAME, CHEERS, FAMILY TIES, TWIRL and DARK SHADOWS. Donna portrayed The Rose in the film, THE LITTLE PRINCE.


Timothy Mooney, author of the new acting textbook, Acting at the Speed of Life; Conquering Theatrical Style, has given over a hundred thousand students their first introduction to Moliere through his one-man play, "Moliere Than Thou". Mr. Mooney is the former founder and editor of The Script Review and was the Artistic Director of Chicago's Stage Two Theatre, where he produced nearly fifty plays in five years. While most of Stage Two's plays were original works, when they turned to the classics, Mr. Mooney found himself taking on the hilarious world of Moliere, eventually writing seventeen hilarious rhymed variations of Moliere's plays with an impish sense of rhyme (most published by Playscripts, Inc.). These plays have been produced and celebrated around the world, with High School productions of Mooney's The Misanthrope, The Miser, The Imaginary Invalid, and Tartuffe going on to state finals in Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Virginia, North Carolina and Alabama, while his Doctor in Spite of Himself, took third place in the Scottish Community Drama Association National Festival, and was a finalist at Italy's Sanremo Global Education Festival. Tim continues to present Moliere across North America, recently augmenting his repertoire with "Lot o' Shakespeare" (featuring one monologue from every Shakespeare play) while teaching classical acting and occasionally performing his other one-man sci-fi thriller, "Criteria!" Mr. Mooney's latest works include the new collection, The Big Book of Moliere Monologues, and the one man play, The Greatest Speech of All Time.