AURORA

Education

Classes & Camps


Preparing Students to Perform Like Professionals


Aurora Theatre, the only professional theatre in Gwinnett County, is the ideal place for young people to study the performing arts. What distinguishes Aurora Theatre Academy from other drama classes is that students have the opportunity to rehearse and perform in a professional theatre, and their instructors are working professionals with years of real-world theatrical experience. In addition to receiving training to be a winner on stage, students build confidence, communication and life skills that will be a valuable part of their bright futures. As a non-profit with a deep commitment to educational outreach, classes are reasonably priced at only $200 for a six- to eight-week session.

Why choose Aurora Theatre Academy?

  • Professional Instruction
    Our classes give students the opportunity to study with professionals. Aurora Theatre Academy uses working actors, directors and theatre practitioners from all over the United States.
  • State-of-the-Art Facility
    Our multiple stages showcase your child’s talent.
  • Positive Expression
    Our artistic environment promotes self-confident, cooperative, imaginative children.

Aurora Academy Camp Testimonials

“I’ve learned dancing, singing, and acting techniques that have made me a better actor. Also, I’ve made great friends from attending the Aurora!”
—Wyanda Garner, Student

“It was nice to get up each morning and seeing my new friends and learning great new acting games.”
—Daniel Forbes Jr, Student

“I feel confident now that when I audition for a play, or when performing a show, I will know what everything means and exactly what to do.”
—Caitlin Cavanaugh, Student

“It helped me to develop my acting, singing, and dancing better. Oh yeah I had a blast too.”
—Sam Casey, Student

“I would like to pursue my dream of becoming an actress someday, so coming to this camp was a great experience for me.”
—Delaney Burke, Student

“Jenna is a vibrant 8 year old who is a little shy at first… She comes home excited and can’t wait for her performance at the end of the week!”
—Liz Keyton, Parent

“I gained a lot of new friends and confidence from this experience. It has helped me because I really didn’t like being in front of a lot of people; when I got my script, I wasn’t sure if I could do it, but I did and it was awesome!”
—Bailey Fielder, Student


Fall Classes

Aurora Theatre, the only professional theatre in Gwinnett County, is the ideal place for young people to study the performing arts. What distinguishes Aurora Theatre Academy from other drama classes is that students have the opportunity to rehearse and perform in a professional theatre, and their instructors are working professionals with years of real-world theatrical experience. In addition to receiving training to be a winner on stage, students build confidence, communication and life skills that will be a valuable part of their bright futures. As a non-profit with a deep commitment to educational outreach, classes are reasonably priced at only $200 for a six- to eight-week session.

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Field Trips


Aurora Learning Library

Fully-staged professional productions for elementary schools students. Performed on the Aurora Theatre MainStage on weekday mornings.

Why Learning Library makes a fantastic field trip:

  • Directly related to the curriculum.
  • Contains multiple direct connections to the AKS, vital for student achievement.
  • Comes complete with extensive Study Guide.
  • Title I funding available.
  • Morning program runs about an hour.
  • Includes a performance as well as discussion before and after to reinforce the educational content of the experience.
  • Mindful of Gwinnett County Schools bus schedules.
  • Ample bus parking.

Now Booking Weekday Morning Performances Student Groups

To book your group or for additional information contact
fieldtrips@auroratheatre.com


See what 12,000 Gwinnett County School Children and their teachers are already raving about!

“My students really enjoyed the play! What a wonderful job you all did. I can’t wait to take my family to a play at Aurora!”–Mrs. Millard (Teacher, Walnut Grove Elementary)

“We all LOVED it, it was amazing. My kids from the youngest to the oldest all got something out of it!  We talked about the character’s playing multiple roles, about how much they practice, about what a stage manager does… they got SO much out of it! I love the Aurora Theater and what all you guys do for the kids in the community!”–Tricia Williams (Home School Parent/Teacher)

“My favorite character was the Mouse. Because they were awesome, I would not change anything!”–Francis (About “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”, 6-year old student, Sycamore Elementary)


The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

Adapted by Kathryn Schultz Miller  
From the story by Washington Irving

Directed by Katie Chambers

This October, bring your students to a weekday morning reenactment of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by American literary great Washington Irving. Superstitious schoolmaster Icabod Crane must rely on superior wit against village brute Brom Bones in order to win the hand of the beautiful Katrina, the prettiest gal in Tarrytown. But like any great ghost story, Icabod’s own fears of the legendary Headless Horseman and of a so-called haunted bridge may get the better of him. The thrilling conclusion of this eerie tale will make your heart race. Aurora Theatre Learning Library brings these vivid characters of the 18th century to life in the perfect educational field trip.  

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Beat Bugs: A Musical Adventure

Based on the Netflix original series “BEAT BUGS”  
Created by Josh Wakely  
Written by Sean Cercone & David Abbinanti 

Beat Bugs: A Musical Adventure, a new musical adaptation of the Netflix animated TV series, centers around five pals who explore the world and learn life lessons with a little help from their friends. The show incorporates numerous songs from the iconic Lennon/McCartney catalogue including “All You Need Is Love”, “Come Together”, “Yellow Submarine”, and more! 

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Teen Nation


Aurora Teen Nation
Aurora’s Teen Nation is a tuition-free program for Teens interested in the arts!  All students are welcome to join. They will be invited to special events just for them, have a backstage pass to meet the cast & crew, and learn more about the world of professional Theatre!  Now accepting applications for the 2018-2019 season.  Please email education@auroratheatre.com to obtain an application.

MORE INFO: 
This program was designed for teens who are craving more exposure to the world of professional theatre.  They will be led by Education Coordinator, Renita James. Aurora Teen Nation will provide:

  • Behind-the-scenes access and a Sneak Peek to a Final Preview of each show!
  • After many of the performances Teens will get to meet the Director, Cast, and/or Crew for a Teen Nation Q&A.
  • Pre-show activities tend to include: Theatre Games, discussions related to the themes of the show, and time to socialize with other Gwinnett Teens with a passion for Drama!
  • Bi-annual meetings to serve as a Teen Advisory Board for Aurora, giving them a chance to influence the way Aurora serves Teens across Gwinnett County!
  • They will be required to volunteer once a month at the theatre, where they will learn front of house operations and get to see shows while helping out.

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Apprentice Company 2018-2019


Apprentice Company 2018-2019

Post-Graduate Training Program for Aspiring Professionals

Aurora Theatre is excited to introduce our 2018–19 Apprentice Company! These talented young theatre artists join Aurora Theatre’s staff for a year-long intensive that will prepare them for a career in the arts. The program includes acting, teaching, technical and administrative duties—and they will get valuable performance experience in shows like Newsies, Christmas Canteen, and in our Learning Library Series, which will make them a valuable commodity in this competitive world.

The Aurora Apprentice Company is designed to help emerging artists bridge the gap between Educational and Professional Theatre. Apprentices will participate in a series of classes and workshops with Aurora’s staff, as well as, with guest artists and workshops with Dad’s Garage Theatre Company, Center for Puppetry Arts, Atlanta Shakespeare Company, Drama Inc, and more. This year Aurora welcomes 10 Actors, 1 Stage Management Apprentice, 1 Technical Theatre Apprentice and - new this year - 1 Costume Design Apprentice. AppCo19 joins us from as far as Michigan State University, University of Alabama, and Central Michigan University to as near as UGA, Brenau University, and University of West Georgia! Watch for these fresh young artists on stage, behind the bar, and at all our big events this year!

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AppCo Alumni


The Aurora Apprentice Company is designed to help emerging artists bridge the gap between Educational and Professional Theatre. These talented young theatre artists joined Aurora Theatre’s staff for a year-long intensive that prepared them for a career in the arts. Here are a few of our graduates and where they’ve been since their time at Aurora.


Where are they now?



Elliott Folds (AppCo17) is an Atlanta-based actor, dramaturg, and musician. He is a proud graduate of Aurora Theatre’s 2016-17 Apprentice Company and Kennesaw State University’s Department of Theatre & Performance Studies. In his time in the apprenticeship, he had the pleasure of working on the Suzi-winning productions of The Bridges of Madison County (Michael u/s/Ensemble) and The Three Billy Goats Gruff (Middle Goat, Suzi Bass nomination for Outstanding TYA Ensemble), as well as Grace for President (Robby) and Reindeer Games 2017 (Co-Music Director). He immediately followed the apprenticeship with the AppCo Alumni Series production of A New Brain (Richard), which he also had the distinct privilege to act as dramaturg, as an instrumentalist, and as assistant music director. Additional Atlanta credits include: the one-man comedy Buyer & Cellar (Out Front Theatre Company/ART Station), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Zero Circle Theatre Company), and Damn Yankees (Theatre Buford). As of summer 2018, he can also be found behind the desk at the Aurora box office as well as a performer at Georgia Aquarium. Huge thanks always to everyone at Aurora, but especially Anthony, Ann-Carol, Justin, and Jaclyn.

Rose Alexander (AppCo15) is a proud graduate of AppCo ’15 and Kennesaw State University! While in her apprenticeship, she performed in Mary Poppins (Ensemble, Mary Poppins U/S with Performance) and Les Miserables (Ensemble, Eponine U/S). Post apprenticeship, she has performed in the Aurora/Theatrical Outfit co-production of Memphis, in Tom Key and Friends at Theatrical Outfit, Curious Literary Encounters at 7 Stages, and understudying and performing for a week as Sarah the Blind Librarian in The Toxic Avenger at Horizon Theatre, and most recently, in The Light In The Piazza at Theatrical Outfit. Rose is represented by East Coast Talent Agency.

Katie Causey (AppCo13)  is an actor and comedian living in Atlanta, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia (with two degrees she’s currently not using) and was a member of the first ever Apprenticeship Company at the Aurora Theatre. Since completing the Apprenticeship Katie has immersed herself in Atlanta’s ever growing film industry working with Burger King, the PGA, and Coca-Cola for a variety of commercials. Katie’s main passion, however, is comedy. Whether she is performing stand-up, improvising with the group, BANSHEE Improv, or acting, Katie loves making people laugh. When performing stand-up, Katie enjoys making current events as silly as possible and sharing stories from her time growing up in middle Georgia. For updates check out her website: www.KatieCausey.com or her improv group’s website: www.BansheeImprov.com

Benjamin Davis (AppCo14) is a graduate of the 2013–14 Aurora Theatre Apprentice Company. His professional credits at Aurora over the 2013–14 season include Les Misérables (Courfeyrac/Ensemble; Suzi Award Winning Musical), Christmas Canteen (Ensemble), The Cat in the Hat (Boy), the regional premiere of The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown (Adam US/P), as well as a staged reading of a brand new musical titled Milo at the Movies (Milo), directed by Alexander Greenfield. Benjamin’s most recent Atlanta credits include Brad Majors in The Rocky Horror Show (Actor’s Express), Gar Public in Philadelphia, Here I Come! (Aris Theatre), and Johnny in StinkyKids the Musical(Aurora Theatre & Synchronicity). This past winter he had the opportunity to perform the role of Jim Dillingham in The Gifts of the Magi at Theatrical Outfit. Ben’s film & television credits include The Fat Boy Chronicles, Fun World, The Change-Up, and The D.U.F.F. BenjaminTaylorDavis.com

“Making my professional debut in Les Misérables was a monumental way to start my apprenticeship. But, it was the opportunity to workshop the new musical Milo at the Movies that made a dynamic impact on me during my time at Aurora. I was able to explore new material with a brilliant creative team over the week of the “snowpocalypse.” It was one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my life.”

Shelli Delgado (AppCo14) is a proud alumna of Aurora’s 2013–14 Apprentice Company and most recently seen as Little Red in Into the Woods. Previous Aurora credits include Suzette in Don’t Dress for Dinner, Tigerlily in Peter Pan & Wendy, Les Misérables, Mary Poppins, Cat in the Hat and Amanda in 4000 Miles. Other recent Atlanta credits include Alliance Theatre’s Little Raindrop Songs and A Christmas Carol and Georgia Ensemble Theatre’s And Then They Came for Me. shellidelgado.weebly.com

“So many wonderful artists guided me throughout my apprenticeship, and they all have had a positive impact on my outlook and career. While in Les Misérables, I had the chance to understudy Leslie Bellair, who played Eponine. She is truly an artist that everyone should strive to be—intelligent, generous, humble, and OH. YEAH. THAT’S THE VOICE OF AN ANGEL. It was my first professional production, and I was given the chance to observe a true professional. Everyone should be blessed with an understudy opportunity like that.”

Casey Gardner (AppCo15) has been seen in productions with The Weird Sisters Theatre Project, Gypsy Theatre, and Stone Mountain Park since graduating from Auarora. Recently, she has been touring with the National Theatre for Children and taking trips with them all over the United States. Up next she is fortunate enough to be working with Camp Broadway in cities throughout the southeast. Casey also has a successful photography business specializing in headshots and productions photos. Check out her work at caseymgardner.com. Catch up with her as the official photographer for the Atlanta Musical Theatre Festival started by fellow alumnus Ben Davis.

Renita James (AppCo13) is a proud member of the graduate class of Appco 2013. It was duringthat year that she furthered her love of educational theatre while performing in Unnecessary Monsters and teaching several classes and workshops. Upon completion of the apprenticeship she went on to perform at Stone Mountain Park, Stage Door Players, and Peach State Summer Theatre. She spent time performing and teaching in a variety of settings, including an educational tour with the National Theatre for Children and a starring role in FML: How Carson McCullers Saved My Life. Most recently, Renita was a Teaching Artist Fellow with Metro Theater Company in St. Louis, Missouri. In this fellowship, she taught theatre in residencies and school-based classes, as well as developed and performed in a Theatre for the Very Young piece. Her work focused on using arts integration to address social justice issues and to build community. Renita currently works full-time at Aurora Theatre Company as the Education Coordinator.

Edward McCreary (AppCo14) can currently be seen in Significant Other at Actor’s Express. Other favorite Atlanta roles include Spike in Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike, Billy Bigelow in Carousel, and an ensemble member in Memphis. This summer, Edward returns to the MJCCA to teach the youngins about drama.

“I was immediately treated as a professional, held to those standards, and given opportunities to work on and learn about any aspect of theater I wanted to pursue. The networking we were able to do through workshops and understudy opportunities was invaluable. Watching other actors work gave us goals to strive for, and listening to directors helped us learn how to get there.”

Jacob McKee (AppCo16) is a recent graduate of Aurora’s 2015-2016 Apprentice Company. While an apprentice, Jacob enjoyed many invaluable experiences, including playing Tim Tesla in the world premiere of Tim Tesla and the Terrific Time Machine and assistant directing Into the Woods. He also served as an understudy for Wit and I’m Not Rappaport. Post-apprenticeship, Jacob will be appearing in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Shakespeare Tavern in July and is directing Dani Girl for the 2016 AppCo Alumni Series. Jacob is so very thankful for his year at Aurora and for the mentors he was blessed to find there: Jaclyn, Justin, AC, Anthony, and the whole staff.

Suzanne Stroup (AppCo14) is an actor/singer/educator in the Atlanta area. She was a member of the 2013–14 Aurora Theatre Apprenticeship Company, and was seen there in Prelude to the 4th Concert, Peter Pan & Wendy (Wendy), The Cat in the Hat (Kitten/Thing 2), and The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown (Sam US/P). She has since been fortunate to work with the Aurora Theatre, Gypsy Theatre Company, Alliance Theatre and Theatrical Outfit, as well as the One-Minute Play Festival and the education department at Alliance in many capacities. This summer you can see her as Ariel in Aurora’s Concert Version of The Little Mermaid!  suzannestroup.com

Aurora is absolutely my artistic home. Besides the opportunities to refine my craft during my apprenticeship, the networking and the relationships that I’ve made are what I think about most when I think about my apprenticeship. Aurora is where I always come back to, and to the people who have shaped me into the artist I’ve become.”

Michael Jared Tarver (AppCo13) is an Atlanta born actor who is proud to call this market, and Aurora Theatre specifically, his home. He is filled with gratitude for the lessons taught to him and the oportunities given to him by the staff at Aurora Theatre as an apprentice and now, in his third year, as The Storyteller in A Christmas Carol. Previous roles include Dave Bullanski in All Childish Things (Aurora), Little John in Robin Hood (Aurora), Antipholus of Ephesus in The Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare Tavern) and Little Tuna in Den of Thieves (Fabrefaction). Up next he will be directing in the short play festival at Aris Theatre!

The connections I made as a part of the apprenticeship have turned into many opportunities both at Aurora and other professional theatres in the form of acting, stage managing, and directing gigs. Choosing an apprenticeship is also choosing your artistic home for your time in Atlanta. I chose Aurora because they provided me with a variety of opportunities to learn and practice theatre, but also because it was a place I felt at home with.”

Dane Troy (AppCo14) graduated from the University of Georgia in 2013. At Aurora he worked on: Terror on the Trail, Peter Pan, Lombardi (us/p), Tamer of Horses & The AppCo Showcase. In the year following graduation, Dane was afforded the opportunity to work with Alliance Theater, Horizon Theatre, Theatrical Outfit & Dad’s Garage Theatre Company. In efforts to further his comedic training, Dane moved to Los Angeles in August 2015. He has since immersed himself in long form improvisation programs at the Upright Citizens Brigade: Los Angeles (graduate), iO West (level 4), & the Groundlings (intermediate). Dane has appeared in a few commercials (Coca Cola, Georgia Lottery, Starbucks & eBay (national)) & also made his Television debut on the Amazon Prime show Hand of God as Freddie Hampton (Season 2 Episode 203 & Episode 206). Dane is currently in rehearsal for Killing My Lobster Theatre’s production of Night of the Living Data in San Francisco (late June 2016), as well as, in rehearsals as Cory (US) in California Shakespeare Theatre’s production of Fences, directed Raelle Myrick-Hodges (July 9 – 31 2016). Look for Dane as Buddy in Marin Theatre Company’s production of Native Son (West Coast Premiere) directed by Seret Scott (Jan – Feb 2017)

“There are a few things that impacted me greatly and honestly changed the trajectory of my career. Working at Aurora right out of the collegiate gate really helped me to focus, realize my goals and take steps towards attaining them. There is no law of scarcity. Be fierce and fearless. Thanks Jaclyn, Justin, Anthony & AC! Without each of you, I don’t know where I would be.” 

Tim Whitson (AppCo15) graduated from the Aurora Apprentice Company in April of 2015. While there he worked in several capacities but most notably he played an ensemble role in Mary Poppins and Luigi in The Explorers Club during the 2014-2015 season. The rest of the 2015 found him performing at the Center for Puppetry Arts in Peter Pan playing the titular role among others and performing as Nutty in The Littlest Christmas Tree at Stone Mountain. Currently he is directing a world premiere, multi-lingual adaption of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe aboard the MV Logos Hope. The MV Logos Hope is an internationally known ship that travels around the world bringing knowledge, through selling over 5,000 titles of books, help, by bringing fresh water and reading glasses, and hope to thousands of people every year. He is proud to be working on this unique production with his wife and with the crew of over 350 people from 60 nationalities. He is excited to return to the Atlanta area in 2017 and continue his career as an actor, director and theatre artist.


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