When it comes to great nonprofits, I believe Music Theatre of Wichita sets the gold standard. Here is my experience. I was finishing graduate studies in arts administration, pondering the gloomy arts outlook, when a friend suggested I come to Wichita to check out MTW and meet Wayne Bryan. It was just the boost I needed. Bryan became a mentor and showed me possibilities. I met a man with great charisma and passion for the arts, an artistic director who possessed the rare combination of creative vision mixed with business and marketing savvy. I met the core Music Theatre of Wichita staff -- Nancy, Vickie, Mary Sue, Bethany -- all delightful, talented, and equally committed to building the MTW dream. I met Board Members with diverse backgrounds and expertise. I sat in on rehearsals and marveled at the range of talent. Broadway veterans mixed freely with interns, all collaborating with a sense of joy and pride in what they were creating. At the evening’s performance, I witnessed Bryan come out upon the stage to affectionate cheers followed by hushed, rapt attention as he introduced the evening’s tale to an audience hungry for escape. The performance did not disappoint; it was accomplished on all levels. After, Bryan took his position in the lobby, thanking and interacting with audience members as they exited into the night carrying some of the magic with them. Something very special is going on at Century II! My interaction with Wayne Bryan and Music Theatre of Wichita took me from a low ebb to a place of hope for the future of live performance. MTWichita is making a difference. That is why I wanted to include my voice in these reviews. For when it comes to great nonprofits, I believe Music Theatre of Wichita sets the gold standard and provides a golden opportunity for patrons, foundations, corporate sponsors, individual donors -- all who want to ally with a successful and deserving arts organization. Which reminds me … time to pull out my own checkbook …
I have performed in four shows for MTW, and each time has been a splendid experience! The production quality is of Broadway caliber, and the people who run the company are the best! (Wayne Bryan once came to see me in a show at another theatre, and after that cast met and talked with him, they all said "Now, THAT'S what an Artistic Director should be!") Performers often give up longer-running "gigs" in order to work for MTW, because they know that they will be part of a production they can be proud of and look back on with joy for a lifetime.
MTW is the best! I live in Kansas City where we do have summer theatre (Starlight) and there is also Muny in St. Louis. I drive down to Wichita and see the great shows and have done this now for 10 seasons. Lots of great talent at MTW. Wayne Bryan, the producing director, his associates Mark Madama, Nancy Reeves, Josh Larson and Roger Castellano are the best! Music Theatre of Wichita reminds me of what Starlight Theatre, here in Kansas City, use to be before that venue started booking national tours. Music Theatre of Wichita produces all of their own shows. And it's a great starting place for musical theatre students who want a career in professional theatre.Love my MTW!
We love the shows. Our children have been coming since they were so small they brought pillows with them to sit on! Now, one of our daughters is old enough to be in the Target Teen Choir that performs before the shows and she has gained so much confidence from the encouragement and positive energy of the MTW Staff. They are great, positive people providing superb shows and great energy in the community!!
Music Theatre does amazing large scale production in a very short period of time. The quality of work and spectacle that they put on stage is truely amazing. The people who work there are very talented and pleasant to be around.
I have worked for MTW several times, and it is always a wonderful experience. Their productions are top notch, and their educational programs for students are inspiring. What a blessing for this community to have MTW.
My wife and I have had season tickets to MTWichita productions since 1976 and have only missed one production in all this time. We go to dinner with about 12 others before each performance and always look forward to each production with great anticipation. We have been able to attend musical theatre performances on Broadway, West End in London, and venues in Kansas City, Las Vegas, and other locations. MTWichita prductions are at least as good and in most cases better than any of these. Their productions are definitely Broadway quality or better. Our city is fortunate to have Wayne Brysn and his capable staff who continue to develop and make available this excellent entertainment as well as the educational opportunity for the young musical theatre students that make up the summer company and teen choir.
I have been attending MTW productions for many years and the Quality is worthy of a Broadway production. By using some local performers along with the national talent it not only gives the young people expierience with top professionals it encourages the local arts. The production of Les Miserables two seasons ago was fantastic. The use of Faith Northcutt as young Cosette and Gavin Meyer of Wichita was a great opportunity to see a couple very talented young people.
MTWichita has been a great experience for me over the pass 25 years. They produce "Broadway Quality Shows" that are extremely professional and entertaining. We look forward to every new season. A great way to spend a summer night in Wichita.
Music Theatre of Wichita is exceptional! We are truly blessed to have such a great summer theater experience here in Wichita. My husband Jerry has been involved with MTW for years as their photographer, so he is well aware of what goes into each production. The quality of the performances is amazing and some of the most talented performers in the country have not only appeared on the MTW stage, but have gone on to make their careers on Broadway, on film and television. Both of us are also involved as Jester Awards judges, a program which promotes local high school productions and talent. MTW very actively supports and encourages young people throughout the area who are interested in theatre. Music Theatre of Wichita is without a doubt one of THE best things that has ever happened to Wichita!