Over 20 years of teaching, performing, learning
. . .and growing

 
 
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Vision

Since before the beginning of history, storytelling has always been, and still is, one of the most important skills shared by all cultures. At META, our vision is to utilize dramatic and musical theatre to give young people tools to better understand themselves and their culture.

Mission

At META, we strive to:

01.

Provide opportunities for any and all youth wanting to explore the arts and the very important cultural perspectives that only the arts can provide.

02.

Seek and retain the most talented teachers and trainers we can find to coach our aspiring performers and stagecraft technicians.

03.

Produce shows that encourage our young performers and technicians to discover their full theatre potential - no matter their age, training level, or past experience. 

04.

Give every audience an unsurpassed entertainment experience by performing at our absolute best.

 
 
 

Unsurpassed  Theatre Experience

 
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Process

How do actors really become the character? Where do we start?

Being on stage is easy when you have a director that can make you look and feel good. Say a kid is playing a hero, or a villain, or maybe a quirky comedian. That kid will find, when they really dive into those characters, she will start to feel like those characters. It’s actually quite amazing. For just a moment while they’re onstage, that kid isn’t playing the hero, he is the hero. Through expressing a different side of themselves, the actors explore emotions and awareness they’d never had before. For some kids, all it takes is one show, or one character, to open there eyes to something beautiful inside themselves.

META directors provide quality training in movement (poise, athleticism, and pattern), voice and speech (breath, language, intonation) and psychology (thought, emotion, relationship) to help the actors tell the story of the play. META’s expert instructors and directors try to make being on stage really fun. Our directors work to ensure that even the most serious scenes, tackling some of life’s toughest issues, are safe environments where our young actors can take it step by step. 

Actors with good direction and structured training can quickly begin to master some of these areas, playing a vital role in a shared ensemble that ultimately delivers great performances to every one of their audiences.

Impact

Over the past 20 years, META has produced over 30 plays and musicals providing several generations of young actors opportunities to grow their theatre skills, their cultural knowledge, and their self-confidence. Actors leave META with public speaking and active listening skills, which lead to creative and collaborative individuals. Yes, several of our actors have played on Broadway and other “big” stages in the theatre and film industry. Other META’s thespians have traveled abroad on relief efforts or have gone on to teach internationally. Some have even used their skills to pursue political careers to help change our world. The common thread among many of our Alumni is that life after META includes a trajectory of self-actualization, and proven leadership qualities. 

 

Noteworthy Alumni & Ambassodors

Here's just a few of the ongoing stories that META is proud to be connected with…

Zach & Nathan Hamer "We grew up outside of Mount Vernon, WA and first discovered META Performing Arts in our early youth through a flyer advertising a forthcoming show. Encouraged by our parents, we attended the auditions excited, but unprepared. Uncertain of what to expect; we were welcomed and inspired by the staff and members of META. After a successful first production, we were hooked and stayed involved with META for the remainder of their youth. Our musical and artistic skills were cultivated during their time with META aiding to the formation of our band, KUINKA (formerly Rabbit Wilde)." - To this day, Zach and Nathan collaborate with META on various projects, from music videos to music festivals.

Zach & Nathan Hamer

"We grew up outside of Mount Vernon, WA and first discovered META Performing Arts in our early youth through a flyer advertising a forthcoming show. Encouraged by our parents, we attended the auditions excited, but unprepared. Uncertain of what to expect; we were welcomed and inspired by the staff and members of META. After a successful first production, we were hooked and stayed involved with META for the remainder of their youth. Our musical and artistic skills were cultivated during their time with META aiding to the formation of our band, KUINKA (formerly Rabbit Wilde)." - To this day, Zach and Nathan collaborate with META on various projects, from music videos to music festivals.

Falon Sierra Ever since I was 3 years old I have been singing and performing and I still remember the day that my mom asked me if I wanted to do a musical with META - “How to Eat Like a Child”. I remember saying, “I already know how to eat”, haha. Little did I know that would be the beginning of the rest of my life. Ever since my first musical I have been drawn to the stage, always wanting to be in the spotlight. When I turned 18 I started to get serious with my music. I decided to step away from musical theater and step into the Alternative R&B/Soul world.  Summer of ‘16 I released my first E.P “Beauty in Danger”, it tells the tale of my life in 2016. Now I am performing all over the west coast and I am currently in the amazing competition SOUNDOFF! If I am to win it will open a lot of doors for me in the music world. But I do believe that I would not be where I am if I didn’t get the discipline and training that META and musical theater gave me so many years ago.

Falon Sierra

Ever since I was 3 years old I have been singing and performing and I still remember the day that my mom asked me if I wanted to do a musical with META - “How to Eat Like a Child”. I remember saying, “I already know how to eat”, haha. Little did I know that would be the beginning of the rest of my life. Ever since my first musical I have been drawn to the stage, always wanting to be in the spotlight. When I turned 18 I started to get serious with my music. I decided to step away from musical theater and step into the Alternative R&B/Soul world.  Summer of ‘16 I released my first E.P “Beauty in Danger”, it tells the tale of my life in 2016. Now I am performing all over the west coast and I am currently in the amazing competition SOUNDOFF! If I am to win it will open a lot of doors for me in the music world. But I do believe that I would not be where I am if I didn’t get the discipline and training that META and musical theater gave me so many years ago.

Waylon Johnson "Theater is something indescribable. But if I had to explain what it meant to me, I would say it's almost like a force. It moves people, and creates something huge out of something small, and anyone can possess it. The true secret to theater is to let that force flow through you. My journey began in 6th grade, but has only begun to start in New York City. I have seen the highs and the lows of theater, but the fact of the matter is I love it. You don't just get up and move to New York on your own after high school if you didn't really want it. No matter how many people told me how hard it would be or that my dream was too big, I told them they need to dream harder, that they didn't work hard enough. So my advice to anyone pursuing a career in the arts is having Faith. The ingredients to a healthy career in theater happens to be the same for what it takes to put on a show. Faith in yourself, Faith in your team, and faith that it's what you're called to do. Never give up, and dream big." Follow Waylon on Facebook at Waylon James

Waylon Johnson

"Theater is something indescribable. But if I had to explain what it meant to me, I would say it's almost like a force. It moves people, and creates something huge out of something small, and anyone can possess it. The true secret to theater is to let that force flow through you. My journey began in 6th grade, but has only begun to start in New York City. I have seen the highs and the lows of theater, but the fact of the matter is I love it. You don't just get up and move to New York on your own after high school if you didn't really want it. No matter how many people told me how hard it would be or that my dream was too big, I told them they need to dream harder, that they didn't work hard enough. So my advice to anyone pursuing a career in the arts is having Faith. The ingredients to a healthy career in theater happens to be the same for what it takes to put on a show. Faith in yourself, Faith in your team, and faith that it's what you're called to do. Never give up, and dream big."

Follow Waylon on Facebook at Waylon James

Rachel Kirkpatrick "I was very young when I first became involved in community theater. At that point in my life I didn't have many fears, but I am beyond thankful I was taught that performing in front of an audience shouldn’t be one of them. With each show, I became more skilled in areas of my life that I never imagined could apply outside of a dramatic scene on stage. Public speaking always came easily, (seemingly because if you can sing “Hard Knock Life” in front of a full house, you can probably talk to your class about the powerhouse of the cell, mitochondria), and I was given a chance to be a part of a strong community full of wonderful, talented people who helped me get to where I am today." - Rachel is currently studying at the University of Washington.

Rachel Kirkpatrick

"I was very young when I first became involved in community theater. At that point in my life I didn't have many fears, but I am beyond thankful I was taught that performing in front of an audience shouldn’t be one of them. With each show, I became more skilled in areas of my life that I never imagined could apply outside of a dramatic scene on stage. Public speaking always came easily, (seemingly because if you can sing “Hard Knock Life” in front of a full house, you can probably talk to your class about the powerhouse of the cell, mitochondria), and I was given a chance to be a part of a strong community full of wonderful, talented people who helped me get to where I am today." - Rachel is currently studying at the University of Washington.

Elissa Pemberton "As a kid I was very soft spoken. I looked down at the ground when I spoke and hated any extra attention. When I was 10 years old my parents randomly decided to put me into acting classes. I was terrified, I had no idea what I was expected to do in these "acting classes". I remember my first day perfectly, we were asked to dance around the room like we were a sea sprite. No one had any idea what that was so we all danced around like wild kids. That day my dad was late picking me up. So I just happened to be around for auditions for an upcoming show. Somehow I got a part in that show and continued acting with META Performing Arts for 18 years. It's amazing to look back now and think what a shy timid girl I was. Today I am an outdoor educator. I teach kids about the environment and help install a passion for the wilderness. Without theater I don't think I would have the confidence to speak in front of large groups of people, which is what I have to do for work. I also have a deep passion for traveling the world. I love meeting new people, learning new skills and volunteering around the globe. It can be scary to fully emerse yourself into an unknown situation in a foreign country. I have done this many times and have benefited greatly from it. During my 18 years in theater, I made lifelong friends, developed a relationship within my community and gained numerous skills. I am now a confident, outspoken, independent women who to this day loves dancing like a sea sprite." Eliisa's previous shows include: Pirates of Deception Pass, Wind of a Thousand Tales, Iris, The Kind And I, The Emperor's New Clothes, Fiddler on the Roof, and Fame. " 

Elissa Pemberton

"As a kid I was very soft spoken. I looked down at the ground when I spoke and hated any extra attention. When I was 10 years old my parents randomly decided to put me into acting classes. I was terrified, I had no idea what I was expected to do in these "acting classes". I remember my first day perfectly, we were asked to dance around the room like we were a sea sprite. No one had any idea what that was so we all danced around like wild kids. That day my dad was late picking me up. So I just happened to be around for auditions for an upcoming show. Somehow I got a part in that show and continued acting with META Performing Arts for 18 years. It's amazing to look back now and think what a shy timid girl I was. Today I am an outdoor educator. I teach kids about the environment and help install a passion for the wilderness. Without theater I don't think I would have the confidence to speak in front of large groups of people, which is what I have to do for work. I also have a deep passion for traveling the world. I love meeting new people, learning new skills and volunteering around the globe. It can be scary to fully emerse yourself into an unknown situation in a foreign country. I have done this many times and have benefited greatly from it. During my 18 years in theater, I made lifelong friends, developed a relationship within my community and gained numerous skills. I am now a confident, outspoken, independent women who to this day loves dancing like a sea sprite." Eliisa's previous shows include: Pirates of Deception Pass, Wind of a Thousand Tales, Iris, The Kind And I, The Emperor's New Clothes, Fiddler on the Roof, and Fame.

Jonathan Fine "I’ve been doing shows consistently since middle school, either in school or with community theater (sometimes both!). It didn’t matter if my role was large or small, I wanted to be in it. Either way, you are a part of a community working together in a big way to tell a story, and having fun doing it. Everyone there has different lives, different hobbies, different backgrounds, varying levels of experience in theatre...but they all have one common goal, and that is to put on this show. I think that that is why such strong friendships are formed during shows, and so quickly. Everyone shares the same passion, and they are all helping each other to reach a common goal. It's a beautiful thing, and it's brought me lifelong friendships and great memories. A few times I've gone without doing a show for a few years, and it just calls to me. I yearn to get back into one. It's just too fun and brings me too much joy for me to stay away."

Jonathan Fine

"I’ve been doing shows consistently since middle school, either in school or with community theater (sometimes both!). It didn’t matter if my role was large or small, I wanted to be in it. Either way, you are a part of a community working together in a big way to tell a story, and having fun doing it. Everyone there has different lives, different hobbies, different backgrounds, varying levels of experience in theatre...but they all have one common goal, and that is to put on this show. I think that that is why such strong friendships are formed during shows, and so quickly. Everyone shares the same passion, and they are all helping each other to reach a common goal. It's a beautiful thing, and it's brought me lifelong friendships and great memories. A few times I've gone without doing a show for a few years, and it just calls to me. I yearn to get back into one. It's just too fun and brings me too much joy for me to stay away."

Nate Wheeler I was a boy, who loved stories. I rode stars; dueled super villains; and became unconquerable. But others called me different, and I felt like a freak; so I kept my stories to myself. Then, a true friend came to me. She said, “an Amazonian from META, with hair like fire and an epic passion, needs storytellers. Go to her!” I found my courage, and journeyed to this Amazonian. I told my story, and she said, taking me in her arms, “I will make an actor of you”. My life changed forever; I played roles from T.S. Elliott, S.E. Hinton and Shakespeare in front of thousands. Now as a young man, I stand a warrior, combating the insecurities that crushed me and give courage to those like me, the story lovers. Keep on being different my friends. Past performances include roles in The Outsiders, Romeo & Juliet the Musical, Once Upon a Mattress, CATS, Our Town, and in Mount Vernon High School’s award-winning Concert Choir.

Nate Wheeler

I was a boy, who loved stories. I rode stars; dueled super villains; and became unconquerable. But others called me different, and I felt like a freak; so I kept my stories to myself. Then, a true friend came to me. She said, “an Amazonian from META, with hair like fire and an epic passion, needs storytellers. Go to her!” I found my courage, and journeyed to this Amazonian. I told my story, and she said, taking me in her arms, “I will make an actor of you”. My life changed forever; I played roles from T.S. Elliott, S.E. Hinton and Shakespeare in front of thousands. Now as a young man, I stand a warrior, combating the insecurities that crushed me and give courage to those like me, the story lovers. Keep on being different my friends. Past performances include roles in The Outsiders, Romeo & Juliet the Musical, Once Upon a Mattress, CATS, Our Town, and in Mount Vernon High School’s award-winning Concert Choir.

Jessica Pauley "I have loved theatre since I was six years old. It all began when a Missoula Children's Theatre couple came to my school. I was in first grade and quickly became captivated by the idea of performance. I began working with META, previously known as NW Children's Theatre. When I was ten and my first show with them was "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever".  I found the technical side when I was 14, and continued to work with META all the way through high school. Ending on a high note of stage managing their production of Number the Stars my senior year.  Over the years people have asked me where it all began, and really, META provided the outlet for my creative drive. I was often told that majoring in an art was a bad idea because it can't support you, or that it was an unrealistic dream. But, through God's will, hard work, and determination today I can say that I have my BA in Theatre Production, have already completed a 14 month technical internship in Texas, and am currently working with a professional theatre in northern California. And I LOVE what I do."

Jessica Pauley

"I have loved theatre since I was six years old. It all began when a Missoula Children's Theatre couple came to my school. I was in first grade and quickly became captivated by the idea of performance. I began working with META, previously known as NW Children's Theatre. When I was ten and my first show with them was "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever".  I found the technical side when I was 14, and continued to work with META all the way through high school. Ending on a high note of stage managing their production of Number the Stars my senior year. 

Over the years people have asked me where it all began, and really, META provided the outlet for my creative drive. I was often told that majoring in an art was a bad idea because it can't support you, or that it was an unrealistic dream. But, through God's will, hard work, and determination today I can say that I have my BA in Theatre Production, have already completed a 14 month technical internship in Texas, and am currently working with a professional theatre in northern California. And I LOVE what I do."

Lauren Cline "I have always been a storyteller. As soon as I was able to write, I began to create countless stories, putting pen to paper so the world might be able to meet the characters I saw in my head and learn from them as much as I did. When I was six years old, I learned to tell a story through the keys on a piano, and later through theatre. As I grew older, I sometimes felt that these creations seemed to mean more than real life, and I wished I could be a part of them instead. However, when I had the opportunity to be a part of an incredible cast in a challenging show, I learned something new: where before the story was only mine to tell, I was now just one element, one character, one piece of a much bigger picture. The story we were telling paled in comparison to our story, and this was the one that mattered the most." - Lauren's Past performances include roles in Pippy Long Stocking, Annie, A Christmas Carol, CATS, and in Mount Vernon High School’s award-winning Concert Choir.

Lauren Cline

"I have always been a storyteller. As soon as I was able to write, I began to create countless stories, putting pen to paper so the world might be able to meet the characters I saw in my head and learn from them as much as I did. When I was six years old, I learned to tell a story through the keys on a piano, and later through theatre. As I grew older, I sometimes felt that these creations seemed to mean more than real life, and I wished I could be a part of them instead. However, when I had the opportunity to be a part of an incredible cast in a challenging show, I learned something new: where before the story was only mine to tell, I was now just one element, one character, one piece of a much bigger picture. The story we were telling paled in comparison to our story, and this was the one that mattered the most." - Lauren's Past performances include roles in Pippy Long Stocking, Annie, A Christmas Carol, CATS, and in Mount Vernon High School’s award-winning Concert Choir.

Trevor Hansen I started dancing at the age of 7 in the small town of Mount Vernon, WA. There, I participated in every artistic avenue I could get my hands on. Singing in Mount Vernon High School choir, taking piano lessons, and participating in several musicals with META performing arts, as well as Skagit Valley Community College. Since then, I’ve continued training in classical ballet, tap, jazz, and contemporary through various training programs with companies such as Alonzo King lines (San Francisco) Los Angeles Ballet, Ballet West (Utah) and the university of Las Vegas. Today, I’m currently contracted as a cabaret dancer with Can Can cabaret in Pike place market (Seattle) under the stage name “Dapper Dave.”  When I’m not dancing (contract or freelance), I also enjoy nude and portrait modeling at Gage academy of art, attending concerts, and spending copious amounts of time with my beautiful and talented partner Noah Duffy.

Trevor Hansen

I started dancing at the age of 7 in the small town of Mount Vernon, WA. There, I participated in every artistic avenue I could get my hands on. Singing in Mount Vernon High School choir, taking piano lessons, and participating in several musicals with META performing arts, as well as Skagit Valley Community College. Since then, I’ve continued training in classical ballet, tap, jazz, and contemporary through various training programs with companies such as Alonzo King lines (San Francisco) Los Angeles Ballet, Ballet West (Utah) and the university of Las Vegas. Today, I’m currently contracted as a cabaret dancer with Can Can cabaret in Pike place market (Seattle) under the stage name “Dapper Dave.”  When I’m not dancing (contract or freelance), I also enjoy nude and portrait modeling at Gage academy of art, attending concerts, and spending copious amounts of time with my beautiful and talented partner Noah Duffy.

Samie Spring Detzer | 2010-2014 META Performing Arts not only taught me about theatre, and the deeply satisfying world of artistic expression, but it taught me about civic engagement and personal growth.  A perpetually talkative kid I began acting when I was five years old, a stroke of genius on my mothers part to find a place to filter my energy. I was one of the first members of META Performing Arts (then the Northwest Children's Theatre). I grew up in the wings of the Lincoln Theatre, and the people I met there are some of my oldest and most cherished friends.  During my time at META I played a street urchin, a Pirate of Deception Pass, a Gypsy Robber Girl, a resident of Annatefka, a preacher's son, a Knight at King Arthur's court, a FAME! high schooler and Abigail Williams. Each of these characters stays with me, and brings me such pride. In addition to the nearly 25 plays I did with META, I also worked on the META Board, as a summer program teacher, as a Stage Manager, as a Fundraiser, and eventually as a mentor.  Since finishing my education at META I have gone on to receive a BFA in Theatre form Cornish College of the Arts. I currently work as the Literary and Executive Manager of ACT Theatre, and as the Artistic Director of the delightfully irreverent Washington Ensemble Theatre in Seattle WA. I have worked as an actor at Seattle Children's Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Book-It Rep,Taproot, The Solo Performance Festival, and at the Chicago Improv Festival. In 2015 I became a spokesperson for the #shoutyourabortion movement. I am grateful to META for my start, for my early education, and for taking a chance on a outspoken, loud mouth like me.

Samie Spring Detzer | 2010-2014

META Performing Arts not only taught me about theatre, and the deeply satisfying world of artistic expression, but it taught me about civic engagement and personal growth. 

A perpetually talkative kid I began acting when I was five years old, a stroke of genius on my mothers part to find a place to filter my energy. I was one of the first members of META Performing Arts (then the Northwest Children's Theatre). I grew up in the wings of the Lincoln Theatre, and the people I met there are some of my oldest and most cherished friends.  During my time at META I played a street urchin, a Pirate of Deception Pass, a Gypsy Robber Girl, a resident of Annatefka, a preacher's son, a Knight at King Arthur's court, a FAME! high schooler and Abigail Williams. Each of these characters stays with me, and brings me such pride. In addition to the nearly 25 plays I did with META, I also worked on the META Board, as a summer program teacher, as a Stage Manager, as a Fundraiser, and eventually as a mentor. 

Since finishing my education at META I have gone on to receive a BFA in Theatre form Cornish College of the Arts. I currently work as the Literary and Executive Manager of ACT Theatre, and as the Artistic Director of the delightfully irreverent Washington Ensemble Theatre in Seattle WA. I have worked as an actor at Seattle Children's Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Book-It Rep,Taproot, The Solo Performance Festival, and at the Chicago Improv Festival. In 2015 I became a spokesperson for the #shoutyourabortion movement. I am grateful to META for my start, for my early education, and for taking a chance on a outspoken, loud mouth like me.

Erin Sara DiPeso I was born and raised in Skagit Valley. While I was homeschooled on and off growing up and META served as my was my social outlet as well as a big part of my self-directed education. I made many lifelong friends while performing with META. My time in theater shaped my childhood from age 5 all the way until college. Though rarely find myself on a stage now I use my acting education as well as the teaching and leadership skills I gained in my career in childcare. In my free time I also use my acting and improv skills playing story games (Think indy Dungeons & Dragons meets creative writing and acting). 

Erin Sara DiPeso

I was born and raised in Skagit Valley. While I was homeschooled on and off growing up and META served as my was my social outlet as well as a big part of my self-directed education. I made many lifelong friends while performing with META. My time in theater shaped my childhood from age 5 all the way until college. Though rarely find myself on a stage now I use my acting education as well as the teaching and leadership skills I gained in my career in childcare. In my free time I also use my acting and improv skills playing story games (Think indy Dungeons & Dragons meets creative writing and acting). 

 

Play Your Part

 
 
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