Kids from Wisconsin returns for its 48th show season with a group of 33 youth representing 29 hometowns across Wisconsin, including three local youth.
The troupe will perform in the UW–Platteville Center for the Arts Concert Hall Saturday, July 30 at 7 p.m.
This year’s tour theme is “Sing!” borrowed from the same-titled song by two-time Grammy-winning a capella group Pentatonix. All proceeds will benefit UW–Platteville music scholarships.
Earlier that day, in the same location, the troupe will host a free outreach program for children ages 7–13 (see story, page 11B) from 2 to 3 p.m. The program is an opportunity for area children to meet the Kids from Wisconsin and learn dance steps and music. To reserve a spot, register your child at https://goo.gl/2Msbqf or go to www.kidsfromwisconsin.org/outreach/ for more information.
Kids from Wisconsin, consisting of 20 singers/dancers and a 13-piece show band, showcases youth in a full musical revue for all ages, produced in collaboration with some of the country’s best writers, arrangers and choreographers. Each summer, the group performs for more than 120,000 people across Wisconsin and the Midwest, maintaining a broad repertoire of music that includes American favorites — Big Band, ’50s to ’80s classics, Motown, country, Broadway and current top hits — in a two-hour, fully-staged performance.
Area youth in this year’s troupe who will perform their hometown shows at UW–Platteville include Ross Spadaro, a sophomore business administration major and musical theater minor at UW–Platteville, from New Berlin; Arianna Day, a vocal performance major and business administration minor at Viterbo University in La Crosse, from Platteville; and Jonah Zimpel, a recent graduate of Boscobel High School, who will attend college in the fall.
The troupe was brought to the university by Dr. Susan Savage Day, associate professor of voice, vocal area coordinator and musical director of musical theatre at UW–Platteville, Arianna’s mother.
“As chair of the music scholarship committee, I wanted to bring Kids from Wisconsin to UW–Platteville to offer the community an opportunity to see these talented Kids perform and raise funds for music scholarships for our future music majors and minors,” said Day. “UW–Platteville music scholarship students have been featured in the band in prior years. This summer, Ross, who was a musical scholarship recipient, is the first singer/dancer from UW–Platteville.
“The Platteville community has always been an appreciative audience and a huge supporter of Kids from Wisconsin. The performance is top notch, with singing, dancing and a terrific band that leaves audiences feeling great.”
Spadaro performed lead roles in “Grease,” “Fiddler on the Roof” and “The Wizard of Oz” in high school and “Company” and “The Drowsy Chaperone” at UW–Platteville. He earned a Tommy Award for his portrayal of Jean Valjean in “Les Miserables.” Spadaro earned an exemplary award at the State Solo and Ensemble Festival and sang three years with the Wisconsin State Honors Choir. He studies voice with Day and dance with Connie Furlan, academic staff and faculty choreographer at UW–Platteville.
“I am excited for my first year as a principal singer/dancer in Kids from Wisconsin,” said Spadaro. “I am also very grateful that I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to perform with such a high caliber and honorable group.”
Arianna Day, a graduate of Platteville High School, was chosen to join Kids from Wisconsin for the third year. She is a member of the Viterbo vocal jazz ensemble, show choir and concert choir. This past fall, she held her first role, Damon, in Viterbo’s production of Handel’s opera, “Acis and Galatea. In September, Day will perform the role of Madame Herz in Mozart’s opera, “The Impresario” at Viterbo.
In high school, Day was selected as a member of the Wisconsin School Music Association High School Honor Choirs for three years; Wisconsin Choral Directors Association Honor Choir; The Open Jar Institute in New York City, New York; many Heartland Festival productions; and played Gilmer in “Godspell” at UW-Platteville. She was a Tommy Award recipient of Outstanding Lead Performer for her performance of Aida in “Aida” at Platteville High School. Day was a principal singer/dancer in 2015 and a camp alternate for Kids from Wisconsin in 2013.
“I am excited to travel with the Kids from Wisconsin once again this summer,” said Day.
Zimpel will be a principal singer/dancer with Kids from Wisconsin for his second summer. He has studied jazz, tap and lyrical since the age of six as well as had vocal lessons with Brandi Dreher at Gotta Dance Academy of Performing Arts in Lancaster. He has participated in both regional and national dance and vocal competitions.
Zimpel performed in Boscobel High School’s musical “Little Shop of Horrors” with the lead role of Seymour. He was also selected for High School Honors Choir as well as received solo awards at State Solo and Ensemble Contest.
“I am thrilled to be a principal singer/dancer with Kids from Wisconsin for my second summer,” said Zimpel.
Seating for the show is reserved. Tickets are $14 for adults and $8 for children younger than 18 and UW–Platteville students. To reserve tickets, call the University Box Office, 342-1298, or reserve them online at tickets.uwplatt.edu.