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      Jean Sullivan
      Communications Director
      732-473-3100 x 3060

    Page Title| Happenings News Stories  2009


    May 29, 2009

    A Rising Star
    Jean Sullivian, May 29, 2009

    LAKEHURST, NEW JERSEY- Taylor Bogan, of Brick, has been chosen as the first recipient of the Rising Stars Program Director’s Choice Award sponsored by the Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn, New Jersey, and Westminster College of the Arts at Rider University, in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. Taylor, a senior at the Ocean County Vocational Technical School’s Performing Arts Academy (PAA), will receive a scholarship for $18,000. per year for the next four years at Westminster College of the Arts, where she will major in acting.

    Taylor was first recognized by the Rising Start Program last year, when she won the ‘Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role’, for her performance as Little Red in PAA’s production of “Into the Woods”. She was then awarded a full scholarship to Paper Mill Playhouse’s competitive Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory, a professional training program.

    Her participation then qualified her for the Director’s Choice award. Taylor says, “Acting has always been my main focus. I had been hesitant to try out for a role in a musical. But when I found out that my school production for my junior year would be ‘Into the Woods’ I knew I had to try. It is one of my favorite shows. I worked as hard as I could, practicing with the sheet music and training with two voice coaches so I would be ready for auditions. The hard work really paid off in so many ways. I got the part as Little Red, which was fantastic, and that led to the wonderful opportunities with the Paper Mill Playhouse.”

    The Performing Arts Academy is a four-year public high school administered by the Ocean County Vocational Technical School district. The Performing Arts Academy is designed to provide performing arts curriculum focused in dance, vocal music, and acting, along with a rigorous college preparatory academic program. The school exists to provide a unique, nurturing, and challenging learning environment for students living in Ocean County who are gifted in the performing arts. Taylor adds, “PAA has prepared me well for college. Our classes are interdisciplinary. There are strong academics intertwined with aspects of the performing arts. It’s a well rounded program.”

    Taylor plans to continue her lessons in voice and piano this summer as she prepares for Westminster’s rigorous program in the Fall.

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