We are so excited to welcome two special guests to our teen camp this year!
Artist in Residency
Patrick Wetzel – Patrick is excited to be back at Spotlight Productions having previously worked on Robin Hood and Bye Bye Birdie. He has worked with Missy Sullivan on countless shows including South Pacific, Barnum, Guys and Dolls, The Matchmaker, Hello Dolly and The Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice Review just to name a few and he is thrilled to be working with her once again. THE PROM holds a special place in his heart as he just finished performing the role of Barry Glickman on the national tour. Patrick has worked in professional theater for over 30 years. He has worked extensively on Broadway making his debut in the original Broadway musical AIN'T BROADWAY GRAND. Some other Broadway highlights include ALL ABOUT ME (with Dame Edna), SPAMALOT (directed by Mike Nichols), THE DROWSY CHAPERONE (George, the best man), THE PRODUCERS, THOU SHALT NOT (score by Harry Connick Jr., directed by Susan Stroman) and ANNIE GET YOUR GUN (with Bernadette Peters and a very young Nick Jonas!). Patrick has worked theater in many different capacities over the years. A few other Broadway highlights include ALADDIN (Resident Director), TUCK EVERLASTING (Associate Director), FROZEN (Stage Manager), SOMETHING ROTTEN (Stage Manager), ON THE TOWN (Stage Manager). Some touring and regional highlights include THE PROM (Barry Glickman - 1st National Tour), BILLY ELLIOT (Mr. Braithwaite – Helen Hayes nomination), DAMES AT SEA (Lucky - Bay Street Theater), THE PRODUCERS (with Jason Alexander and Martin Short - LA Company), CINDERELLA (with Eartha Kitt), 42ND STREET (Andy Lee - European tour), CRAZY FOR YOU (Bobby standby - European tour), SINGIN' IN THE RAIN (2nd National Tour) and THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD (National tour). Patrick's film work includes The Prom (with Meryl Streep and Nicole Kidman), The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete (with Jennifer Hudson), A Christmas Carol (with Jim Carrey) and The Producers (with Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane). Patrick's work on Spotlight's production of THE PROM is dedicated to the late Joan Winslow. She not only worked on many Spotlight shows over the years but she was also instrumental in getting Patrick's career started. This one's for you, Joan!
Master Class Artist
Donovan E. Mitchell is an actor, producer, writer, and improviser from Virginia Beach, Virginia. A graduate of The Governor’s School for the Arts, he then received his musical theater and acting training from Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama with a semester abroad at The Moscow Art Theater School in Russia. Theater credits include: Six Degrees of Separation (Broadway), Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Geffen Playhouse, Center Theater Group, Signature Theatre, and 59e59 Theaters. Film/TV credits include The Other Two, NCIS: New Orleans, Friends From College, Law and Order: SVU, FBI, City On A Hill, East New York, and most recently Manifest. He has performed sketch and improv with The Second City and The Groundlings School in Los Angeles. As a teacher he has taught at The Governor’s School for the Arts, Improvolution in New York City, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Incoming Chair, Department of Theatre and FIlm at The Governor’s School for the Arts.
Spotlight Productions is more than just a summer drama camp. It's an experience your child will treasure for many years to come.
"Spotlight is the only summer camp that will challenge your theater skills, provide you lasting friendships, and introduce to you new perspectives and opportunities to lead in a creative environment. I entered as a 'techie'...and also left as a techie--who knew how to act and who had a new family of friends. Spotlight really is a whole world of theatre condensed into just a couple weeks." - Trip Rumble, former Spotlight camper
"When I turned twelve, I decided I wanted to devote my life to telling stories. I went to my parents and said, 'Mom. Dad. I want to be an actor.' My parents were both accountants, but they supported me from day one. They found Spotlight Productions and, just like that, it all started. I was an only child, and lonely growing up. From day one at Spotlight, I felt for the first time like I belonged somewhere; as if everyone was speaking a language I understood. For seven years, my summers centered around Spotlight. It became a mile marker for how I was growing, and who I was becoming. Missy and Penny became distant relatives, as invested in my future as they were the talents they were fostering.
Since I left college, I have made my living as a professional storyteller. It’s played out in a way that twelve year old on her first day of camp never would have imagined. I have travelled the country at regional repertory theaters, performed the greatest roles Shakespeare has to offer, gone to clown college in the Redwoods of California and finally, I found my home in Williamsburg, VA. For the past seven years, I’ve had the role of a lifetime portraying and studying James Madison at Colonial Williamsburg. In 2018, I founded my own theatre company that lets me produce my own work, write my own material, and reach countless audiences throughout the United States. I am still acting, but have added so many mediums in which I tell my stories. Including music, directing, and authoring books (My first will be finished this summer!) I have given lectures to foreign dignitaries, the US Senate, I have been interviewed by TIME, however the best thing I have done is speak to kids. They remind me of where I started and, when one of them tells me they want to be an actor, I wish so desperately they find a home like I did in Spotlight Productions. My dreams have changed a lot since that first production of Guys and Dolls, but the lessons never do. Spotlight listens to the dreams of their campers, and they make true magic in making sure those dreams don’t diminish, even after a camper grows up." - Bryan Austin, Former Spotlight Camper