An adventure. A student-run theater company. Mystery ensues. Victoria?
$16 / 90 minutes
In the summer of 2006, Joshua Wilder, MyVision’s co-founder, attended the prestigious Pennsylvania Governor’s School of the Arts for Performance Theater. The Governor’s School experience not only inspired Josh as an artist, but it instilled in him a desire to give back to his community. Upon returning to Philadelphia, Josh was determined to create a theater company that challenged the traditional view of theater and explored the raw emotion of the art. He hoped this new theater company would appeal to the masses of Philadelphia, not just to certain audiences. While at a local coffee shop, Angela Cutrone (co-founder) and Joshua finalized the concept and founded MyVision Theater Ensemble. They held open auditions at the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts. Fifteen of their fellow students auditioned, and ten joined MyVision. These students became the foundation and spirit of MyVision Theater Ensemble.
The new theater company differed from other Philadelphia companies because MyVision focused on the development of young student artists. Every role, from the director to the designers to the actors, was filled by high school students. Josh and Angela organized vigorous classes to teach the members proper acting technique and skills. They challenged the members to write their own productions and lead rehearsals.
The primary goal for MyVision was to create a student movement focused on the process of theater. Josh successfully established the student-run company during his junior year at the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts. The early days required a lot of work and dedication, but on December 1, 2006, MyVision debuted its very first production, Trapped – a show written, produced, and directed by the ensemble. The company received positive reviews and even the opportunity to do an encore performance. With the success of their first show, and knowing what the ensemble had achieved on their own, the members became motivated to move MyVision forward. From that early success, the ensemble has continued, producing three to four shows each year, and training new “visions” to write and act in theater that is provocative and challenging. “Visions” have gone on to college and work as actors, and the work continues for those who wish to present theater that is new and different.
Joshua Wilder received his undergrad degree from Carnegie Mellon University (full scholarship), and graduated from Yale University in 2018 with a MFA Degree in Playwriting. His work is being produced across the country. He remains proud of the movement that he started, and he returns to Philadelphia several times a year to lead workshops with current MyVision members.