Congratulations to former Patel Conservatory student Jon Viktor Corpuz who scored a role in Julie Taymor’s off Broadway production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
|Jon Viktor Corpuz|
Taymor is most well known for directing the Tony Award winning Broadway production of The Lion King, as well as the Academy Award winning film Frida.
Taymor is giving Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream a new twist, says Corpuz.
“She’s a visionary...the way she’s [directing Midsummer] is very fresh and original,” said Corpuz. “I love watching her work.”
Corpuz, 16, is a native of Tampa who got his start in theater at the Patel Conservatory.
“My first play was at Patel. I was 8 years old, I didn’t know anything about theater,” said Corpuz, who was so upset at the time that he didn’t get the role of his choice as a snake, but instead, ended up getting the lead.
What started as something fun to do turned into his passion. He went on to take various classes at the Conservatory and performed in PCYT’s early productions of Godspell and The Music Man Jr.
He attended Orange Grove Middle School and Blake High School, both performing arts magnet schools, and became active in community theater.
Prior to his sophomore year, he and his mom went to New York City for the summer so he could take classes and research the theater industry.
“We were just testing it out to see what opportunities were available,” said Corpuz.
He auditioned and got in to the Professional Performing Arts School in New York, and now he’s living the dream pursuing his passion.
“I never in a million years thought I’d be here...I feel lucky and I’m enjoying the ride, and taking it all as a learning experience,” he said.
|Corpuz, bottom row, second from left, in the Patel|
Conservatory's 2007 production of The Music Man Jr.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream’s well known cast includes David Harewood, of Homeland, and Kathryn Hunter, who played Mrs. Figg in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
“I’ve been watching some of these actors since I was a little kid, so the fact that I’m in the same room with them and rehearsing with them is like, ‘Wow. How did this happen?’” said Corpuz.
Corpuz plays a Rude Elemental, Taymor’s spin on the Shakespearean fairies.
“We can be water or trees, or anything that adds to the ambience of this mystical world,” said Corpuz.
The production will also feature original music from Oscar winning composer and frequent Taymor collaborator Elliot Goldenthal.
The show is set to open in early November.
“I couldn’t be where I am now without the Patel Conservatory. That’s what sparked my love for this,” said Corpuz. “Being part of a theater that’s so professional and supportive...it was the ultimate learning experience.”