Company Login


Renee Palermo is CAP21's September 2011 Featured Alumi!

What have you been up to since you finished training at CAP21?

After I graduated from CAP, I did the NYC actor/auditioning thing for about seven years. I was very fortunate to work on national tours and at many wonderful regional theatres right out of school. During that time I also taught dance (my minor was in Dance Education). I even taught in CAP 21's summer program. Right after I got married, I began commuting to NJ to teach at the studio that I now own and run as the Artistic Director. Over the past 9 years, with great collaborators, I have built up a very solid program that teaches all forms of dance, as well as acting and voice to children ages 2-18. We have amazingly talented teachers, most of who commute from the city, to work with our students. We train not only recreational kids, but also kids who are looking to pursue Musical Theatre as a career. My "Company Kids" as we refer to them are on a set curriculum that I designed based on the core classes I was given as a freshman at CAP 21. I aim to help children become "actors who sing and dance" as I was taught to be at CAP 21. I have also written a young children's Musical Theatre Curriculum called Leap 'N Learn© for Musical Theatre. As of last summer, that book is being sold to studio owners and those who teach higher education all over the world.

How do you balance running a business and raising a family?

Very carefully! My husband and I have 3 children, ages 5, 3, and 5 months. My husband also owns his own business and works in the city. Then there's the studio; which consists of my business partner, 2 admin, 15 teachers, 300 students, their 600 parents, and myself! It's a wonderful challenge that is exciting, rewarding, and exhausting. Here's what I've learned so far that I find works for me...

Speaking from your expierences, how was it transitioning from Performer to Teacher to Business Owner/Artistic Director?

I think I am lucky in that my transitions just kind of happened. Right time, right, place, and my willingness to take the risk made for the perfect storm. People often ask me if I miss performing, and I honestly don't. I have a passion for working with children and directing. I also knew that I wanted to have a family and live outside the city, and this career allows me that while still being creative. I think that was the key for me, staying creative, and finding a different type of outlet for the musical theatre dork that I always be. I do wish that I had taken a few business courses when I was in school. I have had to learn most of it as I go. I also learned that I love running a business!

What's next for you?

Well, I am famous for having big plans! I'm currently writing a Musical Theatre summer camp syllabus to go sell along with the original one I wrote 2 years ago. I have started teaching teachers at Dance Teacher Conventions, and I look forward to doing more of that type of work. As for the studio, I would love to have a second and/or bigger location that is an arts complex, including a small theatre and other performance spaces. I see that space as one that could house other arts businesses, kids art classes, film classes, writing, baby music classes, etc. I would like to become a real arts center within the community. I would also like to have a semi professional theatre company, a sleep away summer theatre camp, and an arts high school! Just a few things √Čbut no more kids of my own. We really love the three we have and they keep us plenty busy.

Great thanks so much Renee!

Read Original Article      Back to Testimonials