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Musical theater group touts scholarship winners and flashback to the eighties

The Creative Youth Theater Foundation has presented scholarship awards to the following members of the Tom Riley Musical Theater Company:
• Brandon Wike of Altoona, a ninth grade student at Keith Junior High School, a full scholarship to Camp Ballibay, a three-week performing arts camp in Camptown, PA.
• Courtney Moyer of Altoona, an eleventh grade student at Bellwood-Antis High School, a full scholarship for one week at the American Dance Training Camp in Nantahala Village, NC.
• Zach Weirich of Hollidaysburg, a tenth grade student at Hollidaysburg High School, a full scholarship for one week to the U.S. Performing Arts Camp for Musical Theater at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
• Nick Finochio of Altoona, a tenth grade student at Bishop Guilfoyle High School, a partial scholarship to record his first full album of original music.
• Sasha Astrakova of Altoona, an eighth grade student at Roosevelt Junior High School, and Katie Riley of Altoona, an eleventh grade student at Altoona Area High School, have received full scholarships to Damn Yankees three-week summer stock in Middleburg, VA., along with Chase Fiore of Altoona, a twelfth grade student at Altoona Area High School and Justin Thomas of Upperville, VA, an eleventh grade student at Fauquier High School, who have received partial scholarships.
• Haley Noel of Blandburg, a twelfth grade student at Glendale High School, a Higher Education Scholarship towards her first semester at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
• Levi Snyder of Duncansville, a twelfth grade student at Hollidaysburg Senior High School, a Higher Education Scholarship towards his first semester at the school of his choice.
The Creative Youth Theater Foundation consists of teenagers in a drama-based theater company in Middleburg, VA and the local Tom Riley Musical Theater Company. The mission of the Creative Youth Theater Foundation is to mentor and nurture teenagers through the performing arts.
“The talent and creativity of these award-winning teenagers are valuable assets to the performing arts and represent the commitment and dedication of all of our teens in the Tom Riley Musical Theater Company,” said Anthea L. Germano, publicist. “These fine young men and women rehearse one weekend every month at the Church in the Middle of the Block in Altoona, and since their formation in 2004 have entertained this community with music, song, and dance at the Blair County Arts Festival, The Church in the Middle of the Block, and DelGrosso’s Amusement Park,” Germano said.
Father’s Day weekend will mark the third year for the Tom Riley Musical Theater Company’s summer performance at DelGrosso’s Amusement Park. This year’s show is a nostalgic and fun-filled experience entitled, Flashback to the Eighties. In this return to the decade of big hair and big hits, the musical group’s 29 teenagers will render selections from Billy Joel to the Bangles and from Michael Jackson to The Police. Performance dates and times are Friday, June 15 at 7 p.m., Saturday, June 16 at 3 and 7 p.m., and Sunday, June 17 at 3 and 7 p.m. Flashback to the Eighties is sponsored by Galliker’s Quality Chekd Dairy.
Formerly known as The Tipton Creek Musical Theater Company, the group was renamed in honor of local media personality Tom Riley who passed away November 2005. Riley was one of the cofounders of the Creative Youth Theater Foundation.
Community support for the Tom Riley Musical Theater Company is provided by its Angel Patrons which include:The Altoona Mirror, DelGrosso’s Amusement Park, DelGrosso Foods, Inc., The Gattuso Family, Holliday Inn Express – Altoona, Norfolk Southern Foundation, Parent Support Team of the Tom Riley Musical Theater Company, and Pepsi Altoona.
Persons and organizations interested in becoming Angel Patrons or having the Tom Riley Musical Theater Company perform at an event can contact artistic directors Tom Sweitzer and Kim Tapper at 540-687-5897.