RENT at Texas State
This fall Cassie got to work with director Kaitlin Hopkins to find new ways to use dance as a means of expression RENT. This included adding a Dream Roger and a Dream Mimi who conveyed through dance the subconscious of the characters. The ensemble was also woven in and out off scenes to create the environment of the East Village. Please check out Photos for more on the show.
Summer at CRT and Heifetz
Cassie had an amazing summer at Connecticut Repertory Theatre starting with directing and choreographing one of her dream shows - A Chorus Line. She also had the opportunity to choreograph the incomparable Leslie Uggams as Momma Rose in Gypsy. Then Cassie was off to Virginia where she taught movement to world class violinists, violists, and cellists at the Heifetz International Music Institute. It was an exploratory experience combining art forms and finding new ways to express physically while playing instruments. Check out Photos and Video for more about the summer shows!
ANYTHING GOES is a hit!
Anything Goes has been proclaimed a smash hit! It opened the new Performing Arts Center at Texas State University and Cassie won the Austin Critics Table Award and the BroadwayWorld Austin Award for Best Choreography! Check out Reviews, Photos, and Video for more on the show!
Cassie started her amazing summer at Connecticut Repertory theatre where she put up 3 shows, each with ten days of rehearsal. She co-directed and choreographed The Drowsy Chaperone starring Wheel of Fortune’s Pat Sajak and Liz Larsen. She choreographed A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and directed and choreographed The Music Man starring NCIS Los Angeles’ Barrett Foa. She ended her summer at Barrington Stage company where she choreographed an acclaimed production of Much Ado About Nothing set in Sicily in the 1930’s.
During an incredible first year as Head of Dance in the Musical Theatre Program at Texas State University, Cassie choreographed Into the Woods and Urinetown (for which she won the Austin Critics Circle Award and a KCACTF Meritorious Achievement Award.)
Mark Hollman, composer of Urinetown, commented that it was some of the best dancing he had seen in a production of this show
“My compliments also to Choreographer Cassie Abate for finding movement-ready moments in a musical that is often empty of dance. Her work on "It Takes Two," the duet between the Baker and his Wife is memorable for its simplicity and its cuteness.” - Broadway World, Into the Woods
“The number one part of Urinetown was undoubtedly Cassie Abate’s fresh and funny choreography. The new head of dance in musical theatre, Abate proved her chops with movement as diverse as the show’s songs.” - Austin Chronicle
Cassie got in touch with her Spanish flair as she choreographed Man of La Mancha starring Terrence Mann, Richie Ruiz and Alix Paige.
Then Cassie was honored to work with Terrence Mann as director when she choreographed Pirates of Penzance starring Sean Martin Hingston, Diane Phelan, and Steve Hayes.
What an incredibly fun season. Check out Reviews for the reception and Photos for images of the productions!
Student Research Symposium
Cassie’s research paper entitled “Emotion Through Tap: The Expressive Qualities of Rhythm, Sound and Style in an American Dance Form” was entered into the Student Research Symposium at San Diego State - one of the top in the nation. Out of over 400 research presentations, Cassie was chosen as one of the 10 President Award Winners - the highest award given. Her paper examines the shift in tap from a presentational art form to a means of emotional expression by studying the history, the effect of different sounds and rhythms and by analyzing video of famous routines of past and present. She then outlines her idea of how to add the emotional element into tap pedagogy.
Click archives below to see what Cassie has been up to!