ReCAP: October 2011

CAP21 Alum Lady Gaga hosts MTV Video Music Awards:

Larry Arancio recently spent ten days in Los Angeles with former CAP21 student Lady Gaga working with her team on her performance which opened the MTV Video Music Awards. "She's one of the hardest working people I've ever been with," Larry said. "she's very brave - an artist who's not afraid to make huge choices and totally commit to them."

Check out Lady Gaga's Yoü and I video.

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Alumni Feature October 2011:

This month we sat down to chat with CAP21 Alumni...

Christina Matteucci

CAP21 Let's see what she's been up to...

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

My training at CAP21 commenced in 2001: a tragic year of loss for me personally, for New York City and for the nation as a whole.  Amongst all of this turmoil, I looked for solace by turning to the thing I loved the most – my bridal magazines.  An avid reader since my teenage years, I would console myself for hours flipping through pages of tulle and sugar flowers.  While doing so, I came across the name of a young event designer by the name of David Beahm who had just created the wedding of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas.  This singular moment changed the course of my career and my life.  I assumed Mr. Beahm MUST need an assistant -- and I needed a job.  I simply could not be auditioning at that point in my life.                                              Photo by Joanna Wilson Photography 

With all the subtlety of a stubborn ox, I sent this Mr. David Beahm a cover letter and resume every month for 8 months; until he eventually gave up and hired me.  While I was originally employed as his secretary,Joanna Wilson Photography I quickly attempted to make myself indispensable.  In the almost 10 years since, I've toiled hard to earn the respect of my colleagues and clients.  I've helped to create some of the most talked about social, corporate, celebrity, and not-for-profit events in New York City.  In 2010, I developed and was named Executive Director of:  david beahm destinations, the remote component of our brand.  As a result, I've spent the last two years traveling domestically and internationally; experiencing some of the most luxurious properties the world has to offer; and throughout it all, making the dreams of my clients a reality.

Photo by Joanna Wilson Photography

How did your training at CAP21 help prepare you for what you're doing now?

Quite simply, there is nothing more theatrical in the real world than a special event – be it a wedding, a bar/bat mitzvah, a launch party or fundraiser.  To me, it seemed only natural that if I wasn't going to perform, I might as well dream up some fantastic real-life sets.  Instead of on stages, I am able to watch my designs come to life in ballrooms, tents, libraries and museums.        Photo By Christian Grattan Photography Most importantly, I carry with me the urgency of putting on a live show.  Much like the theater, with special events, you've got one shot to make it happen and at 8pm the curtain rises and the guests arrives (whether you are ready for them – or not).  Most importantly, the collaborative process with my colleagues required to execute our kind of production every weekend continues to be exhilarating ten years later.   

What's your favorite CAP21 story/anecdote?

Apart from running into Bea Arthur in the stalls of the ladies' room?  I guess what I think back fondly on are the wonderful idiosyncrasies of my teachers and classmates.  The way Eliza Ventura hated when someone would shake her hand too softly and then would call you a "wet noodle."  When Ralph Affoumado would hear a horn honk outside and ask you to guess the note (and Adam Jacobs always got it right).  Wendy Waterman correcting us on the "diamond of good speech" in the elevator.  The days Patrick Lovejoy and Rick Faugno would tap circles around the rest of us.  Nicole Martone singing anything Barbara Streisand.  Having a delightful crush on Matthew Morrison (and yes, I still do).  Jesse Factor leaping through the air with strength and beauty like no other.  Those are the little moments I remember – together they make up a glorious mosaic of my days at CAP21.    

What's next for you?

Of course, I would love to find my own Prince Charming, design my storybook wedding, and have a home full of fat, happy, little babies.  However, until that day, I'll continue to kick start the lives of my wonderful Brides and Grooms the only way I know how -- with magic -- and theater.                                                                                                                            Photo by Christopher Lane Photography

For more information about david beahm and david beahm destinations visit www.davidbeahm.com

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ALUMS ON FILM/TV:  Bradford Anderson (General Hospital), Kristen Bell (Gossip Girl, Heroes, House of Lies), Justine Cotsonas (As the World Turns), Melissa Fumero (Gossip Girl), Jamie Lee Kirchner (Mercy), Liza Lapira (Crazy, Stupid Love, Dexter), Karla Mosley (Guiding Light), Ryan Murray (Guiding Light), Matthew Morrison (Glee), Ali Stroker (Sesame Street), Jason Tam (One Life To Live).

ALUMS ON BROADWAY:  Cara Cooper (Jersey Boys), Holly Davis (Sister Act),  Jared Gertner (Book of Morman), Geoffrey Goldberg (Mary Poppins), Liana Hunt (Mamma Mia), Adam Jacobs (The Lion King), Nikki M. James (Book of Mormon), Tony Mansker (Mary Poppins), Dennis Moench (Mary Poppins), Jacob Pinion (Mamma Mia), Nick Spangler (The Book of Mormon).

ALUMS ON TOUR:   Hannah Chin (Mary Poppins), Emily Cramer (SHREK), Elizabeth Early (Mary Poppins), Brandon Espinosa (Bring It On),  Eric Giancola (Mary Poppins), Liana Hunt (Mamma Mia),  Jared Joseph (Dreamgirls), Lisa Kassay (Mary Poppins), Nicole Laurenzi (Mamma Mia), Marissa Lupp (Wicked), Matthew Myers (Jesus Christ Superstar), Dan Pacheco (Wicked), Chuck Rea (Mary Poppins), Ryann Redmond (Bring It On),  Pearl Sun (Next to Normal).