BACKSTAGE: A “Practically Perfect” Summer Show

Backstage at CCPA is our behind-the-scenes blog. Contributors are students, faculty, and members of our community. 
Joscelyne Tamburri tells us about her experiences as a Year II student, from the classroom to the stage.


Another Opening, another show! Well we made it – the day finally arrived. Our opening night was a huge success. It sold out in minutes, weeks ago, and it was a beautiful night. The audience was full of family and friends and the excitement in the air was palpable. The reviews came back in large numbers and they were glowing. All of the hard work has paid off – Success!.

After the show we had a small reception in the park and we couldn’t help revel a bit in the moment. We’d become a family these past 2 months of rehearsals, and look what we had done together. Opening night cards were given and a couple of the cast members even made “Spoonful of Sugar” mementos for all of us to commemorate the occasion. And what’s a celebration without gifts. One of the traditions of TUTS is to take part in “Secret Friend.” You are assigned a member of the cast to surprise with small personalized goodies, starting with opening night, followed by the occasional treat here and there throughout the rest of the run. My secret friend was the understudy to Michael Banks. It was a lot of fun to assemble things for a 12 year old young man and see him try and guess who it came from, just as much as I am wondering who my Secret Friend is…

Signing the wall.
Signing the wall.

Another long standing tradition will come at the end of the run when we are all invited to sign the walls of the dressing room and officially become Alumni. The walls are riddled with doodles, words of wisdom, signatures of course and other historical references from all of the past shows. One day soon, I will make my mark on the wall to and take my place in TUTS history. It’s kind of fun to read what people wrote and to recognize a few of my own mentors signatures on the wall from years past.

Unfortunately I couldn’t stick around for too long at the opening reception as I had a 5:30am call time for a job on a TV series. By the time I got home and packed up for the next day, I only had time for a couple hours sleep before I had to get back on the road. Thank goodness I’m young, or so people tell me, but it sure didn’t feel that way as I started the car in the dark at 4:15am.

When I look back on this experience later, long after I’ve returned to school and maybe even gone on to other productions, I know that aside from the vivid colours, catchy music and breathtaking dance numbers, what I will remember most is the people. I’ve made so many new friends, learned so much from each and every one of them and feel privileged to share a small piece of the stage with them. These people I have been practicing next to for the past few months are so talented; I am truly in awe. Some have worked in the business since they were young children, many have worked in TV and films. One just recently returned from working for Tokyo Disney, one owns his own film company, another composes their own music. A few have been dancers on cruise ships, and another had a productive career doing voice over work. All of them seem to have a boat load of training and many have degrees or similar education. That’s quite a repertoire this year. Then take another set back and start looking at the Alumni list and you’ll really be blown away. A final fun fact – Our Bird Woman, Cecilia, has been doing shows with TUTS since the 1960’s – that’s dedication. So many people got their start with TUTS, and I’m happy to say that quite a few on that list are CCPA grads (my alma mater). I count my blessings every day that I am fortunate enough to be here.
Thanks TUTS for taking a chance on the young girl from Victoria. I’m so happy I can call myself part of the TUTS family now.

Until next time friends, stay classy and sassy.


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Joscelyne Tamburri

Joscelyne Tamburri

Victoria local Joscelyne Tamburri is a second-year student here at CCPA who is extremely passionate to find new ways to expand her creative palette. She is very grateful to be a part of such an amazing program that allows its students to grow to be the best artists they can possibly be.