From the 2014 Lab Company


Thoughts from Past Lab Company Members 

Click HERE to read about the lab company from our Drama League Directing Fellows Perspective. 



"Hangar Lab is life-changing. It helped me discover who I am, on and off stage. - Stephen Emery


“I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to train and perform and be in the Lab Company this summer. I felt part of a true company and the program bridged the gap between the world and training of theatre students to that of theatre professionals (though we are always students)” - Anna DeBlasio


“This is a beautiful environment to practice and expand your craft. It feels safe to take risks in the Lab Company. The KIDDSTUFF series is one of the most wonderful and fulfilling things I've ever been involved in, for both the actors and the children.” – Samuel Ellis

From left to right: Sara Matar, Lecil James, Anastas Varinos, Daniel Ghezzi, Mia Kang, Anna DeBlasio, and Stephen Emery in our KIDDSTUFF production Bunnicula in July 2014.

“The Lab Company is an extraordinary and unique opportunity that I would recommend to any dedicated young theater artist. A summer with the Lab Company will redefine risk taking, adventure, work ethic, and performance. Through practical application of skills in classes, projects, and performance, I have been given the chance to reach for and achieve things I never thought possible in the span of 8 weeks.” – Hannah Zimmerman


“Lab gives actors the opportunity to find joy and excitement in a concentrated, demanding work environment. I find this invaluable.” – Aidan Elsesser


“This was the SINGLE greatest decision I have made for my professional career so far. The Lab Company has given me the opportunity to push myself - both as an actor, and a person - to the greatest degree. I didn't just learn about acting. I learned what it means to be an artist.” – Anastas Varinos

Kelsey Lake in Oedipus, from our Wedge Series in 2014.

“When I started this summer at the Hangar, my greatest fear was leaving unprepared for my future. I was so scared that because I had gone to a liberal arts college instead of a BFA program that I would be miles behind everyone entering my field. The thought of moving to NYC terrified me. I delayed the inevitable, and the sinking feeling in my stomach, with thoughts of settling down in DC, Minneapolis, Chicago, LA... anywhere but NYC. After eight weeks at the Hangar, my mind and personal attitude towards myself have completely shifted. Not only do I now have a huge support network of friends, mentors, teachers, professional contacts, and artists in NYC, but now I'm proud of what makes me different rather than scared of not being the right "type". The Hangar staff, directors, and teachers gave me opportunities to capitalize on the skills that make me unique and proud of myself rather than put me down for having a very different skill set than the rest of my peers. I've learned the power of specializing in the areas where my true passions lie, and I'm leaving Ithaca feeling more proud of myself than I think I ever have in my whole life.” – Mia Kang

“This summer has been my dream summer. From working with artists from a wide variety of backgrounds, to acting in so many insanely different shows, to flourishing under the mentorship of industry professionals who have taught me too many life lessons to count, I am walking away from this experience as an infinitely better artist, but more importantly, a better human. I can't wait to take everything I've learned this summer with me out into the real world.” – Donovan Lockett

“The Lab Company is an extremely immersive and well-rounded summer theater experience that allows you to perform, take classes from industry professionals, and experience the magic that is a summer in Ithaca. It is extremely safe space where students are encouraged to make strong choices and fail big!” – Caroline Gorland

From left to right: Kelsey Lake, Hannah Zimmerman, and Daniel Ghezzi in our 2014 KIDDSTUFF production of Yo, Vikings!

“The Hangar Lab Company really expanded my breadth of knowledge as an actor in both classroom and hands-on production experiences. I got to be in a children's musical, a re-imagined Oedipus, and a world premiere play, all in 8 weeks, and it is so incredible to be able to switch between those style in such a tight schedule - you get to completely focus on acting, and finding new things to add to your performer toolbox. I can definitely say I had a summer well spent, and that I got to be a part of a lovely community of artists!” - Tess Higgins

“Not only does the Hangar Theatre reside in a beautiful location with a great audience, but the experience of producing a show in less than 2 weeks is quite a rewarding experience for an actor looking to work in the industry. Working with different directors on a variety of shows while being able to strengthen your craft in class after 9 hours of rehearsal makes the Hangar unlike any other place.” – Sara Matar

“I had always been afraid of going beyond putting a leg in the water. I had an environment here that told me to trust myself, and I had to, because there wasn't enough time not to! And I am so thankful. I have never felt so playful, so supported, and so excited to do the work of acting. I guess I finally gave myself permission here. I don't have the words to describe what I've learned, how I've changed, and how grateful I am. So, I'll just say thank you.” - Abigail Coryell

From left to right: Anne Norland and Samuel Ellis in our 2014 KIDDSTUFF production of Hare & Tortoise.


Hangar Theatre Lab Company 2014 Mission Statement:  

We, the Hangar Lab Company of 2014, are committed to adventure. We strive to be both a spring board and a safety net for artistic exploration, and in doing so , push our artistry beyond what is comfortable. We value process over results, and prioritize the needs of our ensemble through generosity of spirit.

Our goal is to ignite a sense of discovery in our audiences and incite the opportunity to challenge conventional perceptions of catharsis and community. We strive to funnel our youthful zeal to create theatre that is dynamic, inquisitive and above all, entertaining. We aim to ascertain and develop the relationship that exists between ourselves and the community and serve as a bridge between life-long theatre patrons and the new generation of theatre artists.

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