Student-run Upstage Theater presents ‘Follies’ this weekend in Mountain View
"'We’re not depending on a grade. We are not getting paid. Nor are we asking anyone for a participation fee,” he said. “So, really what’s riding on this is doing a show with people that you love doing shows and creating art with. And that, at least in my book – and I know in a lot of other people’s as well – trumps everything else; that is at the top.'"
Read the article by Kaitlyn Huang for Los Altos Town Crier about Follies, Val's recent directing project, featuring an interview with him.
This multitasking teen is at the forefront of the local theater scene
At four years old, Val Zvinyatskovsky was putting on his own ballet productions for his family in their living room. By the age of eight, he was confident that theater would be his passion for life. Now, at sixteen, he’s one of the Bay Area’s most active student actors."
Read the article by Dan Honigstein for Midpeninsula Post
Upstage Theater creates “tight-knit” community through teen-run productions
"The curtains rise and actors step onto the stage, ready to begin their performance of ‘Falsettos’ for Upstage Theater. As the actors begin, the audience may not realize that every set change, lighting effect, costume or even the staging of the actors was planned, created and perfected by a group of teenagers; only two adults are involved in day-to-day operations."
Read the article by Avni Rajagopal for Midpeninsula Post about Upstage Theater, which Val artistic directs, featuring an interview with him.
Upstage Theater Takes On FALSETTOS!
"Director Val Zvinyatskovsky says, 'This story is just as important now as when it premiered in 1992. It paints a distinct historical picture for the younger generation, reignites a childhood memory for their parents, and offers a window back into how life was for their grandparents.' At the completely teen-run company, Upstage Theater's production stars exclusively young adults from all around the San Francisco Bay Area."
"Every so often we are fortunate to cross paths with somebody with that intangible spark that makes them stand out in a really good way. They bring enthusiasm to all they do, and they inspire others to reach far beyond what seems possible. I ran into such a person some years ago, and I’ve been amazed by what this young fellow has done and continues to do."
Read the article by Val's mentor, Ande Jacobson, music director and founder of A Good Reed Review here:
The Shelter Near Fireplace (Cabaret) was a weekly variety show created and performed by Val on Instagram live every Friday. Each performance would include a set of Val's piano-voice renditions of popular classics or new hits. The night would then transition to a magic segment where fresh, new close-up magic would be presented. The show would finish off with a topical parody of either a famous ballad or musical theatre hit. All this, next to a fireplace! The intention was to create a relaxing space, that is nevertheless entertaining, for viewers to enjoy and start the weekend with, while in quarantine. SNF closed after a successful 7-week run and is planning to reopen in the fall with a slightly wider schedule.
For a community service project at his school, Val chose to help the Theatre
Development Fund non-profit organization as he strongly believes and supports their values and the work that they do to try and bring theatre to everyone. As an actor in community theatre sensory-friendly productions, he was hooked on TDF when he realized that this kind of work for the community is done on a professional level. Read more about the project, Val's participation, the organization, and more!
A Good Reed Review is a website run by Sunnyvale Community Player's "Urinetown" orchestra director, Ande Jacobson. Val and Ande have worked together on many shows as actor-conductor and most recently as musician-conductor respectively. Check out the article promoting the Urinetown production as well as talking about Val's experience in his first orchestra pit.
"While most of the players are adults and are very experienced in the orchestra pits around the Bay Area, one player is enjoying his first pit experience with this show. Keyboard player Val Zvinyatskovsky is only 13 years old"