By Rosemary Pollock
Broadway Dancer Shows BYU Students How its Done
PROVO, UTAH -- After a Broadway tour of "Annie Get Your Gun", BYU
student Paul Canaan and three fellow performers returned to campus to
teach a master class for students focusing on dance and auditioning.
During the workshop Canaan taught the dance audition piece from
"Annie Get Your Gun" and part of a "Cats" dance number.
"No matter what it takes, that's what you have to do," Canaan told
his students. The 24-year-old senior from Novato, California has been
majoring in music and dance theatre. "It's being confident about what
you have to offer the world of performing," he added.
Last November, after an audition in Salt Lake City, Canaan received a
call from the casting agent for "Miss Saigon". "I got a message on
my machine from the casting people, and they said, 'Do you want to
make your Broadway debut in two weeks?'" "I had to drop everything
and go." Canaan was able to complete his Winter 2000 classes, but
will need to complete a few more classes to graduate. "I will
graduate. I'm pursuing a degree, I have four more classes which I
worked out to take when I get back to New York, " he explained.
Canaan performed as a tumbler in "Miss Saigon" for a few months
before the directors announced the show's closing. He auditioned for
"Annie Get Your Gun" and was cast. "I was lucky to get the first two
things I ever auditioned for," he said.
Canaan performed with Showtime Company after attending Ricks College.
It was then that he decided to come to BYU and perform with the Young
Ambassadors. "I loved Young Ambassadors," Canaan said. "I loved the
cast. I loved the creative opportunity Randy gave me to collaborate,
choreograph and direct."
Randy Boothe, who directs the Young Ambassadors, enjoyed his
experience working with Canaan. "He's just got a unique mix of a lot
of characteristics. He can dance and he just has one of those lovely
voices you could listen to all day," Boothe said.
Canaan will tour through June and then plans to return to New York.
"It's great because in New York now, there's a huge network of BYU
kids that live there and go to the ward," Canaan said. "It's really
a great thing for us to have that support."
BYU student turned Broadway dancer
BYU NewsNet 5Feb01 P2
By Wade S. Hansen: NewsNet Staff Writer