Downtown Springfield Association
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Downtowner Spotlight: Charley Wasson

April 23, 2018

11-year-old Charley Wasson is one of the downtown community’s brightest stars. Not only is she a fixture in Anvil Customs (owned by her dad, Ryan Wasson)—she’s also an up-and-coming performer who frequents the Springfield Little Theatre stage. She’s been featured in productions like “The Little Mermaid,” “The Music Man,” “Mulan,” “Annie,” “Seussical the Musical” and more. She’s also about to make her Broadway debut via the Broadway Artists Alliance, a program in the heart of New York City that provides professional training for promising young musical theatre performers. She was selected from thousands of applicants to train at this prestigious program, where she’ll work with New York City’s top musical theater casting directors, agents, managers and directors. We sat down with Charley to talk inspiration, goals and her impending foray into the Broadway community.

Downtown Springfield: Hi, Charley! How’d you get involved in the theatre world?

Charley Wasson: When I was a kid, I liked to sing a lot, so I went to Springfield Little Theatre. Then, I did this thing called Broadway Babies when I was four or five years old, and I really liked it. My first show [at Springfield Little Theatre] was “Beauty and the Beast,” and I’ve been doing it ever since.

D.S.: Are you mostly a singer or an actor—or both?

C.W.: Both!

D.S.: What your favorite show you’ve performed in?

C.W.: Probably “Miracle on 34th Street.”

D.S.: Let’s talk about the Broadway Artists Alliance. How did you find out about it?

C.W.: My mom discovered it a few years ago. Back then, I was a little too young to audition, but I saw that applications were open for this year and I said, “Mom, I should totally audition for this!” So we sent in my resume and a few recordings of me performing. I didn’t have to physically go anywhere to audition. And I got accepted!

D.S.: That’s exciting! What will be your focus during the camp this summer?

C.W.: They have “majors,” and I’m in a voice major. So the camp is five days, and you get to sing, act and dance—basically working on your skills to be a “triple threat.” The camp is with real Broadway managers and agents. At the end of the camp, you get to perform in front of managers. So I might get an agent out of it.

D.S.: What’s your ultimate goal?

C.W.: I definitely want to be on Broadway. I would probably want to be in “Matilda.”

D.S.: What’s your favorite part of performing?

C.W.: I love making people smile.

Charley’s next step is raising the funds to complete her training at the Broadway Artists Alliance. Stop by Anvil Customs next Friday, May 4 during First Friday Art Walk to pay Charley a visit and donate to her campaign.