PLANTING THE SEED
When Madison Cichon was 8 years old, her grandparents brought her to see H.M.S. Pinafore at Arizona Broadway Theatre (ABT), and to say she was awestruck would be an understatement. “I had never experienced a show that was so beautiful at a venue that was so unique,” she said.
Recognizing Madison’s interest in theatre, her parents soon enrolled her in ABT’s Summer Academy for Young Performers and its production of Disney’s The Jungle Book. From acting classes with ABT’s Teaching Artists to prop workshops with Mary Rooney, ABT’s Props Master, Madison got to experience an entirely new side of theatre that she had never seen before.
From ACADEMY to MAINSTAGE
The first Mainstage production Madison was cast in was A Christmas Carol in 2008 when she was just 10 years old. In the eleven years since, she has been on ABT’s Mainstage in productions of Sound of Music, Shrek, Hands on a Hardbody, Titanic, and this Christmas she will have the wonderful opportunity to portray Jovie in ELF the Musical. In addition to performing, Madison has worked various other jobs at ABT, and she says they “have helped me to understand just how much hard work and love is put into every production here.”
The impact of ABT, and the family it creates, has been monumental in Madison’s growth into the person she is today.
“ABT taught me how to be a professional (always arriving early, knowing my materials beforehand, doing my homework to come prepared the next day, etc.),” she says.
Working in live theatre gave Madison many important skills, including the ability to think quickly and problem solve. Whether it was a rip in a dress or a flubbed line on stage, Madison learned how to handle all possibilities with self-confidence and grace. She is now a better manager and faster thinker, and those are talents she can use in every situation.
Madison’s experiences with ABT came full circle when she started teaching at the Academy for Young Performers. She is now able to impact new performers in a positive way, just as the Academy’s Teaching Artists did when she was a kid.
“I am forever grateful to everyone who has made my dreams come true for the past 15 years, and I hold them very near and dear to my heart,” she said.
ABT is grateful for Madison, too!