Music Theatre Wichita advances the musical theatre art form by educating and nurturing creators, artists, and audiences, primarily through the production of Broadway-caliber shows.
Behind the Scenes
Music Theatre Wichita was founded in 1972 and has earned an international reputation for excellence.
Each year, MTWichita self-produces five Broadway-scale musical productions, utilizing a unique mixture of top-flight professionals from Broadway along with a steady stream of talented Midwesterners.
The young professionals who join MTWichita each summer gain employment, training, and valuable business contacts. Because of this, MTWichita has alumni in nearly every Broadway musical, and most national tours. Thirty or so collegiate company members, selected through a highly competitive audition process, gain a unique preparation for their careers as aspiring performers. Early-career theatrical artisans and technicians learn from experts in the field, while bringing their own considerable talents to the creation of high-quality productions. Many of those hired as interns or production staff go on to professional careers in theatrical design and production.
The organization is an economic driver in the community, as MTWichita brings more than 65,000 visitors to downtown Wichita each year. About half of the $5 million annual budget is funded by ticket sales. The other half comes from contributions from corporate, private, and foundation donors, as well as renting out costumes and sets.
Educating young people is critical to the mission of MTWichita. The Apprentice Program allows high school students to become involved in all aspects of production—on and offstage. The Jester Awards Program brings positive attention to high school musical productions throughout the state of Kansas. The Trust Company of Kansas Rising Stars Youth Ensemble involves approximately 75 middle and high school students in a group that performs more than 35 times during the summer. And through mainstage productions, youth theatre productions, classes, and camps, each year hundreds of young Wichita-area children receive instruction and gain lifelong skills.
Click here to watch a featurette about the magic that happens behind-the-scenes every season at Music Theatre Wichita.
Want to learn more? Contact the MTWichita office at 316.265.3253.
During its half century of producing, Music Theatre Wichita boasts longevity in its artistic leadership, most especially from Wayne Bryan’s legendary 34 year tenure at the helm of the organization. Those who have occupied the top artistic position at MTWichita are:
Jim Miller, founder: 1972-1979
John Holly: 1980-1988
Wayne Bryan: 1988-2021
Brian J. Marcum: 2021- present