Audition Coaching


Get tips about songs, monologues, and college audition repertoire from faculty with extensive experience as performers, educators, and program entry audition panelists.

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Meet the faculty experts.

Alvaro Garcia


Alvaro Garcia, native of Spain, studied conducting with Delta David Gier and Professors Lawrence Leighton Smith and Gustav Meier. He earned two Master of Music degrees from Yale University in viola and orchestral conducting in 1999 and 2001. Mr. Garcia has held positions as Assistant Conductor for the Yale Symphony Orchestra, the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra in Connecticut, and the Greater Bridgeport Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he has also collaborated with conductors Ransom Wilson, Jesse Levine, Dante Anzolini, Lawrence Leighton Smith, Gustav Meier and Shinik Hahm. Mr. Garcia has conducted the Yale Philharmonia, Solisti New York orchestra, Norwalk Symphony, Racine Symphony, Kenosha Symphony (Feb 2012), Daejeon Philharmonic – South Korea, and Festival des Artes Orchestra – Brazil. In addition to his conducting, he also performs viola in solo recitals and in chamber groups. As an international musician, Mr. Garcia has performed in Spain, Italy, England, Portugal, South Korea, Brazil, and throughout the United States of America. Mr. Garcia has been actively involved as a music educator in the Kenosha and Racine communities in Wisconsin. He works as a clinician and educator at the middle, high and college level and he has conducted in several occasions the Kenosha Unified Orchestra Festival and the Racine Unified Orchestra Festival. At the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, he conducted many opera and musical productions. Alvaro Garcia is a Professor of Music and Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities at UW-Parkside. He is the music Director of the UW-Parkside Symphony and the UW-Parkside Community Orchestra, and teaches viola and chamber music.

Laura Rexroth


Laura Rexroth joined the music faculty at the University of Wisconsin Parkside in 2014. In addition to her duties as conductor of the UW-Parkside Wind Ensemble and UW-Parkside Community Band, she teaches courses in world music, music education, music history, and conducting. Prior to her appointment at Parkside, Rexroth held conducting posts at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Central College in Iowa, and The College of William and Mary in Virginia. Her university bands have been selected to perform at several College Band Directors National Association and National Association for Music Education conferences. She has also led high school band programs in Massachusetts, Illinois, and Minnesota. Rexroth has guest conducted district, regional, and all-state bands in several states, as well as the Valley Festival Brass, the U.S. Army Field Band, the United States Military Academy Band, the Colorado Intercollegiate Band, the U.S. Army Band, the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command Band, the Tactical Air Command Band, the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music Symphonic Band, the National Band Association-Wisconsin Chapter Intercollegiate Honor Band, the Virginia Symphony, and the St. Olaf Band. She is also on the conducting faculty of the Hooked On Bands/New Horizons Band Camp in Door County, WI. Rexroth did her studies in music education and conducting at St. Olaf College, Northwestern University, Indiana University, the Aspen Music School in Colorado, and the International Conductors Workshop in Zlin, Czech Republic. Her conducting teachers include Miles Johnson, Steven Amundson, John Paynter, Ray Cramer, David Effron, and Paul Vermel. An advocate for new music, Rexroth has commissioned and conducted works from numerous composers, most recently Tim Mahr, Ryan George, James Crowley, Daron Hagen and Anthony O’Toole. She has taught conducting workshops in Missouri, New Hampshire, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Massachusetts. Rexroth enjoys collaborating with colleagues and guest artists, including Gaudette Brass, Ed Shaughnessy, JoAnn Falletta, Paul Vermel, Steven Bryant, David Bayles, Russ Johnson, Ami Bouterse, and Jana Batty. In addition to regular concerts, Rexroth’s bands have performed for numerous special occasions and guests, including Jane Goodall, Warren Burger, Lady Margaret Thatcher, and HRH Prince Charles.

Rachael Swartz


Rachael is a Milwaukee/Chicago based actor, director, vocal coach and educator. She teaches Musical Theatre, Acting for the Camera, Voice, Movement, and Text Analysis at UW-Parkside and serves on the acclaimed Acting/Musical Theatre Faculty at Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan.

Proud union member of both Actors' Equity and Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. Regional performance credits include: The 39 Steps (Annabella/Pamela/Margaret), The Sound of Music (Mother Abbess), and Romeo and Juliet (Nurse). Recent on-camera credits include work with the Travel Channel, ID, Oxygen and TV One.

She previously served as Education Director at Maples Repertory Theatre and The Clinton Area Showboat Theatre, Education Associate at Greenbrier Valley Theatre, and Director of Theatre Arts Camps at The Lost Colony.

She is a member of the Musical Theatre Educators’ Alliance, Voice and Speech Trainers Association, and Dueling Arts International. Through the Lessac Training and Research Institute, she has achieved Lessac Practitioner standing and has been accepted to their Certified Trainer program. She has served as a voice, dialect, and text coach for productions in the U.S. and Philippines.

Stupid F##king Bird

Learn about Music and Theatre Arts at Parkside.

Picture: Livestream performance of Stupid F##king Bird, Fall 2020


Edson Melendez  |  262-595-2188  |

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