As part of YAA's Alumni Check-In Series, we ask Ari Goldbloom-Helzner ('16) how he's doing in his Freshman year at college. Oh, and check out this great Bethesda Magazine article he was featured in back in June.

Current School: Brown University

What have you been up to recently?:  I'm a freshman at Brown University and am currently taking courses in Math, Music Theory, Voice and Playwriting. My passion lies with Math and Music, though I’ve been particularly inspired by my Playwriting course this semester. I’ve written a number of short plays and am in the process of writing my first musical, which I hope to eventually produce at Brown. I also applied for and was selected to join the board of Musical Forum, Brown University’s student-run musical theatre company.

Tell us about something you learned at YAA and applied to your life today.:  I've learned so much from my years at YAA and am extremely grateful for the mentorship of all the guest artists and teachers, particularly Rolando. I use the vocal techniques I've learned from him every time I study a new song, audition for a part, or perform in a show. He taught me how to analyze the details in a song and learn music quickly for an audition. He also gave me the confidence to sing in new styles and try new things with my voice that I hadn’t tried before. This past Fall, I auditioned for and was cast in my first show at college -- I played the role of Mike in A Chorus Line in November.  

Anything else you want to say?: My experiences at YAA were fundamental in helping inform the choices I make now – in my voice studies, in my compositions, and even in my playwriting. When I participate in a master class, an audition, or a juried recital here at college, I can’t help but draw from what I’ve learned from Rolando, Kris, and other YAA mentors with whom I’ve had the honor to work. 

Thanks for your awesome update, Ari! If you're an alum, you could be highlighted in this series as well. Send us your update at this form.