Join Us at The Barrymore on Mother’s Day 5/10/15 at 3PM!

Tickets on sale now! 

LTYM Madison: 2015 Auditions and CAST ANNOUNCEMENT

by takeylabenton on February 25, 2015



Century House Audition Selfie

Century House Audition Selfie: Cate, Ann, Takeyla, Darcy, Kasey

LTYM Madison 

Auditions and Cast Announcement


The audition process itself is seemingly very straight-forward. You come in, bare your soul for about 5 minutes, and then wait for decisions to be made. It was like American Idol, only there wasn’t any singing and the ticket to Hollywood is a “CONGRATULATIONS and welcome to the LTYM: Madison community” email. As a “judge” I was riding along on an emotional rollercoaster that kept changing speeds with each performer. It was exciting, nerve-wrecking and seriously soul-satisfying all at the same time. When the ride was over I felt as if I learned a lot about life in only a few hours. It was wonderful to share the auditioning and casting experience for the first time with our intern Kasey, and just as fun to write this post together. We all are ecstatic to announce the cast of our 2015 show!


Takeyla: What was your favorite part it all?

Kasey: I think my favorite part of it all was the wide variety of stories. It showed how different everyone’s life is and how many experiences that people have gone through. Sometimes I’m so caught up in what I’m doing, that I forget to stop and look at the people around me. The audition process was a great way for me to slow down and truly appreciate everybody and their stories.

Century House logo

Century House chair


Kasey: Did you prepare for the audition process in anyway?

Takeyla: The main prep for me was coordinating the auditions. There was so much promoting that went on (thanks to Ann and Darcy) even before the auditions were announced that the email requests just seemed to flow in. Thanks to Happy Bambino, we had a warm, inviting space for our Sunday auditions. This year we added a weekday evening audition and The Century House provided the beautiful space. 2014 alum Cate Guggino volunteered for us as a greater, welcoming all our auditioners. As the auditions went on, I began to already envision how could come together.

Happy Bambino sign


Emily Keown and her twins at Happy Bambino

Emily Keown and her twins at Happy Bambino


Takeyla: What sort of inspiration or insight did you gain from the auditions?

Kasey: The greatest insight I got from the auditions process was that putting your stories out in the world can be a very self empowering decision. Even though most people seemed pretty wracked with nerves, they found the strength to continue and I really admire their strength. I have never seen so many strong, insightful, and creative women in a room as a have for the LTYM audition process. I felt truly honored as they were willing to share their personal experiences with us and I felt humbled by their candor. Each story was enticing in it’s own ways and it’s a shame that we couldn’t make room for everyone in the final cast.


Kasey: How difficult was it making casting decisions for you?

Takeyla: It was difficult trying to figure out how to approach it. From the standpoint of a writer and editor, or stage producer?  It ended up being a combination of each. All the stories were unique and heartwarming and it was difficult not to give all the folks who auditioned a hug. It takes bravery to tell your story and I find inspiration in that. There is value in every experience and story that is told. It took time and careful crafting to consider how the stories could come together. We’re all really excited to announce this years show lineup.

Audition table

Thanks to Happy Bambino in Monona for being so welcoming and accommodating. We’d also like to thank The Century House in Middleton for providing the beautifully inviting space for our evening audition. Huge and heartfelt thanks to everyone who generously shared their stories with us. Selecting from such entertaining, moving, and talented storytellers proves a wrenching process we must weather every season.

And now, we are so excited to announce our 2015 Madison cast!! Congratulations to all, thank you to everyone who auditioned and shared your stories. Please join us at The Barrymore Theatre on Mother’s Day!!

Amanda Struckmeyer

Laurel Bastian

Sujhey Beisser

Ann Garvin

Melissa Falcon Field

Beverly Davis

De’Kendrea Stamps

Michelle Wildgen

Eileen Cecile

Danielle Goldsmith

Founder and National Director Ann Imig will emcee and read and Associate Producer Takeyla Benton will read a poem as well.

Tickets on sale now!

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Brava Magazine is Madison’s premiere women’s magazine, and so much more. Brava also catalyzes  amazing educational, networking, and social opportunities in the Madison area with community leaders and nationally renown authors, scholars and speakers. LTYM: Madison and Brava Magazine have enjoyed several successful collaborations over the years (most recently with a mini LTYM show at the Madison Women’s Expo) and we are thrilled to welcome Brava back as our local media sponsor for 2015–with a valuable offer for YOU.

Win a FREE TICKET to Brava Magazine’s Thrive Career Workshop with Madison’s favorite life coach and inspiring motivational speaker Darcy Luoma!!


Myth of Multitasking | March 4, 2015

Do you check email while on a conference call? Do you pride yourself on your ability to juggle two things simultaneously? Many do, but research shows it is not effective. In fact, multitasking is inefficient and actually reduces your productivity. On the opposite end of the scale is mindfulness—being fully present in the moment focusing only on the task at hand. Learn the value, importance and benefits of mindfully single tasking when it comes to creativity, memory, attention, productivity and influence.

I attended Thrive’s 2014 four-part leadership workshop with Darcy, and found in it indispensable tools for boosting my confidence and efficacy as the leader of my own organization and–as Darcy is famous for saying–as the leader of my life. We all are leaders of our own lives, and Darcy provides resources and tools in Thrive workshops to help us lead those lives with integrity, ingenuity and with the maximum capacity for enjoyment and fulfillment. Even if you don’t consider yourself a career woman, your life is your career and Darcy will entertain, energize, and educate you; she will transform the way you think and live…

Read more about Darcy Luoma in this 2013 Brava Magazine feature, then comment below for a chance to win a free pass to Brava’s Thrive Career workshop on March 4th.  Comment by Thursday 11:59 pm CST, and a winner will be chosen at random and announced here on the LTYM Madison website this Friday 2/27.

Thank you Brava Magazine for your continued support of LTYM: Madison!!

Get your tickets to Thrive Career Workshop with Darcy Luoma here!



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LTYM: Madison Welcomes Back Madison Youth Choir to perform at our show!

February 10, 2015

At MYC we talk about helping kids to become “expert noticers”. We want our singers to be open-minded, curious, thoughtful people. We use choral music as our way “in”; we know that what kids get at MYC in terms of thinking about their world, experiencing the power of music to change lives–those are the memories and skills that will guide them throughout life.                                                                     — Michael Ross, Madison Youth Choir Executive Director Remember, at our 2011 Madison LTYM show, when Madison Youth Choir’s Cantabile singers made us all sob with their stunning rendition of Lilly Allen’s Chinese? Listening to these talented High School seniors lend their breathtaking harmonies to our Mother’s Day audience–many of their own mothers seated amongst our patrons–proved an unforgettable homage to the voices of motherhood. The video can’t capture the fullness of emotion or sound, but it gives you a pretty good idea: Click here to skip ahead to […]

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Announcing our 2015 cause: Simpson Street Free Press

January 27, 2015

Each year, all our LTYM cities choose a local non-profit cause to whom we’ll donate 10% of the ticket proceeds, and fund-raise for on show day. For our 6th annual Madison show, we are excited to announce we have chosen the Simpson Street Free Press.   Simpson Street Free Press is built on ideas and innovation with education, specifically literacy, at its core. Its non-profit model allows room for the students from various backgrounds and those many others consider “at risk” to take initiative to grow into leaders and use the skills they learn in ways that go beyond what they learn as writers and reporters. They have a multi-mission approach: Mission #1- Provide a challenging academic experience for the teen writing staff. Intense academic lesson plans are the backbone of all the SSFP programs. The lesson plans are carried out in an authentic newsroom atmosphere. The student writers learn to research, plan, […]

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Welcome LTYM: Madison 2015 Intern Kasey Margelofsky!!

January 22, 2015

Every year I spend a morning at the university, meeting students interested in becoming an LTYM intern who will work closely with me for a season (both as a part of the Madison production team and assisting me in my role as National Director). This year, Darcy and I met an exceptional group of candidates. The young adults we interviewed prioritized women’s issues and social issues in their lives and work, possessed impressive creative talents, and many of them already had a full resume of accolades and accomplishments. It sounds like an overstatement, but spending time with these students made us feel optimistic about the future leadership of our country–especially leadership by strong, smart, creative women. Add to those qualities a fellow theater-geek, writer, and student (now graduate) activist, and well, we feel like we pretty much won the intern lottery. Meet Kasey Margelofsky:   A recent graduate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, […]

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