Rising Stars is a Musical Theater Program for Students sponsored by Medina Centre for Dance Art.

This program offers kids ages 9-18 the opportunity to learn new skills, grow as a performer, and present amazing shows in Medina County. As a triple-threat ensemble, students will learn acting, singing, and dance, all while producing Broadway’s best hits.

Our philosophy is to create a world where everyone can access the magic of theater through, music acting, and dance.

We have witnessed firsthand how the performing arts can build character, confidence, and friendships.  This magic of Musical Theater is an incredible tool to teach awareness, confidence, self-discipline, and teamwork.  We strive to empower confident, focused, and happy performers.

MCDA and the Rising Star Staff teach healthy living, leadership, respect, and kindness to our students.

Kelly Parks

Rising Star Director

Kelly is the Owner/Director of MCDA and the Rising Stars Program. She has been training dancers and performers for over 35 years. Miss Kelly has a B.A in Dance Management from Baldwin Wallace University and a Masters in Art Administration from Akron University. Kelly and is a member of the National Dance Association, the International Dance Entrepreneurs Association, and the National Dance Education Organization.

Kelly has worked in community and regional theater for 20 years. She as choreographed, A Mid-Summer Nights Dream, Brigadoon, Big River, Children of Eden, Alice in Wonderland, Guys and Dolls, Magic Toy Shoppe and many more.

​She serves the community through involvement with Leadership Medina County and by serving on the board of directors for Main Street Medina and the Medina Arts Council. ​Miss Kelly is also the Dance Moderator for Padua Franciscan High School and an Adjunct Professor at Baldwin Wallace University.

Kelly and her husband Scott of 32 years have 3 adult daughters, and they are all active in dance and theatre arts. ​

“I truly believe it is a privilege to share performing arts education with each of my students. I love watching them grow, achieve their goals, and succeed in school, community, and the Performing ARTS!”

Connie Laettner

Rising Star Assistant Director

Connie Laettner is the Assistant Director of Rising Stars at Medina Centre for Dance Art. Originally from Western New York, Connie attended the Buffalo Academy for the Visual and Performing Arts for dance and voice, and continued on to earn her B.A. in Dance in 2003 from Baldwin-Wallace University.

Connie began her performance career early, debuting at the age of 10 in “Jesus Christ Superstar”. And from that point on musical theater has been a constant in her life, performing across New York state, as well as choreographing and teaching musical workshops for local schools and theatres both in New York and in Ohio. She attended the New York State Summer School of the Arts two years in a row for Choral Studies and was a member of Baldwin-Wallace’s choir.

Connie is currently a local choreographer for area schools, recently completing “Beauty & the Beast Jr.” at Claggett Middle School and “High School Musical Jr.” at Brunswick Middle School, as well as choreographing for other area theaters. She is also an actor in professional community theaters, performing in shows such as “SpongeBob Squarepants the Musical”, “Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”, “Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang”, “Big Fish”, “Beauty & the Beast”, and many more!

When she is not teaching dance, choreographing, performing, or dreaming about her next big project, Connie is happily living life in Brunswick with her husband and their five kids where she enjoys cooking, reading, and naps!

Photos From Last Season’s Production of Newsies Jr!