(Editor’s Note: This is the ninth in a series of stories about College of Communications students completing summer internships.)
He’s a Pennsylvania native, but one Penn State student has found his home on Broadway.
Andrew Greenberg, a senior advertising major, is a marketing intern for Rodgers & Hammerstein in New York City. The musical theater company consistently works to secure rights to existing shows, in order to facilitate productions all over the world, and to distribute rights for its current portfolio of shows.
In the organization’s comparatively small corporate headquarters, with a few dozen employees, Greenberg gets a variety of experiences as the lone summer intern.
“It’s kind of a jack-of-all-trades position,” Greenberg said. That means everything from providing some graphic design expertise, writing news articles and contributing to weekly newsletters. “It’s going really well.”
Greenberg found out about the position through an online search of the Playbill.com internship board. He started the position in early June and will work through the end of July.
Last summer, he completed a programming Internship at the cabaret club Feinstein’s/54 Below in New York City, but the nontraditional hours in that role prevented the Doylestown, Pennsylvania, native from exploring much in New York City.
The opportunity was important, though, because Jennifer Ashley Tepper at Feinstein’s/54 Below was the one who brought Greenberg to the city for that job. She subsequently provided a strong recommendation of Greenberg for his internship with for Rodgers & Hammerstein. “I wouldn’t be in New York without her taking a chance on me,” he said.
This summer, he’s busy with that internship and he has a more typical 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule, which allows him plenty of time to explore the city.
“Really, it’s like it’s my first summer in town,” he said.
He enjoys every minute of it, especially the internship itself.
“We’re in the middle of pitching to obtain the rights to some current Broadway shows, and I’ve been in involved in a couple of those,” he said. “I sit over in the theatrical licensing department so they’re in contact with a lot of high schools and amateur theater groups who are trying to get rights to shows six months or a year in advance.”
Greenberg compares the position to working for an agency. “It’s just that I only have one client, and it’s their catalog that we license around the world,” he said.
He considers graphic design and social media skills his strongest, and said he has been honing his other skills every day thanks to the opportunities provided during the internship.
In the fall, he’ll be the marketing chair for the Student Programming Association on campus. He’s helped build the framework for a strong schedule of shows during the next academic year on the University Park campus. “I really got involved with SPA this past year,” he said. “We already have upwards of 10 shows booked for the fall and it’s only the middle of July, so we have time to add a lot more.”
Only one thing seems to exceed his enthusiasm for SPA, and that’s his enjoyment of all things Broadway -- making the internship a perfect fit.
“I saw my first Broadway show when I was 13 and I've been ravenous ever since,” he said.
He helped create the inaugural BroadwayCon this past January in New York City. The event six months ago drew thousands of people and plans for the second spectacle, scheduled Jan. 27-29, 2017, at the historic Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, are well underway. Greenberg is a programming coordinator, assisting with the creation of panels, performances and the museum of Broadway memorabilia.
“It’s the only Broadway fan convention, and it’s just exciting,” he said. “With the success of ‘Hamilton’ it’s put an international spotlight on what’s happening on Broadway -- it’s amazing one show has done that -- and it’s a great time to be here.”
He also thinks it’s a great time to stay. So, while he’ll be back at Penn State for classes in the fall, Greenberg believes the bright lights of Broadway will be a big part of his future.