SAKACHEZ® Mission Statement
Lifting theater artists of color, highlighting AAPI and Latine stories, empowering the next generation of BIPOC musical theater artists with transformative training and mentorship.
Sakachez® born from Lainie Sakakura and Alex Sanchez looking back at 30 years as successful theater professionals and unpacking how the lack of representation affected them emotionally and professionally. To this date Sakakura has never worked for an AAPI director, choreographer, music director, producer, or general manager in her professional career (1988 - 2023).
Every artist needs mentorship. Learning from those that came before us will help light our path forward.
Mission (part 2 ) Lifting theater artists of color by creating, supporting and producing musicals highlighting AAPI and Latine stories because we first start close to home.
Lainie Sakakura is a Japanese American daughter of an immigrant mother and a Japanese American Internment Camp survivor. Alex Sanchez is a Puerto Rican Spanish speaker, son of factory workers.
Sakakura & Sanchez both transitioned from concert dance to Broadway to director-choreographers and have 30 years teaching experience. Additionally, Sakakura wrote the book for a new musical based on Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford @COBASmusical and produced 43 various multicultural events, cabarets, readings, and showcases.
Sakakura & Sanchez are Joe A. Callaway Award & Joseph Jefferson Award recipients and parents of two beautiful Japarican daughters that are also performing artists.
Sakachez® officially published in TMOG and signed by the US Patent & Trademark Office Mar 1, 2022
started when Lainie Sakakura saw 6 beautiful and talented AAPI teens auditioning for a new Broadway show. In her 30 year performing career, she never saw that many Asian Americans in the same audition unless it was for an Asian specific call. Her heart broke when she saw all 6 AAPI performers cut. None of them were asked to stay and sing. She immediately brainstormed with her husband, Alex Sanchez and started a young performers mentoring, support and training ground called, SAKACHEZ®. The name is a combination of Sakakura and Sanchez representing AAPI, Latinx, Black American cultures. Their group is all inclusive with a focus on the AAPI performing artists community because they are the only ethnic group not rising in numbers on Broadway. Current Asian Americans on Broadway: Performers 6.7%, Playwrights 0%, Directors 0%
Our middle and high school kids have more demands, bigger ambitions and very little time. We know how much ballet technique helps our success in musical theater, but many cannot commit to the demands of a full time ballet school. What are the technical dance priorities that a musical theater performer needs to focus on? What is the most economical way to strengthen their dance skills swiftly and effectively? There are no short cuts, but we trimmed the fat and created a class series to work seriously without a year long commitment.
Sakachez® Sunday class series is geared specifically for professional musical theater performers that need to work on technique. Professional kids are smart and focused, but tend to have holes in their dance technique due to work schedules. We want to prevent technical problems and injuries that can come up quickly as they transition to adult performers. Running around, trying to learn an audition combination can only go so far. Ultimately it's real technique that gives a performer longevity in their career.
Sakachez® Article by Lia Chang 2020
We create opportunities for students to socialize, join us for lunch, ask questions, and receive advice about their careers and concerns. Bonding with their community can be the greatest gift when pushing through challenging times.
As mentors and teaching artists, Lainie Sakakura and Alex Sanchez offer students not only the experience of performing in multiple Broadway shows, but also 25+ years teaching experience, work as director/choreographers, and as parents. Teen years are challenging, having to juggling many new responsibilities, pressures, and changes. Their self confidence are always tested. They need a constant balance of being pushed and reassured. Working with students for so many years has shown us over and over that teaching the whole child takes time and patience. We strive to help our students connect more deeply with their craft and their peers and community.
Sakachez® is fiscally sponsored by New York Live Arts, Inc. Please visit our support page to make a tax-deductible contribution today.
Please contact asap if interested. Studio space requirements
depends on number of students attending. Limited space.