ART BEAT: Lionheart offers drama courses for all ages

Holley Calmes

Holley Calmes

Lionheart Theatre is offering a number of exciting opportunities for aspiring actors of all ages to "get in touch with the inner thespian."

A special six-week course for kids ages 7 to 12 will begin Saturday, and a six-week course for ages 12 and up begins Wednesday. Lionheart has also announced a summer camp for children to be held during June.

The Play's the Thing is the name of the course for the younger set, which begins Saturday, and it is not too late to register. Children are introduced to the theater and acting from 10 a.m. until noon on six consecutive Saturdays. Youngsters will learn how to create characters, use the voice, body, face and mannerisms, vocal technique, how to read and script, how to rehearse and even a bit of theater history. There will be a student showcase for family and friends to top it all off.

Acting for film, TV and commercials is the course for anyone age 12 through adults. This five-week course will meet from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday nights from Wednesday through May 26. Students will be taught on-camera techniques, acting for film, working with products, cue-card commercials, multi-camera and news anchor techniques, and develop a step-by-step plan to start working in commercials, movies and TV.

The cost for The Play's the Thing is $125; the cost for Acting for film, TV and commercials is $150.

Teaching these classes will be actor Paul Boehlert who has appeared in hundreds of plays, movies and television shows. He is also a two-time Emmy Award nominee, and he has won 28 major national awards. He not only acts, he is also an experienced director, writer and production editor.

Two camps for children ages 5 through 13 will be held in June, and it isn't too early to make a reservation. The first camp will be held from 9 a.m. until noon June 14 through 18. This camp will have campers surrounded by royalty as they build a castle and dress up to become princesses, knights and funny court jesters.

Theatre Fantasy Camp will be held June 21 through 25, also from 9 a.m. until noon. During this camp, young actors will decide who they want to portray.

"This is perfect for little girls who belt out 'Tomorrow' from 'Annie' in the mirror," said instructor Sean Casey. "They can put on a red wig and sing on stage."

Young actors can also choose to take on characters from "High School Musical," "Wicked," "Les Miserables," "Mary Poppins" and even TV characters.

There is an early bird discount for campers who sign up before June 1. The price for enrolling by this date is $100 for each camp. After June 1, the cost is $125. Additional siblings are only $75.

In addition to Sean "That Funny Guy" Casey and a team of caring teen interns, a camp "mom" will be on hand to ensure that the littlest campers get the most out of the experience.

"While we teach theater basics, we help our campers feed their creative souls," Casey said.

For more information and to register for any of the classes and camps, call 678-938-8518 or visit the Lionheart Web site at www.lionhearttheatre.org.

Holley Calmes is a freelance writer and public relations consultant specializing in the arts. E-mail her at hcalmes@mindspring.com.