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ART BEAT: Actor's Edge provides fun-filled summer camps

Special Photo. Students attending The Actor's Edge Summer camps can choose from many theatrical disciplines to study and enjoy from June 6 through July 29.

Special Photo. Students attending The Actor's Edge Summer camps can choose from many theatrical disciplines to study and enjoy from June 6 through July 29.

Summer camps at The Actor's Edge in Duluth will offer youngsters ages 4-17 the promise of honing their theatrical skills as they have lots of fun in the process. The camps will be held over seven weeks from June 6 to July 29, and campers can sign up for one week or all seven.

Located in the Notre Dame Academy at 4635 River Green Parkway, TAE has six different camps this summer, but all of the camps are built around the idea of "the audition," which has become TAE's successful and unique approach to teaching.

Spokesperson Pat Padrick, founder and Artistic Director of TAE, said, "What professionals know is that no matter how many acting classes a child attends, they still need to negotiate the demands of their audition, and leave a lasting, positive impression with the director. By focusing on performance skills, audition technique and improvisation -- and delivering it all in a fun and supportive atmosphere, children make new friends, grow in confidence and ability, and look forward to returning year after year."

Campers can choose from camps centered on acting, improv, musical theatre, junior musical theatre for ages 4-6, costume design and teen triple threat camp. The camps are all new each week. There is no repetitiveness to the content. Camps are $200 per child per week and are held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. An exciting on-stage performance is presented at the end of each week to the delight of family and friends.

There are incentives: Newcomers can try the camp out for 50 percent off of one week. There are family discounts for two or more siblings enrolled in the same week.

The staff has also been hand-picked.

"All of our counselors have a huge passion for the performing arts," Padrick said. "We have a blend of industry professionals along with college-age performing artists who share their individual areas of expertise. Together, a very special and creative atmosphere envelops us all."

TAE's newest camp offering is Teen Triple Threat. Each Friday, teens in this camp are faced with a mock-Broadway audition for which the teen will perform a monologue, a solo and a choreographed musical theatre dance routine.

"This is the perfect camp for teens who love to perform in musicals and desire to take their performance skills to the next level. A different dance style, solo song and monologue is offered each week, so no matter if a teen signs up for one week or all seven, they'll be challenged to grow and develop their craft all summer long," Padrick said.

TAE has been offering theatrical instruction since their launch in 2008. They are a Georgia 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.

"The Actor's Edge is the perfect place to hone your theatrical skills if your desire is to get an agent and start working commercially, if you already have a talent agent and need further training to be audition-ready, if you want to get the lead in your next school play, or if you just want to have fun and gain confidence while exploring the world of performing arts," Padrick said.

TAE has showcased their students over the past few years in such productions as "The Stories of Sheherazade" this past March.

For more information about these camps or about TAE, call 770-846-6721 or visit the website at www.TheActorsEdge.com.

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