ART BEAT: Lionheart Theatre to offer summer camps for all ages


Special Photo Lionheart Theater is accepting children for its June summer camps that include acting, singing and improv.

Aspiring thespians of all ages can hone their skills at creative summer camps presented for two weeks by Lionheart Theatre. Singing, dancing, acting, improv and comedy will be featured in four separate opportunities, as well as a talent show on June 21.

The camps start on June 10 through 14 when campers will sing, dance and act with a "Lion King" theme. Then, from June 17 through 21, "Mary Poppins" is the theme. The Young Stars Camp for ages 4-7 is 10 a.m. to noon, which costs $75 per camper. The Spotlight Camp for ages 7-12 is from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. and costs $150 per camper and $100 for siblings.

Also from June 10 through 14 from 4 to 5 p.m, the Improv Workshop for ages 10 through adult costs $20. Students learn the basics of improv, culminating with a performance on June 15 as the opening act for the professional OTC Improv Troupe performing at Lionheart Theatre. OTC member Mike Yow will teach the class.

June 17-21 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. is the Advanced Musical Theater Class for ages 10 through adult with some acting or stage experience. The cost is $25 per person. This class learns to sing and dance to one classic Broadway musical number and performs it at Lionheart's Summer Talent Show.

The Talent Show is one of the highlights of Lionheart's year.

"Toddlers through seniors come onstage and perform skits, improv and songs for an enthusiastic audience," Sean Casey of Lionheart said.

There are many other highlights of the summer camps.

"One camp highlight is 'The Incredible Joke Machine.' All week campers practice delivering a joke," Casey said. "During the show time for parents, each camper comes onstage, introduces themselves and tells their joke. It's particularly fun because the audience eagerly participates, especially with 'who's there?' in knock-knock jokes and then laughs uproariously, even if the joke doesn't make sense."

During the "Lion King" camp, youngsters will act like animals, make their own masks, and perform skits and songs such as "I Just Can't Wait to be King." In the "Mary Poppins" Camp, children will take a "Spoonful of Sugar," learn "Doh Re Me" and even fly a kite.

Lionheart's camps have been met with much parental enthusiasm.

"This will be my children's third summer attending Lionheart's summer drama camps," said Jessica Sapough, mother of two campers. "The experience of being 'onstage' has been great for both of them. It has really helped Henry be unafraid of being in front of an audience and helped with giving presentations at school."

MaryBeth Reeves' children, four girls named Gwendolyn, Hannah, Isabella and Emily, have come for several years and learned much about performing.

"It has made such a difference in their confidence in front of crowds," she said. "They cannot wait until the next time they come to camp."

To register for the camp and talent show, email Casey at casey196@bellsouth.net or visit www.lionheart.org.

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