Cape Gazette
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Milton Theatre reinvents summer camp

Program kicks off June 24 for youngest troupers
May 13, 2013
Kate Sumstine, left, and Summer Barnett become the Fairy Godmothers for “Cinderella” at Prince & Princess Story Camp at the Milton Theatre in 2010.

The Milton Theatre Corporation is re-creating summer camp throughout Milton this 2013 summer season, and extending outreach sessions in Lewes.

Although the theater building is not available, the Milton Theatre Corporation is holding classes at four different locations. Three camp centers are in Milton: H.O. Brittingham Elementary School, The EDGE Martial Arts Academy on Mulberry Street and St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church on Federal Street. The Lewes location will be Conley’s United Methodist Church off John J. Williams Highway.

The program begins June 24 with Prince and Princess Camp, developed for 4-8-year-olds. Created by senior staff member Jan Layden, the week is designed to ignite the students’ imaginations through the cherished fairy tales, ballets and childhood stories they know and love. "It combines musical theater and art,” said Layden.

Inspired by classical, contemporary, Disney, and Rodgers and Hammerstein music, students sing, dance and dramatize familiar stories. With arts and crafts projects, they create their own props, crowns, tiaras, wands and swords for the stories.

New this year for the 5-10-year-olds are afternoon programs: Annie Sing and Dance-Along and a Cinderella Mini Play. In the Annie Camp, everyone becomes little Annie, Mrs. Hannigan, Grace, Lilly, Daddy Warbucks, Rooster, the Orphans and even the Maids and Butlers!

For the Cinderella Mini Play Camp, the children will experience a pint-sized version of this cherished classic. Using simple lines, fun songs and silly dances, the children will take on the roles of all their favorite characters.

During the week of July 8, Teen Acting and scene study will be taught by Ellen Passman in the morning session. New this year is teacher Chrissy Moore, who will offer an afternoon Teen Theatre Institute. Students will actively develop their ensemble acting techniques, improvisational, writing and singing skills, and enhance their stage presence in Musical Theatre. An added bonus day with Martha Pfeiffer, (director of the Drama Academy program at Cape Henlopen High School) will offer a Day of Shakespeare.

The Broadway Musical Theatre program, for ages 8-14, returns the week of July 15. This popular session gives students the opportunity to perform solos, duets and trios in addition to many group numbers from dozens of Broadway favorites new and old.

The Milton Theater program is known for creating classes where the students are encouraged to build confidence in through performance, to ignite their imaginations through theater games and to enjoy the creative process by working together in a show. "Talent does not define the experience; participation creates the experience," says Ellen Passman, teacher and camp director.

The week of July 22, Michael Chamberland, owner of The EDGE Martial Academy, will present Stage Craft, Fencing and Stage Combat Illusion (for ages 10-16) in his home base. Students will experience historical swordsmanship, understanding and performing the dynamics of stage fighting and how to tell a story through fight.

David Warick, creator and director of Delaware Comedy Theater and current department head of the theater program at Sussex Central High School, will present the afternoon program that week, Improvisation & Comedy Fun for ages 10-16.

The five-week program concludes the week of July 29 when students fuse their newly acquired skills in a Performance Camp with a production of “Disney’s 101 Dalmatians.” Audition techniques will help the students land roles in the play. Students will work with their own libretto script and learn blocking techniques, and ensemble, small group and solo songs and dances.

Every camp culminates with a Free Fun Friday Friends and Family Performance.

For more information and enrollment, call the Milton Theatre office at 302-684-3400 or email MDC110@Verizon.net. Information, the brochure and a registration form can be downloaded from miltontheatre.org.

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