BY JOE MARVILLI
This summer, young thespians will get the chance to create and work on a musical at Queens Theatre.
“Show Stoppers,” the first annual summer musical program at Flushing Meadow Corona Park’s performing arts venue, will take place this July and August, giving students the chance to work on a musical from beginning to end. The children will work with theater professionals that have backgrounds in both performance and youth performing arts education.
The idea for a summer theater course came from Education Director Richard Hinojosa, who joined Queens Theatre in a full-time capacity in the winter of 2012. This type of program was one of the main ideas he wanted to pursue.
“One of the first things I wanted to do was to get our summer camp started. It was a no-brainer getting a theater summer camp here,” he said.
The camp is open to all kids between the ages of 7 and 14, with no prior theater experience necessary. At the beginning of the session, students are given a theme to write the play’s script. The theater director and choreographer will help the students along with the plot’s gestation, characters and a dance. The musical director will work with the kids to write a short, original song, as well as teaching them a kid-friendly song from Broadway or a movie musical.
“The program is really about the journey, about the kids developing something original, something they have full ownership of,” Hinojosa said.
The program lasts for two weeks, with two sessions happening over the summer. The first session runs from July 21 to Aug. 1, with a performance starting at 3 p.m. on the last day. The second session starts on Aug. 4 and ends with a performance at 3 p.m. on Aug. 15.
The theme for the first session is animals, accompanied by a trip to the Queens Zoo, and the second session’s topic is art, with a trek down the block to the Queens Museum.
The cost of one session is $400 per week per child. Those who opt for both sessions will pay $350 per week per child, for a total of $1,400. Acceptance into the program is on a first-come, first-served basis, with auditions for roles taking place once the session has begun.
“I hope they walk away learning a little bit about performance and how we create a show,” Hinojosa said. “Mostly, I hope they walk away with a new confidence in themselves. I hope they walk away with team-building skills.”
To register, visit www.queenstheatre.org/showstoppers, print out the forms and mail them to the Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Avenue South, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens NY 11368. The registration deadline is June 20.
Reach Joe Marvilli at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 125, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @Joey788.