A kids acting summer camp can encourage kids to embrace their love of the dramatic arts.
Choosing a Camp
What should you look for in a kids acting summer camp?
- Day camp or overnight-Before you make this decision, consider the age of your child. Although there may be overnight acting camps for children as young as six years old, your child may not be emotionally mature enough to handle an overnight camp for several days. Also, keep in mind that overnight camps can be quite a bit more expensive than day camps.
- Features-What are you looking for in a kids acting summer camp? Do you just want your child to have an overall dramatic camp experience, or do you want a camp that will help your child improve specific skills, like dramatic readings, speech and elocution, confidence, etc.?
- Expense-What kind of camp fits your budget? Acting camps that are geared towards individualized and intensive instruction may be much more expensive than camps that teach in group settings. However, if your child is pursuing an acting career or working towards earning an acting scholarship, the investment of an individualized instructional camp may be well worth the added expense.
Kids Acting Summer Camp Offerings
Many kids' summer camps offer some or all of the following:
- Acting techniques-Instruction for acting techniques will vary depending upon the age of the camp participants. Younger children may practice role playing and play a variety of acting games. Older children will work on developing good acting "habits" along with a variety of acting "tricks" in addition to basic acting techniques.
- Improvisation and Memorization-Campers may participate in several improvisation and memorization activities. Kids will work on memorizing lines from a variety of scripts, and they'll also be encouraged to work on their improvisational skills particularly when they can't remember some of their lines.
- Speech and elocution-Kids will never be successful at acting if they don't learn how to speak correctly. Many acting camps focus on teaching basic vocal skills. In the same respect, budding actors and actresses need to be good readers and be able to take an unfamiliar script and read it with proper elocution. Acting instructors often encourage kids to practice their speech and elocution through several "cold readings."
- Audition preparation-A good acting camp will prepare kids for auditions. This preparation will build their confidence in their own abilities and talents and enable them to face a variety of situations as they endeavor to succeed in the acting world. On-camera and live audience auditions should be held for campers throughout the week.
Summer Acting Camps
The following is a list of summer acting camps that are available in the United States. These are only a few of the many camps available, so continue to search on your own, beginning in your area:
- American Stage Summer Camp-Held each summer at the St. Petersburg College Downtown campus in St. Petersburg, Florida, the camp is for kids ages five to 17 years old. These are daily camps that run one week each and feature a variety of activities.
- New York Film Academy Summer Film and Acting Camps-Available in New York and Universal Studios in Hollywood, California, these summer day camps engage kids ages 10 to 13 in a variety of camp offerings, including weekend and two-week sessions.
- Young Actor's Studio Summer Camps-Held in Los Angeles, California, the program offers a two-week and four-week day camp for seven through 17 year old participants. The camp focuses on a variety of acting techniques, including a public presentation at the end of the camp for family and friends.
- Rocky Mountain Theater for Kids-Located in Boulder and Denver, Colorado, these performing arts camps are suitable for kids ages three to 16. Their extensive performing arts curriculum offers instruction in acting, voice, dance, makeup, stage combating, and more.
Choosing a summer acting camp for your child is a very personal decision. If possible, visit the camp headquarters and talk with other parents whose children have already participated before you enroll your child. A good summer acting camp can help build your child's confidence and hone his or her acting skills, paving the way for a bright future in the world of dramatic arts.