Acting out: Drama camp teaches basics of acting

Local youth can take advantage to learn about acting and to practice what they have learned at a local drama camp.

The Riverside Art Center is hosting its second-ever Drama Camp at St. Paul United Church of Christ, in Wapakoneta, this week.

“In a weeks time, they get the basics,” Riverside Art Center Vice President Maggie Bowsher said. “They all kind of amaze me.”

The students have one week of camp, where they learn vocals, improvisation and monologue, and then they will practice for three more weeks for a play they will present to the public in July.

The students range in age from 8 to 18 and are broken up into different groups where they will work with their group on different sessions to learn the basics of acting.

Sixteen-year-old Molly Brown decided to attend drama camp because she loves acting.

“Drama is my passion,” Brown said. “I wanted to get better.”

Brown’s group has been working with monologue coach Tim Cheeseman, who is a teacher at Shawnee High School.

Also learning about monologue is another student wanting to dig deeper into learning about acting.

Mackenzie Brock, 14, said she attended the drama camp last year, and she had a lot of fun.

“I really like acting,” Brock said. “I’ve been doing it for a long time.”

Brock is looking forward to the showcase on Friday, where they will display what they’ve learned this week to their parents.

The showcase is new this year for the campers, and between improv, acting and music, each group will have something different to show their parents and family of what they have learned.

Emily Hunt, 18, who has also been focusing on monologue, said she has learned a lot so far this week.

“This class taught us a lot about emotions,” Hunt said. “It helped me organize my mind.”

Hunt, who plans to study drama in college is enjoying drama camp because it is helping her get more training for the future.

A younger group at the drama camp is working on rehearsing the play “Hansel and Gretel,” which they will showcase for their parents on Friday.

“I learned that when you act, the audience has to see your face,” 10-year-old Emma Horner said of an important part of acting.

Horner’s favorite part of drama camp is the teacher game.

“The teachers came up with creative games for us, including a game where we act like we’re professors and we talk about a subject.”

Ten-year-old Claire Kohler, also of Wapakoneta, enjoys this game, as well.

“You get a piece of paper and you act like you know everything about this subject,” Kohler said.

Kohler, who will play Hansel in Friday’s play, said she is learning the basics of acting and is excited to perform for their parents.

Kohler said she plans to be a member in the high school drama club.