In Focus: BCT Jr. Theater Camp Puts On A Show
There are a lot of different elements to the art of show business. There’s the acting, singing, dancing and even set design. Somehow, the Bemidji Community Theater Junior Theater Camp manages to pack all of these skills into two weeks.
“There are some theater camps where you go in, you learn a play and you put it on and you have a couple weeks to do that. This camp, while you do put on a performance, it’s mostly about building skills and building skills on skills on skills,” says Kristine Cannon, the program director for BCT Junior Theater Camp.
This year, around 60 kids participated in the camp.
“Some of kids they have extreme shyness. They’ve never done this before. They may be have never been on a stage. They don’t know how to memorize lines, but they all come together and as I was saying, theater is not a team, it’s a family,” says Hannah Fletcher, the basic acting teacher for the camp.
The teachers are members of the Bemidji community who have learned their craft inside and out.
Hondo Langhout, one of the dance instructors, says, “The first couple of days we have the dancers, they’re learning some basic movements. They don’t know it, though, because we do it through games. We do folk dances with them, rhythmic activities, we do some ballroom steps.”
Gregg Wilimek, the scenery and painting teacher, says, “I teach them how to do many different surfaces like stone and brick and wood and they also get to work with building a fireplace out of cardboard and doing a lot of decorative additions to the work.”
The BCT Junior Theater Camp has already produced more than a few local stars. A few of our instructors say that if these kids want to see success as an actor, they’re already on the right track.
“You kind of just need to have a respectful attitude and attitude is everything, and just to feel like everyone started somewhere and that it’s not weird for you to start with nothing,” says Charles McCalip, a camp counselor.