Encore Michigan

Riverbank Theatre’s Performing Arts Academy offers six-week sessions beginning January; registration open now

NewsYouth/Family December 10, 2016 Encore Staff

MARINE CITY—In September, Riverbank Theatre launched a Performing Arts Academy, geared toward enhancing the student’s knowledge of the art of performance in the theater. This winter, the Academy is offering six-week sessions for students in Kindergarten through grade 12.

The Snug Bug Series is open to children in Kindergarten through grade 2, and is a great, non-threatening way to introduce a child to performing in front of an audience through the memorization of short poems and stories.

Acting I Workshops are being offered for students in grades 3-12.  Any aspiring young actor is encouraged to participate, as they will begin to build skills that they can trust in their performance, while having lots of fun and making friends.

The Academy is also offering the continuation of their Musical Theatre Workshop series with Musical Theatre II.  Students who successfully completed the fall Musical Theatre Workshop session will now put the skills they have acquired to use and present The Big, Bad Musical, a one-act production that is all about the trial of the big, bad wolf.  Performances of The Big, Bad Musical will be held on Saturday, February 18, at The Snug Theatre.

Two Theatre Summer Camp sessions will also be available in 2017. Enrollment filled to capacity within two weeks the previous two summers, so parents are encouraged to enroll early.

Ben Adair, a participant of the 2016 Youth Summer Camp and the musical production of Willy Wonka, said,The summer camp provided me with a week of doing what I love!  I was able to be in a show performed by kids only!  It was awesome to be with a group of kids who created a magical performance doing what we love.  We all had great attitudes, supported each other, shared lots of laughs, and met new friends.”

The Academy is under the direction of Aaron Dennis Smith who has experience teaching youth in all aspects of the performing arts, including voice, choir, show choir, piano, band, speech, and drama. He served as performing Arts Director at New Life Christian Academy in Kimball for seven years and continues to provide performing arts education to New Life through a contract with Riverbank Theatre. Some of Aaron’s past directing credits for youth include: Beauty and the Beast, Oklahoma, The Music Man, Seussical, Annie, and Mary Poppins.  Aaron has also been involved with Riverbank and Snug Theatre since its inception. He directed A Christmas Carol, The Drowsy Chaperone, Hello Dolly!, Cabaret, and Gypsy for the Riverbank and Snug Theatres. He has appeared on stage at the Riverbank and Snug Theatre in many roles; some of his favorites are Adolpho in The Drowsy Chaperone, Chuck Baxter in Promises, Promises, Michael in I Do, I Do! (opposite his wife, Brittany), Bert in Mary Poppins, and Richard Hannay in The 39 Steps. Aaron has also performed as an actor professionally in Branson, Missouri, and as a production singer for Carnival Cruise Lines.

Visit www.riverbanktheatre.com or call (810) 278-1749 to sign up today!

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