This past Saturday, the ETC Interns (acting + one of the stage management) and I kicked off ETC's newest educational endeavor at the Get Smart About Art Festival as part of the ArtsWave Sampler weekend. ETC's Play in a Day program is a response to the ever growing requests we receive for programs that work for community centers and after-school programs. We have all kinds of workshops and classes, etc., but I really wanted to build a program that gives the kids a chance to create, not just learn as they play theatre games.
Play in a Day takes the Prelude concept and condenses it, giving kids the opportunity to write, design, build, and perform their own original play in 3 hours. Make no mistake, there is no time to smooth rough edges and refine, but the rush of creating something and putting it onstage RIGHT NOW is pretty incredible, and the kids love the immediacy of it.
On Saturday, we had around 60 kids participate in our project as they flowed in and out of our booth at the festival. The play they wrote together was called "The Princess and the Dragon" and utilized some of the costumes from past education outreach programs. The kids developed the story, drew their visions for the scenery, costumes, and props, which my team and I then worked with them to create for the performance. I was thrilled to see many of the kids who had contributed to the play in the audience for the performance because it was proof as to the captivating nature of this program. In fact, after the performance, the kids RUSHED THE STAGE! They wanted hugs, pictures, and to reclaim their own drawings and designs.
It was a thrill for me to not only work with my usual little students, but also their parents, friends, families, and ETC's own interns, who wowed me with their own creativity and initiative. Way to go everyone!
P.S. – Pictures are coming soon!!