A group of children in the KMC had the unique opportunity to take to the stage during a two-week Summer Theater Camp held at KMC Onstage.
KMC Onstage, U.S. Army Garrison Kaiserslautern’s community theater program run by the directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, has been looking forward to offering educational programs for young people, said Nate Records, KMC Onstage’s artistic director.
“This camp kicks off our education program on KMC Onstage,” Records said. “Now, we’re looking to do things like this year-round.”
The 17 campers, who range from ages 8 to 15, receive a wide array of skills needed for theater, from acting to technical aspects, Records said. During the two weeks, children learn set design, play writing and vocals lessons. They break up the lessons with theater games.
One morning they discussed “Commedia dell’arte,” a form of Italian theater that is the basis for everything from vaudeville, to the slapstick comedy of Adam Sandler films. The kids worked in groups to improvise a skit that showed people annoyed at a fly.
“You can swat at the fly, jump on things,” said instructor Hannah Schweinfurt. “It’s about the characters reacting.”
Corrine Senkbeil said that her children Kaden, 13, and Kennidy, 10, enjoy the opportunity to take part in community theater. They have been taking part in KMC Onstage since last November when they arrived in the area, inlcuding supporting the “Never Ending Story” performances.
Theater is teaching them how to be in front of people, she said. Now, with everything from school projects to other presentations, they will have more confidence, Senkbeil said. Plus, acting is something that military children can take with them when they move.
“They are so excited, going on about what they got to do on stage,” Senkbeil said. “They love to act and sing. It’s wonderful to see them growing.”
Upcoming programs may include classes for children at the Kaiserslautern Community Activities Center and Daenner Kaserne. Autumn and spring performances will include opportunities for children.
If children are not interested in acting, there are also design and technical jobs they can do to participate the theater in other ways, Records said.
The summer camp final performances, original plays based the Brothers Grimm fairly tales, will be held at 3 and 6:30 p.m. Saturday. The community is welcome to attend the performances at KMC Onstage, Bldg. 3232 on Kleber Kaserne.
For more information on this and other KMC Onstage activities, call 0631-411-6626 or visit www.kaiserslautern.armymwr.com.