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Top 5 Reasons for Kids to do Musical Theatre Camp

Adventure Theatre MTC has a long history of its Summer Musical Theatre Camp program, over 42 years and counting! And we have seen many kids grow, learn, and take risks as a result of it.

We’ve pulled together the top reasons that our students fall in love with Summer Musical Theatre Camp and why you will too!

Learning Empathy

Exposing your children to different types of people and stories is the cornerstone benefit of exposing your children to theatre. It’s also one of the top sought-out 21st Century Skills. But, actually walking a mile in another person’s shoes really pushes them to understand how feelings affect a character physically and emotionally.

Students learn to stay present in their bodies, emulate body language, respond to the sound of a person’s voice, and listen to others.

Reading, Recognizing, and Rhythm

Results from research by Purdue University indicates that seeing theatre boosts students comprehension and analysis. But in recent research at Eastern Michigan University, seventh graders who read The Diary of Ann Frank were asked to participate in a corresponding drama activity. Students agreed that the active learning allowed them to help jump-start their imagination and gain a deeper understanding of the story.

Not only can you expand your understanding, theatre is a great place to practice social skills as well. Theatre activities allow for repeated practice of skills including appropriate conversation and tone, recognizing nonverbal facial expressions, initiating friendships, and asking for help.

Additionally, rhythm and vocalization increases language development, and identifying patterns in rhythm uses both sides of the brain, resulting in a “total brain workout” which improves performance in both the arts and the sciences.

Students learn invaluable skills for academia: reading comprehension, social skills, and musicality which can lead to stronger mathematics and science skills. Not to mention, thinking on your feet- literally!

To thine own self be true

Art is personal experience. One person’s past, present, and future looks completely different from another person’s – even if they’re up for the same role. And that’s how it’s supposed to work! Individuality and vulnerability brings new life to characters in a play or musical.

Students get a chance to take risks! They dig deep to explore themselves and how they want to portray their characters.

Mistakes Happen

Some of the best art has mistakes in it. Art isn’t perfect. It’s messy and complicated, but it always is the culmination of hard work. A wrong note, a dropped line, or a late cue happens sometimes.

(Personal story. Once I was in a production of The Gift of The Magi. The entire play pivoted on a neighbor telling the lead character that she could sell her hair for money. And the person playing the neighbor left the stage without saying the line. The narrator picked up on the flub and improvised a short line so the play could move forward. No one in the audience noticed there was a mistake.)

Students learn just because you mess up, it’s ok. Keep going and keep challenging yourself to do better.

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work!

Theatre is a team effort, and everyone has to “perform their role.” All the gears have to move and shift simultaneously backstage, front of house, and onstage. Sometimes you’re the lead, and sometimes you’re selling tickets. But every part is essential.

A lot of kids will come into camp only wanting one kind of role (i.e. a princess or the lead in the musical). But they leave learning that every character has a moment to shine, and it’s up to them to make it happen.

Students learn to show up, respect each other’s skills, and communicate to make a musical work.