Campers at Encore Stage and Studio Spring Break Camp strike a tableau while other campers guess the story.
Photo by Shirley Ruhe.
Cars full of bouncing, excited children line up in the parking lot of Cherrydale United Methodist Church on the first day of spring break to participate in Encore Stage and Studio outdoor, in-person Spring Break Camp.
Each camper has completed a health screening focused on COVID-19 symptoms and will undergo a temperature and symptom screening before interacting with others each day. Each camper will remain in the same small group for camp activities and will be provided with their own supplies so that students are not sharing materials. Frequent sanitizing breaks are scheduled throughout the day.
Masked campers emerge from their cars with blanket, water and snack tucked under their arms and head for “Over the Moon,” the first day’s theme for movement, theatre games and crafts led by Encore’s Teaching Artists.
Day 2 is “The Sword and the Stone;” Day 3 “The Emperor’s New Groove;” followed by “Tangled” on day 4 and “Wonder Park” on day five. Enrollment can be tailored to an individual’s schedule by choosing selective days or the entire week with morning or afternoon camp offered.
Multi-colored blankets are spread out in the yard of the church while hands shoot up in the air. “Who wants to be in the tableau?” Alicia Sykes, counselor, says, “Okay. based on today’s play of the Moon Goddess, what were we looking at?”
“I was looking up at the moon.”
“I’m so glad you weren’t stolen.”
A tiny voice volunteers, “a rocket.” Someone adds in, “everyone else was dancing.” Sykes explains that they create a tableau, which is a frozen picture. “You strike a pose and then we see if the others agree with the story.”
Encore is a theatre company In Arlington “by children for children” that touches 15,000 children and adults in a normal year. All classes are taught by professional artists and geared toward the skill level of the students enrolled. Encore| has been offering virtual classes during the pandemic but “can’t wait to get back together again on stage” and are offering their award-winning camps in person this summer. https://www.encorestageva.org/