LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - Students from all over the country are in Lawton this week for the 2019 Next Generation Performing Arts Camp.
The week-long performing arts camp is for musical theatre, strings, and collaborative piano. In the mornings the students rehearse for their musical or concert, in the afternoons they have classes within their branch, and in the evenings they will have rehearsal or will do a performance of some sort.
“We know that other camps exist that are often state run, but there’s not often camps that are affordable that students can come to or fit within a family’s schedule,” said Valerie Canon, musical theatre director at the Next Generation Performing Arts Camp. “So, a week is generally a little better, especially in the summer, and they can come and get education within the track that they’re in as well as do the performance aspect.”
Many of the students and counselors have attended the camp in the past, and have maintained their friendships over the years.
“It feels like family," said Canon. "It’s my family that lives all over the country and we get to have a family reunion once a year and create art and it’s magical.”
“There’s a lot of amazingly talented faculty here and just knowing them is really amazing," said Jeremy Ward, a strings student at the Next Generation Performing Arts Camp. "But also, just the ability to come and really focus intensely on what your craft is for a straight week is not something you normally get and allows you to kind of jump start that process of getting into the next steps.”
Callie Johnson, a musical theatre student, said her craft has improved since attending the camp.
“I always wanted to perform, but this camp made me know that I wanted to do it for a living,” said Johnson.
“I love everything about this camp," said Eva Cole, a collaborative piano student at the Next Generation Performing Arts Camp. "It’s definitely more challenging than some of the other camps I’ve been to, and that’s something that I love.”
If you are interested in auditioning for next year’s camp, the counselors encourage you to come to the final performances on Saturday, both at Cameron University. The strings showcase concert is at 2 p.m. in the McCutcheon Recital Hall in the Music Building, and the Drowsy Chaperone show will be at the University Theatre at 8 p.m.