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Theater camps build variety of skills

Local theatre organizations offer many choices

Published in Seacoast Kids' Summer Camp Guide, March 27, 2019. Excerpts of the full article are included below.

Theater camp is just what the budding thespian is looking for. But, it also serves a wide range of interests in kids who are unfamiliar with the performing arts or unsure about them or just looking for a creative outlet.

All the local theater camps offer more than acting. There's theater arts such as props, sets, costumes, lights and directing. Some offer scripted shows, others the opportunity to write new works. And it's not all about being squirreled away in a theater either. Most offer outdoor activities.

All the theater groups interviewed for this story agreed. Theater camp builds a variety of skills with confidence being the most important cited, along with working with others and just having fun.


Upside Arts

Location: Day Camp, Portsmouth Overnight Camp: Camp North Star, Poland, Maine

This is the latest company offering children's theater camps, led by a trio of familiar thespians, co-directors Miles Burns, Alden Caple and Seraphina Caligiure.

Upside Arts will offer three programs, each running for two weeks, and ending with a performance.

"These specifically focus on using imagination, honing skills for the stage, and creating brand new characters for original theatrical productions," Caligiure says. "Our day camp program is one-of-a-kind because stories are written specifically for the students... We have been working with the same team for years and have a great formula for a summer of fun and whimsy!"

The nine-day overnight camp is currently set for Camp North Star, Poland, Maine. "Our professional staff has been working together for eight-plus years and some have even been campers themselves," Caligiure says. "Upside Overnight Camp strives to create magic... leaving our students with memories and friendships that last a lifetime."

Day camp sessions: An Oz Story, June 24 to July 7, (an original by Joshua Goldberg) Babe and Bunyon's Big Adventure, July 8 to July 21 (an original by Burns) Alice, July 22 to Aug. 4 (an original by Burns)

Costs: Day Camp, $650 per camper/session. Sibling discount available. Early and aftercare options available. Overnight Camp, $1225 per camper

Contact: or


Prescott Park Arts Festival

Location: On site

Two core sessions, one is three weeks, the second for two, age 8 to 17; and a one-week teen intensive for 12 to 18.

"(PPAF) has announced a new partnership for their youth theater camp offering, Camp ENCORE! with the Seacoast's new theatrical production company, Upside Arts led by Miles Burns, Seraphina Caligiure and Alden Caple," Director of Operations Angela Greene says. "The camp program will offer area youth the opportunity to participate in and ultimately stage their own musical productions on the Prescott Park stage as part of the Arts Festival season."

PPAF has added a Teen Intensive one-week program this year, which will feature "The Addams Family." "The first two sessions will definitely continue community outreach as they have in the past," Green says. "It's a good opportunity for the kids to get their feet wet and perform before an audience."

Camps: Early and after care available for a fee. Sibling discounts on single camps, and for multiple sessions. "Mary Poppins, Jr.," June 24 to July 14, $825 "Once On This Island, Jr.," July 15 - July 28 "Addams Family," July 29 to August 4, Teens ages 12 to 18, $225

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