Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Kids Discover the Stars at Long Wharf

Kids will be able to reach for the stars and beyond at Long Wharf Theatre’s fourth annual Discovery Day, an annual community outreach event that introduces area children and families to the fantastic world of theatre.

This fun, family event, will take place on Saturday, Oct.9, with registration beginning at 9:30 am on the Mainstage, located at 222 Sargent Drive, New Haven. The adventure begins at 10. There is a suggested donation of $5 per family or $2 per person. All donations from this event will go towards funding a family friendly spring production entirely adapted, produced, designed, and built by the Next Stage residents, early career professionals working in a specific field of theatre.

Discovery Day has grown in popularity over the past four years with over 200 people attending last year. This year’s theme is “Out of This World,” and is appropriate for kids ages 3-15.

“I was inspired by watching my young son’s love for Star Wars, with all of its sounds, costumes, sets and cool props, and thought, what better way to introduce children to theatre then by exploring the theatrical possibilities of outer space,” said Annie DiMartino, director of education and administrator of the Next Stage program.

Children and families will embark on a journey to become “theatre artists of the future,” experiencing fun and innovative workshops in set design, costume construction, props-making and sound experimentation, all while experiencing creative dramatics. Students will also participate in an acting workshop, where they will learn about character creation, stage movement and more.

After they have completed their “training,” children and families will blast off to an out of this world theatre, showing off all of the interesting theatrical tricks they’ve just learned. “They are not only learning how to create something within the workshops, they see how their work gets implemented onstage,” DiMartino said.

Everyone working during Discovery Day will be playing a character, immersing children in a cool, improvisational atmosphere. Mallory Morris, a resident in the education department, has been helping to put together the script for the day’s event. “It is very neat and something new within the structure of this year’s event,” Morris said. “It will be exciting for the people working Discovery Day and the people coming to Discovery Day.”

The residents, who represent a host of theatrical disciplines, including lighting, sound, and scenic design, have been in the process of preparing the event’s final countdown. It is the first project the residents will be working on – the preface to their work together on the children’s show later in the season.

For more information, call at 203-787-4282 or visit the new www.longwharf.org.

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Lauren Yarger with playwright Alfred Uhry at the Mark Twain House. Photo: Jacques Lamarre)

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