Photos courtesy of the Algonquin Theatre
Local actor Robin Clipsham says that being on the stage changed her life and it excites her to get other people, children in particular, excited about it, too.
“I was a bit of a shy child. I never wanted to make waves. It wasn’t until I was in grade eight that someone gave me the opportunity to be on the stage,” says Robin. “This teacher gave me the opportunity to find myself. It has given me my whole life. It’s why I’m so passionate about it.”
Robin will be sharing her passion for the stage in two eight-week theatre camps at the Algonquin Theatre this fall.
The first – Stage One: Footprints – is for children ages seven through 11. It will allow them to explore what acting is all about through improve games, play-building and character creation. “It’s all about having fun on stage and working together to create something,” says Robin. “At the end, we’ll have a showcase of what everyone has learned.”
The second eight-week theatre camp – Stage Two: Fusion – teaches the essentials of acting to 12 to 17 year olds. “It’s a more performance-oriented class with a focus on scene study. We’ll explore improv, voice, movement and character creation to learn new skills. How do you listen as an actor? How do you develop and create the character? What will bring a script to life?”
Being on stage is empowering
Robin brings years of experience on and off the stage to the theatre camps. She is a judge and improv coach with the Canadian Improv Games and a member of the Woodshed Improv Collective. You may have met her character Peaches who has appeared at many events around town. And she loves to share her knowledge with others.
“I can’t just be an actor. I love my work on the stage, but I can’t stop trying to get other people excited about it. It’s like being a yoga teacher – you value your own practice, but also the joy, skill and development other people can gain from it.”
David Wray, an instructor for the Canadian Improv Games, will be helping Robin with the theatre camps.
“We’re excited to be diversifying our theatre camp experience for local children,” says Algonquin Theatre Manager Matt Huddlestone. “Robin and David have a tremendous amount of experience and they’re fun to work with. Kids are going to love these camps.”
Robin says being on stage is empowering. “Once you set a challenge for yourself, you grow. That teacher gave me that gift and that’s what I want to do for other people. There’s nothing like finding your voice.”
Both Stage One and Stage Two will run Tuesdays at the Algonquin Theatre from October 4 to November 29 (no classes on November 15). Learn more about the theatre camps and register at the links below.
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