The first-ever marionette boot camps at Graceland University have been scheduled for August 2015. Students entering grades fourth and above are invited to take part in two, two-day events dedicated to marionettes and their role in theatre.
Participants will be guided through the process of creating a marionette – a puppet controlled from above using wires or strings – and receive hands-on experience in the process of creating a storytelling puppet show. They will participate in acting, singing and performing, will work in the scene shop, and take part in aspects of technical theater, including lighting and sound, all in the state-of-the-art Shaw Center on Graceland’s Lamoni campus.
“My hopes are that we afford students the potential for making new friends, learning how to collaborate on projects, and employ a lot of creativeness, all with a hands-on approach,” says Lee Maples, Assistant Professor of Theatre and Scene Designer at Graceland University.
“Theatre builds confidence, helps students learn social skills, teaches discipline, helps overcome shyness, and many other tangible and intangible qualities, all necessary lifelong skills. Most importantly, theatre is an extended family. I love sharing my passion for designing and theatre while creating our next generation of artists, storytellers and theatre goers,” continued Maples.
There will be an afternoon performance on the second day of each session, open to the public, where participants will display the skills they’ve learned and the shows they’ve produced. At the end of camp, each student will get to take with them the marionette they create, along with a Graceland University Marionette Boot Camp T-shirt.
Interested students entering fourth and fifth grade in Fall 2015 are invited to attend the camp Aug. 11 and 12, and students entering sixth grade and above are scheduled for Aug. 11 and 12. The cost for the two-day camp and all take-home materials is $30 per student. Each student will need to provide their own lunch.
To register for the camp, contact Kash Dhanapal at the Lamoni Community Center, or Lee Maples at Graceland University at firstname.lastname@example.org. Some limited scholarships are available for low-income applicants.