Children are to bring to life the musical of "Rumpelstiltskin" during performances Friday, Saturday and next weekend.
Nearly 60 campers are participating in The Ritz Theatre's annual summer theater camp. A repeat camp with nearly 60 new campers is to be offered next week.
The youngest campers are incoming first-graders, and the oldest are incoming high school seniors.
PHOTO BY JILL GOSCHE
Campers strike a pose during theater camp Monday morning at The Ritz Theatre.
"Everybody gets a part," said Dianne Pytel, education director at The Ritz.
The musical is to include bumblebees, wizards, a king, a queen, a jester and Rumpelstiltskin.
Children go through the casting process Monday morning, start rehearsing Monday afternoon and put on the show at 7:30 p.m. Friday. They will have learned all of the dancing and lines, Pytel said.
If you go
Performances at 7:30 p.m. Friday and June 22 and 2 p.m. Saturday and June 23.
Tickets are $7 for adults and $4 for students and can be purchased at the box office.
"Their brains are young," she said.
Pytel said this year's camp marks the 14th year The Ritz has partnered with Missoula Children's Theatre.
"This is a well-oiled machine," she said.
The mission statement for Missoula Children's Theatre, which is based in Missoula, Mont., is: "The development of life skills in children through participation in the performing arts," according to its website.
"Within each MCT cast, girls and boys are equal; the disabled become able; the shy experiment with bravery; the slow are rehearsed to perfection; and the gifted become part of the whole," the website states. "The lesson they learn is that all of them are necessary for the show to go on."
Pytel said volunteers are important to The Ritz, and the theater couldn't put on the camp without the volunteer staff members.
Statistically, she said, volunteer staff members gave more than 500 hours to The Ritz during last year's two-week camp experience.
This year, Joan Ledwedge and Chris Joyce are chairing the camp, Valerie Nagel is the camp coordinator and Sally McDonald is the accompanist. Each age group also has a leader or two, and people volunteer their time to provide workshops for the campers.
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