Gifford Family Theatre introduces Summer Arts Institute for young performers

Samantha McCormick, Staff Writer

Turns out local kids have more things to look forward to this summer than just shorts and sandals. Gifford Family Theatre is set to introduce its Summer Arts Institute, a three-week camp that is an outgrowth of the Summer Youth Theatre.

The program is a result of Le Moyne’s department of visual and performing arts and the department of communication and film studies’ decision to expand summer offerings for youth. The program begins with a “theatre camp,” which runs July 9-20 for youth entering grades 6-12.

“Campers will spend mornings learning acting techniques and specialty areas such as improv and stage combat,” Gifford executive director Lynn Kasper said, “and they’ll spend the afternoons in rehearsals for a final performance for friends and family at the end of the two weeks. The campers will work in the first-rate Jesuit Theater in the W. Carroll Coyne Performing Arts Center.”

The film program, open to high school students, runs July 23 – 27.

“Mornings will be spent viewing movies and analyzing them from a number of different angles,” Kasper said, “trying to understand how they manipulate emotions, examining specific genres, looking closely at films as auteur products and focusing on how specific themes may be represented in film.”

“In addition to feature films, other media, such as music videos, television shows and film trailers will be used,” Kasper noted. “Youth will spend the afternoons doing post-production work, using the film department’s state-of-the-art film-editing software to produce their own trailers, which will be screened for friends and family on the final day of camp.”

The summer ends with a strings camp, running August 6-10 for youth entering grades 4-12. Violin, viola, cello and bass players who have been playing their instrument for at least one year can get a chance to hone their skills.

It seems that no matter what students are interested in, there is something for everybody in the Gifford Summer Arts Institute. For more information, call (315) 445-4230, email [email protected] or visit