Friday, April 29, 2011

Re-living Summer Camp

UCSCA (Upper Chesapeake Summer Center for the Arts) is a camp located at Washington College that offers practice and experience in a wide variety of art forms. I briefly mentioned this program in one of my earlier posts, I Got Summertime on my Mind. I attended this camp in 2002, and I am honored to be a part of this program again this summer, this time as an employee. I was recently interviewed and got the job as dance assistant and residential life counselor. This means I will be the assistant to the dance teacher at the camp and I will help with the dance classes, activities, and field trips. As a residential life counselor, I will be staying in the dorms with the kids and I’ll plan fun projects for them to work on together. I could not be more excited!

When I attended the camp almost ten years ago, I studied dance and it was a great experience. Other than dance, UCSCA offers such disciplines as acting and theatre, visual art: drawing, painting, photography, music: singing, instrumental, basically any kind of art you can think of. During the past couple years the program has changed and now allows students to pick more than one discipline. I think this is a great idea because many kids have more than one interest, so this gives them an opportunity to expand their skills in many different ways.

For the dance discipline, we took technique class every day, worked on projects, and went on a field trip. Our field trip was to the zoo because we had to pick an animal and watch how it moved. Then, we had to create a dance that mimicked that same movement style. This was one of my earliest experiences with choreographing and it inspired a lot of creativity. We also prepared for a final performance that took place at the end of the week and it included all of the different art forms presenting what they had been working on. This was a great way to see all the different ways you can view art, and for some of the kids, this was their first experience with some of the art forms. The dancers did a dance to "Amazing Grace" and prior to the performance, we got to record saying what grace meant to us. These voice recordings were added in to the song as we danced.

I’m so excited to see what kinds of activities the staff has planned this year. I’m also interested to see what changes have taken place since I was last at the camp because it has been so long. I get to experience this fun program once more from a new perspective and I feel very lucky to be a part of it. Not only will I get to participate in the activities and field trips, but I will also get a chance to guide the students and help them have the best experience possible. :)

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