Oddfellows Summer Classes

Improv training will encourage students to “actively listen” to and to work with their partner to successfully create an Improv with a discernable beginning, middle and an end

Oddfellows Playhouse announces its summer classes and programs for students ages 4-18. Our programs cover a lot of ground, from circus to improve and playwrighting and allow students from 4 to 18 to develop their creativity and build life skills such as public speaking, teamwork, cooperation and self-discipline.

Little Fellows: The World and Work of Mo Willems (ages 4-7)
August 6-17, Monday to Friday, 9 am to 3:30 pm
Tuition: $350 
Join Oddfellows as we explore the very busy world of Mo Willems, author and illustrator of “Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale,” “Pigeon Wants a Puppy” and the Elephant and Piggy books. 

Working with professional teaching artists, your child will be at the center of the action, writing, acting, paining and creating a new story inspired by the work of the beloved author and illustrator. Before- and after-care options are available to extend the day to fit with parents’ work schedules.

The 24th Children's Circus of Middletown (ages 8-14)
July 2-Aug 3, Monday to Friday, 9-11:30 am or 12:30-3 pm
Tuition: $125 for Middletown Residents, $250 for Non-Residents

Participants will have the opportunity to learn acrobatics, juggling, clowning, stilting, unicycling, capoeira and visual art over five weeks, and create a spectacular outdoor circus performance for a crowd of over 1,000. The program is a partnership between the City of Middletown and Oddfellows Playhouse and takes place at Macdonough School in Middletown.

Improv Boot Camp (Ages: 14-19)
Instructor: Peter Loffredo Dates: 7/16 - 7/20 Time: 6-9 pm
Performance: Friday 7/20 - 7:30 pm Tuition: $300

Improvisation is the fun and spontaneous art of acting without a script. Students work in the format of theatre games or short-form scenes that address important theatre skills such as listening, making clear and active choices, timing, and teamwork. Games encourage students to ‘be in the moment’ and to make spontaneous character and conflict choices, and learn what sustains those choices for the length of the scene. 

Improv training will encourage students to “actively listen” to and to work with their partner to successfully create an Improv with a discernable beginning, middle and an end, and help introduce the idea of observation to help develop character choices and to expand actors personal range and repertoire.  The week-long boot camp will end with a Friday evening performance for the public.

Playwrighting Workshop
Ages: 14-19 Instructor: Kristen Palmer Dates: July 9 - July 13
Time: 6-9 pm Tuition: $300

Whether you are embarking on your writing your first play or sharpening your skills, this week-long intensive will provide you with the tools to not only tell a great story, but create a producible play. In this class, experienced playwright Kristen Palmer will help you develop skills such as building structure, crafting a plot, dialogue, setting, and theme, and format. 

All week, you will be focusing on your writing and be receiving constructive feedback from the instructor. A combination of lecture, writing exercises, and class discussion will help you grow and learn.

KRISTEN PALMER is a member of the 2010–12 Women’s Project Theatre Lab and a 2010–11 Dramatists Guild Fellow. She received an Individual Artist Grant from the State of Connecticut and the 2008–09 Jerome Fellowship at the Playwrights’ Center. Her plays include The Melting Point, Local Story, The Heart in Your Chest, Departures, and Gloucester Point.

They have been produced around the country including New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Washington, D.C., and New Haven. She is an associate artist of New Georges, a Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab Alumni, associate playwright of P73 Productions, and a former company member of Printer’s Devil Theatre in Seattle. She is a graduate of Bretton Hall College in Yorkshire, England and studies with Tina Howe at Hunter College.

For more information on programs, to register for classes or to purchase tickets to performances, call Oddfellows at (860) 347-6143 or log onto www.oddfellows.org.

Oddfellows Playhouse is located at 128 Washington Street, Middletown. For more than 35 years Oddfellows Playhouse has been more than just a performing arts program. It aims to make a positive difference in the lives of 1,500 young people each year by using the arts as tools to build self-confidence, communication skills, a sense of responsibility, and an appreciation for the richness and diversity of the world in which we live. 

Oddfellows programming is made possible through the generous support of the CT Department of Education, the CT Commission on Culture & Tourism, Middlesex United Way, The Stare Fund, the Middletown Commission on the Arts, Pratt & Whitney, the Irving Kohn Foundation and the Daphne Seybolt Culpeper Memorial Fund.  Media support is provided by Comcast and WESU 88.1FM.

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