BrightPath is always looking to broaden the learning experiences of the children in attendance at our centres and we are excited to add a new partnership with Trickster Theatre to our offering. Trickster Theatre (a company of physical theatre) takes residency in schools, or in our case a child care centre, for a week and creates an original 90-minute theatre performance involving the children in attendance. Children are given the opportunity to experience the roles of director, producer and/or artist as well as try their hand at lighting, sound, curtains, costumes and props! The show is based on a theme chosen by the centre and developed with the assistance of Trickster Theatre. Trickster helps discover the show through a very simple group improv process and then takes what they’ve found and figure out a story that can be told based on those findings. The entire week is spent planning, creating, script writing, practising and making props. Through the week an original show is created with the children and artists cumulating in an exciting performance on Friday, the final day of the residency.
The opportunity to act supports development of physical memory assisted by verbal, visual and emotional components. Having children act means they are speaking more, have greater visual stimulus and emotional involvement. Perhaps one of the most important skills children learn from drama is self-confidence. Through these classes, children become more confident speaking in front of one another. As they gain self-confidence they also gain self-esteem. In addition, acting classes focus on articulation, timing and vocal projection – all things that can improve public speaking skills.
BrightPath McKenzie Towne in Calgary and BrightPath West Henday in Edmonton were excited to welcome Trickster Theatre to their centres in July and August respectively. It was very exciting to watch for friends and families who came out to support the amazing performances and the lower floors of the centres where Tricksters was set up were buzzing with excitement and energy. The acts were comprised of lots of props such as plungers, bins, bamboo poles, pool noodles, scarves etc. Of course, everyone was exposed to the complete theatre experience with floor-to-ceiling curtains, a big sound rig and costumes as the gymnasium was transformed into a magical theatrical “black box” theatre with every student performing in the final production. The whole week included lots of parent volunteers and parent participants during the show! The children learned to write better stories, think about fantastical journeys, make their imagination go wild and then bring it all to life. Trickster transformed the school into a fun and interactive live theatre event that engaged the students in a performance they will not soon forget!