Theatre camps aid aspiring actors in Qualicum Beach

Summer Youth Theatre workshop trains talent for Bard to Broadway’s future stars

There is still room for the various theatre camps being held this summer as part of Bard to Broadway’s performing arts education series.

This year marks the 15th annual Summer Youth Theatre Workshop for young performers ages seven to 14, at the Village Theatre in Qualicum Beach.

The workshop will run daily from July 15 to 21 where young thespians will spend a fun week of teamwork building and performance skills with a new original play with music.

The Star Children tells the story of youth from across the universe coming together to share knowledge, understanding and friendship in an attempt to save their endangered planets.

Students will participate in casting, read through and an introduction to the songs to begin their week of training as actors, singers, dancers, and crew.

Students leave with a rehearsal schedule based on their roles in the play and will attend the workshop from 10 a.m. to 12:30 and or 1 to 4 p.m. daily, depending on their rehearsal schedule.

Younger students and chorus roles may have several half days throughout the week.

Students learn character and body work, theatre terms, stage blocking and memorization skills and enjoy a variety of acting games, voice and movement exercises and theatre activities with full days of rehearsing their scenes leading up to the performances.

The workshop concludes with two performances at the Village Theatre, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 21.

Past workshops have introduced over 600 local and visiting youth to the world of the stage many returning year after year to their week of theatre camp to put on a show.

Once again Thea Stavroff, an award winning community theatre director and actor will be leading the students and will be joined by musical director, Dr. Sherilene Chycoski.

Belle Warner-Varney, a Grade 10 Ballenas Secondary School (BSS) student will be part of the directing staff for the workshop.

Warner-Varney is no stranger to the stage.  She had a role in the BSS performance this year of Into The Woods and was also the musical director for the school production.

She said she was thrilled when Stavroff asked her to help in this summer’s youth theatre workshop.

“I love helping the kids.  It is so much fun,” she admitted.

Warner-Varney has been involved in youth theatre since she was six years old and judging by her busy theatre schedule these days, her future will no doubt include live theatre.

“I would love to go to a good university for acting,” she said, but agreed it’s not exactly the most stable career to pursue.

She pointed out that she prefers live theatre to screen acting because it is more personal.

“It is nice to be able to see people’s reactions.  You don’t get that acting in a movie.”

She confessed that she is a bit of a control freak and that is why she enjoys directing.

“It is satisfying to tell people what to do.”

Warner-Varney is currently busy with rehearsals for B2B’s production of Hello Dolly where she has the role of Ermengarde.  She will also be participating in the teen musical theatre (TMT) workshop this summer.

TMT, for ages 13 to18 goes July 30 to August 18 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.  The three week workshop production of the teen-friendly musical A midsummer Night’s Dream will include acting, singing, dancing and stagecraft at the Village Theatre.

Jump, a junior music and performance camp for ages six to 13 runs from July 23 to 28.  No experience is necessary for the classes which will include singing, choir, rhythm, improvisation, acting dancing and fun.

A student showcase performance will be held July 28 at the Village Theatre.

B2Glee is the teen show choir camp for ages 13 to 18 which begins September 16 for the fall term and Jan 13, 2013 for the spring term.

The voice, dance and performance camps are held at the Shelly Road Centre in Parksville.


For information or registration contact Hilary Whelton at 250-752-0547 or



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