Let ‘Em Sing; Let ‘Em Dance!

The curtains barely went down on the final performance of Pirates 2- The Hidden Treasure, and the inaugural cording ceremony began. The ceremony honored the achievements of students who have mastered performance and technical theater skills.

How was this measured, you ask?

The Oregon Conservatory of Performing Arts (OCPA), the only Southern Oregon year-round theater conservatory for kids, offers several new certification programs. Now, kids who love to sing and dance can track and measure mastery in two specific areas – performance and technical. Upon completion, they can not only celebrate but go on to show these skills at the college or professional performance level. Dennis Foster, Co-Founder of OCPA, is excited about the program because it offers “academic pursuit within the theater realm.”

Although OCPA is not a theater school, all staff members are academicians as well as experienced theater folks. He believes that adding the certificate programs emphasizes process over product. OCPA had their first cording ceremony this past weekend, and they are hopeful that the word will spread about these new opportunities.

Dennis Foster says, “I do not know of another theatrical outlet that offers a free certificate program as open as
ours that could be applicable to a professional theater career or even higher education scholarship opportunities.”

There is an enrollment form coming soon to their website (http://www.oregonconservatory.org/).

In the meantime, know that the enrollment process is an open-ended and students can begin or end at any time. Then, every class or camp they register for and complete is tracked and applied toward the certificate programs. And the programs are not just for children. In fact, soon, they will be doing senior theater (as in over 65 years of age). It is never too late to let them see you sing and dance especially in Southern Oregon!

Here are the specific skills and areas of mastery for each certificate if you are interested:

The performance certificate involves:

  • 150 hours of participation in Magic of Theatre Camp (Kids Summer camp = 60 hours, Teen Camp = 80 hours, Spring Break Camp = 30 hours)
  • Developed skills in Theatre basics (terminology, safety, etiquette), Basics of Singing, Improvisation, Character Development
The technical certificate involves:
  • 300 hours of participation in Magic of Theatre Camp
  • Completed coursework in (developed skills in) 3 or more of the following:
    • Auditioning
    • Vocal Technique
    • Acting
    • Improvisation
    • Scene Work
    • Stage Management
    • Character Development
    • Theatre History
    • Theatre Literature
To earn the Certificate of Advanced Mastery in Technical Arts, students will do: 
  • 300 hours of participation in Magic of Theatre Camp
  • Completed work in 3 or more of the following areas:
  • Stage Management
  • Light/Sound Design
  • Advanced Development and Construction
  • Costume Design and Advanced Management
  • Production Communications (contacting personnel, calling cues)
  • House Management
  • Theatre History/Literature (Dramaturgy)

Oregon Conservatory of Performing Arts
313 Middleford Alley
Medford, Oregon 97501
541-776-9118

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