Dedicated Teens Participate in Shakespeare Camp in Staunton
The curtain has closed on a three-week theater camp at the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton.
The first session of the crash course in William Shakespeare's work wrapped up with a performance Sunday.
But when you think of teenagers, you don't necessarily think of a love of Shakespeare. However, the cast of three shows at the theater camp breathed new life into the 16th century playwright's work, with energy and a sense of humor.
High school senior Aric Floyd has a deep appreciation for Shakespeare.
"He's not just a playwright, he is an artist, he's a word crafter and there's so many things that are hidden in the text that we've gotten the tools to be able to look for and unlock," Floyd said.
With this final performance in the role of Mirabel in John Fletcher's "The Wild Goose", Floyd and his fellow campers at the American Shakespeare Center are wrapping up a whirlwind 60 hours of rehearsing these final shows, 30 hours rehearsing a preshow performance, and days of meeting professional actors and campers from all over the world.
"It's fun in the sense of, wow we just ran a marathon together, but we're so happy, fun, because every day you get back to the dorm and you're exhausted but you know that you've grown together and you know that you've shared experiences," Floyd said.
As a former camper, director Kimberly Newton knows the impact of these three weeks.
"They're leaving with confidence and knowledge about Shakespeare's staging conditions and his plays and really with a passion to keep learning and to keep studying," she said.
Floyd hopes this performance will inspire audience members of any age to get past the embellished language, and give the bard the chance he deserves.
"I'm blessed to have been exposed to all he has to offer and I hope that this camp and our performances and what the American Shakespeare Center does helps to instill that blessing on many, many more people," he said.
Session two of this summer's theater camp is full.
But you can catch the final performances on August 4 at the American Shakespeare Center.