Let the kids act up these holidays

If you’re sick of your teenagers fighting at home during the school holidays, why not send them to one of Norpa’s April holiday workshops and they can fight there instead!

Norpa is presenting two week-long holiday workshops – one that includes clowning, fight choreography and slapstick for 13 to 16 year olds, and another on acting and drama for eight to 12 year olds.

Norpa artistic director Julian Louis said children will love learning new skills in a fun environment with experienced instructors, and will also get the opportunity to show off what they’ve learnt with a performance for family and friends at the end of the week.

“These workshops are a great chance for kids to express themselves through acting and stage work – it’s highly physical and really encourages a sense of teamwork and respect,” Julian said. “With something like stage fighting, where it’s quite dangerous if you make a mistake or aren’t careful, it takes an incredible amount of care and discipline to pull it off on stage. It’s really asking the children to step up and be focused. Working with some of the country’s finest professionals, you really see children come out of themselves.

“We had a workshop last holidays and there was this shy young girl who wouldn’t even say her name aloud to the circle when we started. But by the end of the week she was so confident and fully participating. It’s an open classroom environment where the kids actually have input into what’s happening, so they can really let their imagination and creativity run wild.”

The introduction to clowning, fight choreography and slapstick will be led by one of Australia’s leading fight choreographers and comic actors, Scott Witt.

Scott has been working in stage, television and film for over 25 years, directing and acting with the Sydney Theatre Company, Opera Australia, Queensland Theatre Company, La Boite Theatre and many others.

The second workshop is called Acting Up, which is all about developing skills in character, improvisation and playmaking.

It is being taught by Ajita Cannings, who has performed with Circolino Pipistrello Circus in Switzerland and tutored with the Riverina Young People’s Theatre.

Both courses run at Lismore City Hall from April 6-9 and also at Mullumbimby Civic Centre from April 12-16.

For information and bookings, visit www.norpa.org.au or phone 1300 066 772.

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