Music Theatre for Young People camp now at NU; performances set for June 18, 19

Jun 18, 2015

Camps for sports, science, music and more continue this summer on the Newman University campus. This week, Newman is hosting the local organization Music Theatre for Young People, or MTYP, for the second youth summer camp of their summer season.

MTYP as an organization exists, as Executive Director of MTYP Kim Gee Vines put it, “to engage, encourage, and educate young people through musical theatre.”

MTYP continues that mission year-round. Rehearsals and shows generally take place at Century II. However, last year MTYP used Newman’s Performance Hall as a venue for their 30th anniversary show. To continue the relationship between the university and MTYP, Newman Senior Development Officer David Alexander and Newman Director of Theatre Mark Mannette worked out the parameters to use the De Mattias Fine Arts Center as MTYP’s rehearsal place and performance space for this particular summer camp.

The MTYP camp is set to perform the musical “Honk! Jr.” at 4:30 p.m. on June 19 in the Performance Hall in the De Mattias Fine Arts Center. Admission is free, but donations to the organization are encouraged.

MTYP’s current camp at Newman University is labeled as an “Advanced Camp,” intended for student performers in the middle school and early high school age range. The camp gives the student performers an opportunity to experience the entire process of putting on a production, but fits it all in a week-long timeframe. There are 17 youth performers in the show, as well as a director, music director, choreographer, two camp counselors, and an executive director.

From 8 a.m to 5 p.m. since Monday, the camp has been in the rehearsal process. With only an hour break for lunch, the 17 students in the camp are working very hard. The show’s director, Phil Taylor, said that, “The camp is very fast-paced, very quick, and it’s very enjoyable for the kids.”

The show’s choreographer, Gavin Myers, agreed that the camp is, “A fun time for kids.” Myers, Taylor, and Vines all commented on how MTYP’s summer camps are great opportunities for student performers to discover new talents about themselves, particularly pertaining to singing, acting or dancing.

An outgrowth of MTYP’s current summer engagement with Newman also allowed for a high school camp to be added. The high school camp, a group of high school aged student performers as well as some MTYP alumni, will present “Pirates: The Musical!” at 5:15 p.m. on June 18, in the Performance Hall. Vines thought Newman’s space would work great for this quick addition for high schoolers to get a feel and taste for Newman University, as well as add an extra performance opportunity. This show is also free of charge with suggested donations.

For more information about Music Theatre for Young People, their current summer camps, or future camps and shows, check out their website: