CampYATC Gives Away Full Scholarship to Celebrate 20th Anniversary!

Join Megan Hilty, Laurie Metcalf, Julia Lester and more this summer!

By: Jun. 17, 2021

CampYATC Gives Away Full Scholarship to Celebrate 20th Anniversary! By Janice Hillstrom

CampYATC Teacher Megan Hilty says, "The only thing I don't like about YATC, is it wasn't around when I was a teenager!" Having returned to YATC numerous times, working professionals like Hilty acting as Summer Camp Master Class teachers is just one of the things that sets this summer camp apart from many others. Hilty is just one of the amazing guest faculty teaching in the 20th Anniversary Season of The Young Actors' Theatre Camp. The luckiest campers in the world will also get to learn from Alex Brightman (Beetlejuice), Kate Rockwell (Mean Girls), Laura Bell Bundy (Legally Blonde), Eden Espinosa (Wicked), Laurie Metcalf (The Conners) and many more!

Set in the gorgeous Santa Cruz Mountains of Northern California, campers come from all over the world to discover and develop the artist within. And with the CDC having reopened overnight camps in California and guidelines that will keep campers and staff safe, YATC is back, in person and as co-founding Camp Director Shawn Ryan says, "Better than ever!"

And this summer - one lucky contest winner will win a full ride tuition to the session of their choice, including airfare and ground transportation!

To enter simply visit The drawing will be held at 5pm(PST) on June 30, 2021 and Summer Camps run all summer long!

Celebrating 20 years of creating a safe and supportive environment for kids of all ages and levels, YATC co-founding Director Shawn Ryan explains, "We have certainly made our mark as one of the best training camps in the country and we are proud to be the only one that does not hold an audition to gain admission. We all deserve the chance to explore the arts and an audition may keep those budding artists from coming to camp and sharing their gifts with this amazingly supportive community."

YATC's mission, set forth back in 2001, was one of total acceptance and inclusivity. "The goal is that campers interested in the performing arts can develop the skills that they have already acquired, all while discovering new skills that will help them turn from performers into well rounded artists," states Associate Director Valerie Dohrer, who started at CampYATC almost 15 years ago as a high school aged camper and now runs the admissions and programming departments. "CampYATC is a true family. Many campers and staff members have been with us for 5+ years."

Through a series of unforgettable Master Classes led by the likes of 2 Time Tony Award Winners Sutton Foster and Laurie Metcalf, Megan Hilty, Laura Bell Bundy, Darren Criss, Jonathan Groff, and quite literally too many to name here. Classes in Acting for Film, Singing, Dancing, Improvisation, Writing, Visual Arts like costuming, lighting, set design, plus stage combat and so many more! And then there are the themed activities: Talent Shows, Sing-A-Long S'mores Roasts, Dungeons and Dragons Campaigns, even a night themed after RuPaul's Drag Race where campers have the chance to dawn their best Drag outifts and strut the cat walk or jump up on stage and lip sync for their life!

Camper August Rinehart proclaims, "Disneyland got it wrong! CampYATC is the happiest place on Earth!"

"Imagine a land where you completely fit in for being authentically yourself. And then to add to that magic, you are around 150 other humans who all are having that same experience. I truly think that Camp YATC is the best gift parents can give to their aspiring artists, whether it's on stage or off, in front of the camera or behind. And the projects that these kids accomplish at camp are unparalleled in terms of professionalism," explains one Mom of 5-time YATC camper.

CampYATC is not just a training ground, but also a foundation for professional projects that find their way into the mainstream of the entertainment world. To date, YATC's short film program has had 31 films play in over 50 Film Festivals around the world including the prestigious American Pavilion at the Cannes Film Festival! And with the creation of over 15 Original works of Theatre, YATC saw it's first NYC Premiere of it's latest musical "Hell on Earth: A New Musical (about middle school)" at 54Below last year with guest artists Laurie Metcalf ("The Connors") and Broadway's Anthony Rosenthal ("Falsettos"). "We are insanely proud of our students and staff for coming together each summer to learn all they can about their craft and then apply that knowledge to their real world projects."

When asked about the Camp's Alumni, Ryan seemed to beam right through the Zoom screen, "We are SO proud of every single camper that has come to camp over the last 20 years. They each decided to set an intention to learn about the arts and apply themselves to their craft. And that is what it really takes to elevate your skills in this business." This interviewer pried a bit more to ask about those campers who have gone on to make names for them selves in the Industry and the proud Camp Director shared even more. "There are far too many success stories from over the years, but one that will always stick in my mind is when Ari'el Stachel (2018 Tony Award Winner for "The Band's Visit") came to camp with his sister and really only wanted to play basketball. I traded court time for one memorized monologue and when I went to see him in the show on Broadway, he introduced me as the man that taught him his first monologue. It was very emotional for us both. Here was this young artist who was able to find a community of people that believed in him and held him up and he continues to find such success in the arts."

And Ari'el Stachel is only one of thousands of success stories! Bobby Conte-Thornton (Company), Jillian Butler (Les Miserables National Tour) and Julia Lester (High School Musical : The Musical : The Series) were all at one time campers at The Young Actors' Theatre Camp.

Julia, who plays Ashlyn on the Disney hit shared, "One of the most important things about theatre is having a sense of community. At 11 years old, I attended the Young Actors' Theatre Camp and felt that sense of community for the first time ever. I think YATC is so important for young performers because you get to meet kids that are just like you and having that opportunity is so important and so inspiring. YATC does an incredible job of creating a sense of community that we all need, especially during this time. YATC is very special to me (because of) the life long friendships and memories that I have created."

For more information on The Young Actors' Theatre Camp visit them online at or call (925) 858-3548. Registration is currently open for their 5 Summer Sessions for students age 8-18 years old. On TikTok, Instagram, & Facebook you can follow all the camp fun: @CampYATC

They encourage all levels and as Ryan says, "We want to have YATC be your home away from home, not just during Summer time but for the rest of your artistic life! This is the community that we've grown carefully for 20 years and we cannot wait to have you and your family be a part of our camp family."