Theater Project to Hold Free Demo Class at Maplewood Library, 1/18

Kids and their parents will have the opportunity to meet the teachers and sample the classes of THE THEATER PROJECT CLASSROOM in a free demonstration class on Saturday, January 18 at 2 PM. This preview will be held at the Maplewood Memorial Library, 51 Baker Street, Maplewood, NJ. 07040.

Subsequent classes run once a week for six or twelve weeks, and take place at the Burgdorff Center for the Arts, 10 Durand Road, also in Maplewood. The classes - Juggling, Puppetry, Glee and Improv -- are designed to allow kids to have fun, build confidence and enjoy discovering new interests.

Juggling is being offered for the first time by THE THEATER PROJECT, and it's perfect for children who like being active. Students will improve their coordination, concentration, and amaze themselves with how much they can do. NO EXPERIENCE REQUIRED. Instructor Louis De Lauro, an award winning NJ teacher, is the founder of Juggling for Life, a non-profit helping disadvantaged children learn to juggle and learn how to teach juggling.

Puppetry is also new on the schedule. Constructing and working with puppets allows even shyer children to experience the joy of performing though the character of the puppet. Teacher Penny Rapicano is carrying on her family's long heritage in puppetry. With a degree in Child Development, she founded the Garden State Puppetry Guild, and works with children and senior recreational programs.

Glee (Show Choir), is for children who want to develop singing skills coordinated with movement to express a song's lyrics and emotions. Gail Lou, a professional vocalist, actress and musician, brings her experience from films, stage and television to her teaching. She studied at Berklee College of Music and holds a degree in Vocal Music Performance from Montclair State University.

Improv is returning again this year. This class emphasizes creativity, teamwork, and develops extemporaneous public speaking skills. Lulu French brings her love of theatrical improvisation and 10 years' experience to her classroom. She studied with the Upright Citizens Brigade in Chicago, and appeared in New York at Gotham City Improv and the Magnet Theater among others.

Classes will be limited to 15 students. Small classes enable every child to receive the time and attention each deserves. All the classes develop kids' confidence in themselves while they develop skills and attitudes that go beyond the stage. Whether they go on to Broadway or the board room, these skills will last a lifetime!

At the end of the fall semester, each class concludes with a final presentation that shows off all that the children have learned, and adds the final element - the audience. Parents can get more information about the introductory workshop by email at or by calling Education Director Daaimah Talley at 908 809-8865. Visit for more.

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