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Theatre Tulsa Academy Launches Online Summer Classes

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Theatre Tulsa has redesigned its summer Theatre Tulsa Academy programming to be fully online in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Previous Theatre Tulsa Academy summers were built around four weeks of in-person training and rehearsals, culminating in full-scale productions at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center. The revamped program offers up to 8 weeks of weekday online class sessions throughout the summer.

This summer's education programming will be divided into three segments.

Broadway Beginners features basic technique training and games for ages 5-8. It will be held Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in two-week installments. This program is designed to be fun and engaging for young children of any skill level.

Broadway Bootcamp offers weekly theatre activities such as singing, acting, dance and crafts, for ages 7-11 based on weekly themes that connect to favorite Broadway musicals. The weekly themed structure of this program allows families to build a schedule that fits alongside vacations, camps or other summer activities.

Broadway Bound is a more advanced program for ages 12-18. Every two-week schedule includes core classes in Acting, Dance and Vocals, plus a variety of elective classes in such areas as improv, audition preparation, film acting, stage management, scene writing, script analysis, costumes, and hair and makeup. This course is fully customizable, so teens can build a personal education program based on their specific interests.

"Flexibility is the key word for Theatre Tulsa right now," says Kia Hightower, education and outreach coordinator for Theatre Tulsa. "Because of the pandemic, we have to be ready to respond quickly to changes in a way that ensures the health and safety of our students."

Because of the closing of the Tulsa PAC for the time being and the new guidelines on social distancing, Theatre Tulsa determined that June and July were too early to return to live rehearsals and performances.

"While it's a shame that we can't put on our usual large youth shows this summer, we found that this solution opens up a lot of other possibilities," said Hightower.

For example, she said, families no longer need to commit to specific dates in June and July to rehearse and perform. Instead, the program was fully redesigned to allow parents and their kids to build a personal schedule that works with their family plans.

The new program also has the ability to provide professional instruction from across the country. Instead of having only Tulsa-based instructors, Theatre Tulsa has scheduled theatre professionals based in New York, Chicago, and other locations to host classes this summer.

Finally, keeping the classes online allows students outside of Tulsa to join the program. "We've had families who loved Theatre Tulsa Academy in the past move away from Tulsa, and we're excited that those students can rejoin their Tulsa friends in these classes," Hightower said.

More information about the Theatre Tulsa Academy summer program is available at theatretulsa.org/education.

For questions or more information about Theatre Tulsa and its upcoming shows and programs, visit theatretulsa.org, call 918-587-8402 or email info@theatretulsa.org.


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