Act Out Theatre Group in Dunmore offers online musical theatre classes starting April 9
From a press release:
In this uncertain time caused by the coronavirus pandemic, theaters have to get creative in order to deliver the arts to the public. Act Out Theatre Group in Dunmore has decided to get online in hopes to continue producing theatre and sharing the arts with the area’s youth.
“With everything going on, we hope offering these online courses to help keep everyone’s spirits up,” said Dan Pitttman, artistic director of Act Out.
“We hope this keeps a passion for the arts alive in the young and teens in the area, as well as maybe adults too.”
“Isolation Intensive” is a four-week class that is broken into three age groups: 4-9, 10-13, and 14 and up. The classes will culminate in a virtual cabaret at the end of the month.
Act Out parent Kelly Christianson from Wilkes-Barre is excited for classes to get started.
“I can’t wait for these classes to begin, as my daughter truly misses her theatre family and one of her creative outlets,” she said.
“This is a fantastic and safe way for everyone to stay in touch and work on what they love.”
Kim Pugliese of Wilkes-Barre Township and Shannon McLaughlin of Sweet Valley agree.
“My daughter was missing her friends and theatre,” Pugliese said. “This is a great way for them to stay in touch and keep doing what they love together!”
“My daughter is missing her Act Out family and was so happy to be able to connect with her theatre this way since she can’t be there in person,” McLaughlin added. “It is giving her something to be excited about.”
“Isolation Intensive” runs online throughout the month of April, beginning next Thursday, April 9. Registration is $50 and covers two classes a week, every Tuesday and Thursday of the month, culminating in a virtual cabaret. Those interested in registering should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit actouttheatre.com.
In addition, Pittman has been posting a free online institutional video series called “Acting In With Act Out” on the group’s YouTube channel:
Act Out Theatre Group is an organization focusing on performance and education of the art of musical theatre. Its goal is to not only produce fine art but to facilitate an educational and fun social climate where students ages 4 to seniors in high school can be free to express themselves without judgment, to learn about music and theatre, and to share a common passion among peers.
In 2017, Dan Pittman took over as Act Out Theatre’s artistic director and owner after Candice and Conway Rowe, who first opened Act Out Theatre, decided to pursue other opportunities. He ran Act Out Theatre Group at its Taylor location until 2018 when the building was unexpectedly put up for sale and sold. To keep the Act Out name alive and the arts program continuing, he found a new location at 150 East Grove Street in Dunmore.
Nothing short of a massive Act Out family effort allowed the theatre to close its final production at the Taylor location and move to Dunmore in a week. 19 days later, “Heathers: The Musical (High School Edition)” opened on the Dunmore stage.
Since that first production, the theatre has gone through a number of changes, but the family spirit has remained. Theatre offerings have evolved to include adult productions, educational theatre camps for children, family fun nights, and more community involvement opportunities. The theatre is committed to creating a safe, inclusive environment where all children and teens are encouraged to explore the arts. Smaller workshop opportunities allow for more individualized attention and for participants to be more than just a face in the crowd.
The theatre also has an active Parents and Friends Booster Club that plans to become a 501c3 entity. This will allow for greater fundraising efforts to bring workshop opportunities to more children and teens who might otherwise not be able to afford them.