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While we usually think of summer as “time off,” it’s actually a great occasion to flex your creativity muscles. That’s right – theatre camps will reap major rewards if you invest the right amount of time and energy into them. On The Stage presents seven things you shouldn’t skip before and during your summer programming.
There are a variety of great themes you can choose for your summer camp. (Psst, if you need some ideas, On The Stage’s Guides to Summer Success have a wide array.)
While you may want to go with the most attention-grabbing or flashy theme, there are several things to consider before landing on one in particular. Ask yourself these questions:
We know, we know – the admin portion of camp is boooooring. But getting all the back-end details secured early will make camp run so much smoother. A few things you’ll need to do before launching marketing efforts for your camp include:
Summer theatre camps are a great opportunity for campers to explore creativity and improve their general skills, all while having fun. But you need to plan accordingly to ensure the camp is engaging, entertaining and educational – not just one (or two) of the three.
A few ways to keep your programming dynamic include:
It’s no secret that technology is integral to modern-day theatre. So, utilizing tech on both the front and back ends of your programming can create a strong camp experience for everyone. A few ways to utilize technology include:
Marketing and fundraising for your camp should be major priorities before enrollment begins. After all, early marketing can help you secure resources for your program – whether that be funding, volunteers, or equipment … all of which can be in high demand in the summer.
Start marketing your summer theatre camp as early as possible to maximize interest and attendance. Utilize school newsletters, social media, fliers, email lists, community partners, and local media outlets.
You should also plan early for summer fundraising ideas – everything from car washes to talent shows will work to secure money for your camp. If you’re looking for inspiration, the Summer Fundraising Ideas Infographic can help.
Your programming won’t succeed if you’re not able to scout out campers and get their interest prior to enrollment. A great way to find potential campers is through engaging with feeder schools in your community.
If you’re not familiar with the term, a feeder school is an institution from which many or most students progress to a particular higher-level educational institution. (Think elementary and middle schools in your area.) The students at these feeder schools could be the future of your program – your next potential pool of actors and crew members if you’re at a school yourself. So, creating and maintaining relationships with these institutions is important.
Young actors (and their parents, too) are always looking for things to do in the warmer months. Capitalize on that open market by engaging with these kids prior to summer.
Engaging feed school students to become your campers can look like:
Last, but not least, remember that this camp is all about the campers. Hosting a final performance is a great way to prove that.
Consider a showcase of scenes or monologues, or even a film screening if your programming allows it. This will help your campers feel accomplished and will also show parents what you’ve been working on. This, in turn, will surely impress – leading to more loyal patrons and campers down the line.
Whether you are a drama teacher, involved in community theatre, or work at a theatre company, On The Stage’s informative guides can provide you with all the essential knowledge to organize a successful summer program.
If you’re looking for a partner to help elevate your summer camps, book a personalized demo with On The Stage to get started today!