Registration is now open for Winter Classes for ages 3 - 20 atOddfellows Playhouse Youth Theater in Middletown. Classes start January 3, 2022. All classes will be held in-person at the Playhouse?s facility at 128 Washington Street. The three classrooms and theater in the building have all been upgraded with high volume air purification systems, masking is required, and the Playhouse is following all State and Federal guidelines to ensure a safe return to in-person programs.
First out of the gate are classes for teenagers, which will start the week of January 3 and run for six weeks.
?Writing Plays?, for ages 14 - 20, runs Mondays, 7 - 8:30 pm, starting January 3. The class provides young writers the opportunity to develop short plays under the tutelage of nationally-recognized playwright Kristen Palmer, culminating in a New Plays Festival on Saturday, February 12.
Teen actors also have the chance to explore the physical side of acting with ARTFARM Artistic Director and noted actress/director Marcella Trowbridge. ?The Embodied Actor?, which will meet Thursdays, 7 - 8:30 pm, allows actors to explore the body as the primary expressive tool for emotion accessibility and storytelling accuracy.
Visual artists can join ?Visual Art Explorations? with Renee Soares, which will meet Wednesdays, 7 - 8:30 pm. In this high-energy art class teen artists will explore various media and prepare work for an exhibition at the Playhouse.
Young people ages 12 - 20 who want to learn about working backstage can join the ?Technical Theater and Design? class, which will meet Tuesdays, 5 - 7 pm, starting January 11. Students in this class will learn fundamentals of lighting, sound, costuming, scenic design, props, painting and carpentry and will have the chance to work backstage on this winter?s two main stage productions.
At the other end of the age spectrum, Saturday Circrobatics classes are available for ages 3 - 5 and 6 - 8. Circrobatics classes start January 8 and continue through February 26. Circrobatics is a unique combination of circus, acrobatics, games and creative movement.
All other classes begin the week of January 10 and run for 8 weeks, culminating in an in-class Share for families the week of February 28. All Stage One and Two classes run from 4:45 - 5:45 pm during the week. Stage One classes for ages 6 - 8 include Creating Comic Books (Mondays) , Circus I (Tuesdays), Musical Mentoring and Musical Theater Dance and Movement (Wednesdays), Complete Actor I (Thursdays).
Stage Two classes for ages 9 - 11 include Musical Mentoring and Hip Hop Dance Mondays), Comic Acting (Tuesdays), Circus II (Wednesdays), and Complete Actor II(Thursdays). Hip Hop Dance is open to ages 9 - 14.
The Junior Repertory Company (ages 12 - 14) will be mounting a main stage production of Alice in Wonderland this winter. Rehearsals will be Mondays and Thursdays, 4:30 - 6:30 pm, starting January 10, with performances March 17 - 20. Auditions are December 20 & 23, 4:30 - 6:30 pm (if these dates have come and gone by the time you see this, we encourage you to contact Oddfellows to arrange an additional audition date).
Circophony Teen Circus, open to ages 12 - 20, is also mounting a main stage production this winter. The Things That Go Creep is an original circus-theater piece inspired by classic horror films. Auditions were held in mid-December, but anyone interested in joining is again invited to contact Oddfellows to arrange an audition. Rehearsals will be Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 6 - 9 pm, starting January 4, with performances March 3 - 5. Prior circus experience is not required.
Middletown Public School students may complement their class experience with Oddbridge, an extended day program which provides transport from Middletown schools to the Playhouse, a snack, and supervised arts activities, games and homework help before classes start. Oddbridge extends through the school year, providing special programs and field trips on early dismissal days or days when regular Oddfellows? classes are not in session.
For more details on times, tuition and class descriptions, please go to www.oddfellows.org. If you have specific questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (860) 347-6143. Tuition varies from $120 - $300, but Financial Aid is available for all programs. It is Playhouse policy that the arts should be available to every young person regardless of ability to pay - no one is turned away for lack of funds.
Oddfellows Playhouse, founded in 1975, is Connecticut?s oldest and largest performing arts program for young people. Oddfellows programs are made possible with support from the Middletown Commission on the Arts; Connecticut Office of the Arts/DECD; City of Middletown; The Fund for Greater Hartford; American Savings Foundation; State of Connecticut Judicial Branch (Youth Violence Prevention); Middletown Youth Services Bureau; Community Foundation of Middlesex County; Maximilian E. & Marion O. Hoffman Foundation; Middlesex United Way; CHEFA Cultural Relief Grant; New England Foundation for the Arts/New England Arts Resilience Fund; George & Grace Long Foundation; and many generous individual donors.