Theatre Camp Takes Drama to the Next Level

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Acting isn’t always about looking glamorous.

That’s the lesson middle and high school students are learning today as they watch Wendy Boyak use “street makeup” to transform Justin Ford from a fresh-faced eighth-grader into a disfigured accident victim.

With a black eyeliner pencil and brown, red, green and yellow eye shadow – plus “nose and scar wax” – Boyak creates a believable wound. She’s been applying stage makeup for 18 years, so she easily explains each step as she goes. For example, green makeup simulates “dying skin,” while the red-covered wax mimics scabs.

“Now it’s your turn to try on yourself,” she says, pointing to the audience in their seats in the Psalm Center for the Performing Arts. They go from staring at Ford’s makeup job to clambering onstage to try it on themselves and their friends.

“Can we put on nice, normal makeup?” asks one middle schooler, sounding a little worried.

“Sure,” says Boyak. “But you might try something more advanced on your hand or arm.

Boyak and the other instructors at Theatre Camp, an annual tradition at Corban, are all about taking drama students to the next level. For two weeks, fourth-through-12th graders train and improve their singing, acting and dancing. Along the way, they learn how to apply stage makeup, to write scripts and much more.

“We provide a platform to enable students to explore and express their God-given creativity while encouraging them to delight in the theater process … not just the end product,” says the director of Theatre Camp, Professor Tamara McGinnis.

At Theatre Camp, students do present an end product, too, though. At the end of two weeks – this year, that day is Saturday, July 29 – they put all their work together for their parents, friends and college staff. Much of the recital showcase’s material is original, with scripts and songs written by members of the 13-person Theatre Camp staff.

This year’s teachers are Rene Tyson, Vanessa Terzaghi, Laura Brabish, Theresa Blount, Jennifer Bailey, Lana Buckholz, Kasey Roberts. Workshop leaders are Kathleen Lindley, Jeff Carter, Wendy Boyak, Mark Davis, Stephanie Staley and Laura Brabish.

  • Middle school and high school Theatre Camp students pose after their stage makeup session.

  • Middle school and high school Theatre Camp students pose after their stage makeup session.

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