This past Friday, July 25th, Camp MusArt’s 17th annual season culminated in a production of Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jr. Our talented students showcased all the work they had done in the past five, enriching weeks in their performance at the East Los Angeles College Performing Arts Center. Families, friends and guests were enthralled by the professional production and could not have been prouder of the growth of all the children.
Camp MusArt offers students a safe, inspiring and unique immersive experience into the world of musical theatre through daily classes in music, art, dance and drama. Nearly fifty children ages 7-14 explore their creativity over five weeks as they work together with their instructors to produce a musical. Many students have never been onstage before, or ever integrated multiple arts disciplines into one performance. Through this experience, students gain the self-confidence and poise that allows them to shine onstage.
Before show opening, LAMusArt’s Programs and Events Manager, Manuel Prieto, greeted the audience in the sold-out theatre and thanked the staff, production team, students, and parents for their wonderful contributions. Our production would not have been possible without the willing partnership of Vy Li and Jim Johnson, East Los Angeles College Dean of Academic Affairs and Theatre Manager, respectively. Their combined dedication and support of our program and young stars allowed us to present a professional production in our community.
Soon after, the orchestra tune-up began as the lights faded to black and the audience waited with eager excitement for the performance to begin. Backstage, the students were prepared in their costumes, hair and makeup. Their focus could not be broken as they held hands as an ensemble and encouraged one another to “give it all they got.” The curtain rose, lights went up, and the brilliant storytelling began.
Immediately, the stage came to life with beautiful costumes, incredible set pieces, and amazing talent. The audience followed the journey of the little mermaid, Ariel, through exciting song and dance pieces as she longed to be on land with humans. Favorite numbers such as “Under the Sea” and “Kiss the Girl” went swimmingly and boasted the children’s hard work, leaving the audience in awe.
Once the cast sang their final note and basked in the bright stage lights, the audience erupted in a thunderous applause. The students took their respective bows, and like Ariel, they were transformed into confident artists. As the main curtain came down, the smiling students cheered with laughs and hugs for their accomplishments and newfound friendships.
The Camp MusArt staff was honored to be a part of the children’s world, and everyone certainly can’t wait for the magic that will surface next year!