MSA opens doors for summer camp

Published 10:21 am Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Mississippi students entering grades eighth through 10th with a passion for the arts will have the opportunity to experience Mississippi School of the Arts during its Summer Arts Camp.

The camp will be held from May 31 to June 5 for one week of intensive arts training in creative writing, dance, theatre, visual art and vocal music with classes taught by faculty. MSA Executive Director Suzanne Hirsch said the experience of the camp is very similar to that of MSA students on a daily basis.

“They will take classes with our arts faculty,” Hirsch said. “Overall, the curriculum is an age-appropriate curriculum, but similar in scope to what we try to give our students. It’s the same at night, residential students will have activities and similar to what we do when students are here during the school year.”

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Students will have the opportunity to study two art forms of their choice for the week, Hirsch said, culminating with a showcase for students to show their families what they have been doing all week.

File Photo Dance is one of the five disciplines that will be taught at the MSA Arts Camp this summer. Deadline for registration is May 29.

File Photo
Dance is one of the five disciplines that will be taught at the MSA Arts Camp this summer. Deadline for registration is May 29.

In its second year, the program has 55 students signed up already, up from the 45 students participating last year. Hirsch said last year’s Summer Arts Camp went extremely well, as was indicated by a survey given to evaluate the new program.

“We did a survey for the students and staff and parents, and the feedback was extraordinary,” Hirsch said. “We were really excited about how everyone felt that they were a part of our family at MSA and wanted to be involved with what we’re doing. That was a really big validation for us that we need to be doing this program.”

Budding artists may participate as a residential or commuter student, contributing to what Hirsch said makes the camp such a great opportunity. She said an important difference between the camp and the normal school year is the camp does not have an experience requirement, so any student interested in the arts may attend.

“Normally students have to audition to be a part of the school, so we’re hoping this can be a form of outreach for the community to be involved in what we do here,” Hirsch said.

“There are a few art camps in the state, but they are much more expensive programs. I think there’s only one residential, and the rest you have to be in the area to attend,” Hirsch continued. “We’re hoping by giving the options of commuting or residential that it opens up the possibility for children here and across the state to be able to experience the arts in some way during the summer.”

Applications are at MSA and camp space is limited so students are encouraged to turn in applications by mail or in person as soon as possible up to May 29.