For Immediate Release
The IRT Honors ISO Tickets During the Next Two Weekends
In an effort to support Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra patrons during contract negotiations, the IRT will honor symphony patrons that hold tickets to cancelled ISO performances. Patrons can redeem their tickets for any IRT performances through September 23. Shows include Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, The Syringa Tree and The Night Watcher. ISO patrons can call the IRT Box Office at 317.635.5252.
“All of Indianapolis and Central Indiana want a vibrant nonprofit arts community and we very much want to see people continue to come downtown and experience fine performances,” said Steven Stolen, managing director of the IRT. “While the ISO continues to progress and move toward a resolution, we want to encourage their patrons to continue their support of downtown, the arts community and enjoy a first class show at the IRT.”
Visit www.irtlive.com or call the IRT Box Office at 317.635.5252.
This year’s IRT Summer Conservatory for Youth is drawing to a close. For the last four weeks, dozens of Indiana students have received intensive training in movement, voice, and acting. Others have trained in costume and set design, directing and playwriting. Conservatory coordinator Harry Watermeier wanted to share the thoughts of three Conservatory participants:
At the risk of pretension, I’d like to offer the following quote from President Barak Obama: “The future belongs to young people with an education, and the imagination to create.” The authors of the following blogs—two actors and one playwright/designer, all exceptional conservatory students—have got imagination to spare. With any luck, our conservatory has provided them with a bit of education to help harness their natural talent and creativity, and bring them one step closer to realizing their potential as theatre artists. The following posts describe the experience of conservatory from the perspective of students themselves. I’m endlessly impressed with our student’s creativity and intelligence—characteristics that are apparent in the following posts. Reading about the IRT’s conservatory from the perspective of our students has been enlightening for me, as I hope it is for you.
–Harry Watermeier, Conservatory Coordinator
NOLAN (11-13 Year Group)
Hello, my name is Nolan and I attend IRT’s Summer Conservatory for Youth. I am eleven years old and this is my second year at Conservatory. I love it because I learn about acting and meet new people and have lots of fun all at the same time!
We play lots of acting games at Conservatory. We play these games so that we are comfortable with each other because we will be spending so much time together. Some of the games we play help us trust each other, too.
Every day after lunch we have a P.E., or personal enrichment, for one hour. These classes range from studying photography to dancing to making toilet paper costumes, to doing yoga! We have these P.E.’s all over the theatre, which is really cool. IRT is a beautiful theatre, and I am lucky to be spending my summer here! All of the architecture is awesome!
One of my favorite things about IRT is the people that you meet. The people that work here, the professional actors, the interns, the other kids, they are all so nice. Conservatory at the IRT is SO MUCH FUN!
SAM (14-18 Year Group)
This is not the first time I have joined the Summer Conservatory. I have been a part of this little show twice in the past. After a year of absence from the group, I’ve attended the IRT once more. Looking back on both of those years and on this year, I have been asked to give my opinions on the Summer Conservatory. I will be completely honest, making note of any flaws and all strengths that I can find. The fact of the matter is, however, that the strengths far outweigh the flaws, to the point where I don’t really notice them.
The IRT Summer Conservatory is something of a summer camp for young actors in the Indianapolis area. For four weeks, a group of young actors, ranging from eight to eighteen, audition to be a part of the Conservatory and learn the ins-and-outs or acting, theatre, and storytelling. The students – as I cannot think of a better term at the moment – are able to choose a series of “Enrichment Classes,” which allow students a wide range of courses that appeal to their interests in Theatre, such as stage combat or British dialects. There are two major courses: The Acting Track, wherein the students learn about…well, acting, and the Production Track, which teaches students about stage design and playwriting. I shall speak about the former.
If I had to narrow it down, there are really two major things about the conservatory that make it a grand old time, but those two things are fairly important things. The first is that the faculty members—the interns, teachers, directors, etc. – all know what they’re talking about, know what they’re doing, and know how to say and/or do it. These people are fitting for the job because they have a passion for the craft that they do. They know the theatre like the backs of their hands, from the history of the craft to the techniques. The most important aspect of this, though, is that they all know how to communicate to a younger audience in many ways. They’ve never talked down to us and do not treat us like idiots; the students are treated like human beings eager to learn, and they teach the students in a way that is natural, digestible, and occasionally humorous.
The second element that makes the Summer Conservatory work is the students. There is a fine sense of camaraderie amongst the group that you join. All of you are interested in the same basic thing: theatre. They probably wouldn’t have joined if they weren’t interested, after all. Even if you and the other members come from different backgrounds, different tastes, different opinions or even beliefs, everyone is here not only to befriend you but also to help you if they can. As long as you’re willing to accept any and all forms of criticism, you will make friends here. You will make friends with the faculty, you will befriend the other students, the directors, whatever. Half of the fun is making friends out of some of these people.
This is all I have to say about the IRT Summer Conservatory. Thank You.
Dara (Production Track)
Almost every summer since I was nine years old, I’ve acted in a summer camp in Bloomington. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to realize that I don’t want to go college for acting, but Costume Design. And while I love acting, I’m going to be a senior in high school, and as my junior year wound down, I really wished I could study the production side of theatre over the summer. My mom told me about IRT’s summer conservatory, and how they had a production track, as well as an acting track, and I was immediately interested. Indianapolis Repertory Theatre has the only theatre- production focused summer learning camp in the state. I love that my classmates and I can work with and alongside professionals to learn about things like acting, playwriting, set design, costuming, stage management, and lighting—all in one four week camp. It’s an experience that is completely unique to the IRT. They have created a learning environment that is relaxed and fun, but still pushes us to be the best that we can be.
My classmates and I have done a lot of playwriting, but we’re learning writing techniques that I never experienced in high school. I don’t think I could have written what I have without the guidance and ideas the class has given me. In our set design class we are making miniature models of a set design for Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. What’s interesting about that is the fact that we were pushed to come up with our own unique interpretations, or concepts, for how we would do a production of Midsummer. While my concept is very traditional, some of my peers have chosen anything from a disco theme to setting the play in a New York subway station with costume design sketches to match.
I’m learning things from this program that I don’t think I could learn in any other summer camp. The adults here to help us out are so helpful and supportive. It’s really just a unique experience, and I’m so glad I’ve gotten to be a part of it.
Bingham McHale is proud to sponsor the community conversations for I Love to Eat and Nobody Don’t Like Yogi. I was fortunate to be able to lead two of the conversations following performances of I Love to Eat, a look at the life of James Beard, the first TV chef. The lively discussions from foodies of all backgrounds touched on their unique connections with food as well as learning more about James Beard. – Read More of Jim Reed’s Blog Here