As schools across the county kick into gear, CenterPoint Academy of Learning and JAKS Theatre Company are also starting their fall classes. Starting as early as Aug. 31 and as late as Sept. 5, the classes are for kids, teens, and sometimes adults who want to experience the opportunity to sing, dance, and get a taste of what it’s like on stage.
“I feel the skills people learn are life skills even more than they are performing skills,” said Margo Beecher, director of CenterPoint Academy. “Students can develop confidence, learn to work with each other in a more effective way, and so many other things.”
CenterPoint Academy of Learning, which is based in the Davis Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA)in Centerville, has nearly 20 classes on its fall schedule set to start the week of Sept. 5.
Covering everything from music and dance to the performing arts, the classes are divided by experience levels and are available for everyone from 3-year-olds all the way up to adults.
“I honestly don’t think age matters,” said Beecher. “The opportunity to grow and learn is exciting regardless of age.”
Some CenterPoint Academy classes are involved in putting on theatrical productions, which are held onstage at the DCPA.
JAKS Theatre Company, based in Syracuse, is also expanding its classes to give more people the chance to learn. In addition to their JAKS Players, the group that puts on two plays a year down in Salt Lake, JAKS is adding two new groups: JAKS Follies and Little Rascals.
Follies, for kids ages 5-18, is designed as a less intensive theater option for kids and teens who are interested in performing but don’t want to get involved as deeply as the Players require.
“I wanted to give people an option that required a little less commitment,” said JAKS Director Jill Wilhelm.
The Follies group will focus on music and chorus line-style dancing. Rascals, which is designed for younger kids, will focus more on acting and performing. The two groups would combine together to work on two performances a year.
“They’ll team up,” said Wilhelm.
The JAKS Players will also do two shows for their upcoming season. The first will be “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” which will come to the Rose Wagner Theatre in Salt Lake this coming February. The second show, which hasn’t been announced yet, will be early next summer.
For information about this year’s classes at CenterPoint, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 801-298-1302. Sign ups for the JAKS programs will be Aug. 27 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 2491 S. 1150 West in Syracuse.