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Students training to stage ‘Alice in Wonderland’

By Staff | Jun 24, 2010

From left, Jessica Vernoy, Lehua Simon, Kristi Scott, Vania Jerome, Ashlie Welte and Heather Goss form this year’s instructional team for Theatre Theatre Maui’s summer performing arts program.

LAHAINA — Forty-two students from various schools on Maui and their dedicated production team have been fully immersed in an expanded six-week performing arts camp provided by Theatre Theatre Maui (TTM).

Now in its third week, students enrolled in TTM’s 18th summer program have been receiving daily vocal, dance and acting training at the Music Building on the Lahainaluna High School campus.

This year’s camp will prepare them for performances of a version of the Lewis Carroll classic “Alice in Wonderland” presented in special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service of Colorado.

 A team of theater professionals — well-versed in drama, music and dance and with impressive stage resumes — is led by Summer Program Director Kristi Scott. They  have been sharing their creative energy and expertise with the students.

The other instructional members of the team are Vania Lee Jerome, music director; Lehua Simon and Ashlie Welte, assistant directors; Heather Goss, choreographer; Jessica Vernoy of the LHS Class of 2010 as camp assistant.

Gotcha! Director Kristi Scott catches a few not-as-sneaky statues as the students played theater games in the Band Room at Lahainaluna High School.

 The student mix is new each year with TTM’s entry point of students completing third grade on up through high school. This summer’s group ranges in age from eight to 16, and two incoming ninth-graders are making this summer their sixth consecutive year.

When asked why he participates in theater camp, Levi Delos Reyes responded that “it’s fun — it engages my mind by trying new things and prepares me for future careers.” 

Taylor Trout said, “TTM is the one place I can satisfy my drama craving each year. I have learned to express and be myself over the past six summers,” she added.

During the final week of the camp, the production team, cast and families will move off the LHS camp location; transport props, costumes and equipment; and set their stage at The Westin Maui Resort & Spa in Kaanapali.

Following a few more days of rehearsals onsite, the ensemble will present their show full of song and dance. The production is anticipated to be quite entertaining.

A short preview will be held midmorning on Saturday, July 10, at Barnes & Noble during a weekend fund-raising Book Fair for TTM. A morning matinee will start off the public performances on Friday, July 16, followed by evening performances on July 16 and 17. The finale will be held in the afternoon on July 18 in the hotel’s Haleakala Ballroom.

Theatre Theatre Maui, a nonprofit organization headquartered in Lahaina, is dedicated to bringing the performing arts to the students and adults of the greater West Maui community.

Established in 1991, TTM continues as a grassroots organization supported by the West Side community and sponsored in part by the County of Maui.

For more information, or to offer theater services or other support, call 661-1168 or e-mail TTMWestMaui@aol.com.