Sessional Classes

Arts Umbrella Theatre & Music Sessional Classes
General Program at the Robert M. Ledingham School of Theatre, Music & Film

From script writing, to technique, to performance, our Sessional Classes give young people an opportunity to discover the world of Theatre, Music & Film. Our programs help students develop imagination, build self-confidence, and learn to work as a team.

Supportive and knowledgeable instructors guide students through classes, following a unique curriculum that focuses on process and personal development. Class exercises and performances can help young artists feel more emotionally and physically comfortable with their artistic passions.

Learn more about our full range of Sessional Classes below, and visit our Important Dates page for details about registration.

Location Key
GI = Granville Island
SS = South Surrey
O = Online

Theatre

Acting

Ages 6-8, 9-12, 12-16
GI SS
Students will explore a variety of age-appropriate acting tools and techniques such as the relationship between the physical body and character. Younger students develop imagination, creativity, self-confidence, and empathy in a fun and expressive way. As participants progress, they will apply their techniques to solo and group scripts, improvisations, and devised work. Teen artists will learn to sharpen their instincts to make strong and consistent choices.

Acting: Place & Presence

Ages 12-19
O
In this program, students will develop a greater understanding of acting tools related to the body and the spaces around them. Participants will explore concepts created by Stanislavski, Chekhov, Patsy Rodenburg, and others. Through poetry and monologue texts, students will develop a solo performance piece that integrates both their physical environment and awareness of their space.

Musical Theatre

Ages 6-8, 9-12, 12-19*
Sing, act, and dance—together! These classes are for the young people who sing in the shower, or in the car, or anywhere else. Students will use Broadway and pop repertoire to learn  the fundamentals of musical theatre performance. Dance skills, acting techniques, and speaking/singing skills come together as students develop 1-3 ensemble songs for an in-class performance at the end of each term. As participants progress, they will incorporate harmonies, complex dance steps, and advanced acting techniques to further develop their musical theatre artistry.
*12-19 class only available at GI location

Physical Theatre: Mask & Clown

Ages 9-12
GI
Express yourself beyond the words on the page and experience the theatrical transformation that comes from working with masks. This class introduces young actors to the physical  theatre styles of mask and clown where students can explore improvisation through the stock characters of commedia dell’arte as well as the smallest mask in the world: the clown nose.

Public Speaking

Ages 9-12
GI SS
Speaking in front of a crowd takes confidence. Communication takes skill. In this class, students will learn about diction, tempo, and stage presence by exploring famous monologues and a variety of theatre exercises. Through these exercises, participants will develop the tools needed to speak with clarity and motivation. Discover the power of your voice and learn to inspire your audience.

Puppetry

Ages 6-8
GI
From Pinocchio to Sesame Street, puppets have an innate ability to nurture and inspire creativity. In this class, students will create their own puppet characters from the ground up and explore an art form that encourages curiosity, empathy, and imagination that will last a lifetime.

*NEW* Scene Study: Musical Theatre

Ages12-19
O
In this class, Musical Theatre students will take an in-depth look at the specific intersection of scene and song. Students will look at what makes a song work in certain scenes and vice  versa, learn to apply acting skills equally to both scene work and songs, and gain confidence performing freely within this space. Participants will critique examples of scenes and songs online, and will sing and/or perform with partners or in small groups online.

Sketch Comedy and Improv

Ages 9-12
GI SS
Improv teaches students valuable skills for life, such as problem solving, team building, and communication. This class is a group experience that allows students of all abilities to express themselves while also developing individual skills in creativity. Participants should be ready to play, explore, and share new ideas.


Music

Song Study

Ages 12-19
O
This course takes students beyond simply singing their material to uncover what makes a performance truly meaningful—creating solo works that make a lasting impression on audiences. All students will develop the same songs together over an extended period as they learn about style, musicality, song structure, lyricism, and more. Some familiarity with reading music
is recommended.

Voice Lessons

Beginner: Ages 7-9, 9-12, 12-19
Intermediate: Ages 9-12, 12-19
O
In small groups of up to four, students get specific coaching on the mechanics of great singing with a qualified voice teacher. Emphasis will be placed on anatomy, breath and release work, singing technique, and basic song interpretation. Students enrolled in intermediate classes require previous voice lessons experience.


Film

Acting for the Camera

Ages 9-12
GI SS
Develop on-camera acting skills through exercises, readings, and improvisation. Young actors build confidence and self-awareness both on- and off-camera. Students also learn how to prepare as an actor and tackle creative projects like how to develop a dynamic character.

Acting: Stage & Screen

Ages 6-8, 9-12
GI SS
This class will explore the differences between how we share stories through stage and screen, both non-verbally and through text. Students will learn to experiment with emotional and physical character portrayals. Young actors will build their self-confidence, and self-awareness, both on- and off-camera through fun acting exercises, readings, and improvisation.

Voiceover

Ages 10-13
O
From cartoons to commercials, and radio to video games, voiceover is an integral part of an actor’s tool belt. In this class, students learn microphone technique and studio etiquette, and play with character voices as they explore the world of voice acting and see how to bring a script to life.

Film: Commercial Acting

Ages 10-14
GI
From fast food to family cars, commercials are an industry unto themselves. In this fun on-camera acting class, students will discover the world of commercial acting where they will learn to create a character and tell stories through short 30-second ad spots.

Film: Movie Making

Ages 10-14
SS
There is so much that goes into creating a great film: sound, lights, cinematography, acting, and directing; but, at its core, it all comes down to storytelling. Understanding how each art form adds its own artistic expression is key to creating a great film. This class is designed to expand students’ awareness of the different aspects of movie making and to learn how actors can explore ways of shifting, adjusting, and connecting to the work to share a story.

 


Writing

Comedy Writing

Ages 9-12, 13-19
O
Find your funny! Students learn various types of comedy writing, including sketch and stand-up, and study different types of comedy, such as parody, satire, and caricature. Special attention is placed on how to establish premise and how to develop a unique voice in all forms. Participants have daily in-class writing activities and plenty of opportunity to share their work in a supportive environment.

Writing for Film & Theatre

Ages 9-12, 13-16
O
Discover the world of scriptwriting and learn how to create your own work. In this online class, students will explore the difference between writing for theatre and film, with a focus on story and style. Participants will uncover how to open up their creativity through writing and play by crafting their own scenes or monologues to bring their ideas to life on the page.

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