Katy Geh, mom of three, has a long family history in the arts and has always wanted to pass on the tradition of the arts to her children.

“Arts has brought such pleasure in my life,” she says.

But the Langley parent was surprised how much her son, Patrick, age 6, has grown from taking drama classes at Arts Umbrella South Surrey. At his last class of Confidence Through Drama, Patrick grabbed Katy’s arm and proudly exclaimed, “Mom, come watch my class, the parents can watch!”

Patrick had enthusiasm and confidence in his tone. He bubbled with excitement while showing what he had learned all session in class. Patrick just wanted to perform!

Katy remembers not too long ago how nervous Patrick was – it was his second drama class ever at Arts Umbrella. In previous classes, Patrick had always attended with one or both siblings. As soon as he knew he’d be attending the drama class alone, he clung to Katy for dear life.

“The staff at Arts Umbrella South Surrey was amazing. They went beyond the expected to get Patrick to take part. They were wonderful and sat in the class, so I didn’t have to, to make him comfortable. They had ideas and suggestions, and figured out a plan to help.”

The drama class has been life changing in Katy’s mind: “Now he goes in and doesn’t have that fear anymore.”

Since the age of two, Patrick has looked up to his older brother and trailed around him. Patrick’s twin sister also has a strong personality.

“The class has allowed Patrick to work on his independence, lessen his dependence on his siblings, and become more confident, says Katy. “So much of his identity was through his siblings.”

Katy reflects, “I put Patrick into an arts class to have the opportunity to experience what I experienced with the arts growing up. Having him begin to develop his own identity is not a road I’d expect to be on through the arts.”