by Stormy Edwards, Camp ZinZanni Coordinator
July 21, 2008 – Welcome to Camp ZinZanni!
On February 6th, 2008, an idea was born. That idea was put into the hands of a small group of people. Those people were given the task of making that idea grow.
Today, it bore its first fruit. And that fruit was amazing.
Final preparations for Teatro ZinZanni’s first summer camp began at about 7:30 this morning, with our camp staff and counselors. Campers began lining up outside the doors shortly after 8am and Sergiy Krutikov treated them to some accordion music while they waited.
From the moment the doors opened to the moment they closed at 3pm, it was a remarkable day, and definitely a learning process for us all.
There were a handful of highly skilled jugglers of all ages mixed into a group of absolute beginners. I spent the morning watching them work with Sergiy and with their counselors on a variety of instruments – balls, clubs, rings, and scarves. I enjoyed talking to the kids as they practiced, seeing what they had developed over the course of the morning. One entire group perfected a trick with two rings. Another moved on to passing clubs. The third group held some of the shortest and best ball jugglers in the tent. Kids who had never met become fast friends within the first hour.
It was incredible to watch.
And then we turned them on their heads. Literally. Once Doloreze Leonard took over in the afternoon, the kids were asked to perform, to be a stove, a giraffe, a lung. Some of the kids that were learning slowly in the juggling session became the masters of character creation. Some kids, too shy to perform on their own, became leaders within their group performances. The counselors all worked right alongside the kids, encouraging and proving by example that there is no such thing as too silly for the circus.
I cannot wait to see what these kids develop with Sergiy and Dolo this week, as jugglers, as characters, and as teammates.
Tomorrow, we throw Peter Pitofsky into the mix. I’m already giggling in anticipation of what these kids will do when the “Human Cartoon” arrives in their midst. Stay tuned…..