Anne Marie's Australian Adventure

Follow the Adventures of Anne Marie, Fergus, Cooper and Bean Sidhe in Australia!!

Canberra Youth Theatre

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on July 22, 2008

I got the job! I will be what they call a tutor. It’s part time. One class will be at my local primary school (that’s what they call a middle school, college is high school and uni is university). The schools throughout the city contract with CYT to have a tutor come out once a week and teach a drama class. It so happens that she needed someone for the Turner school so I can easily walk there. This class is really a beginning acting – theatre games, pantomime and storytelling – much of what I did with my Drama 1 classes at the high school. At the end of the semester the students put on a little program for their parents.

The other assignment is to co-teach  a class on Melodrama at the CYT center. This group is the 13 – 25 age group. The parents pay for the kids to take part in a variety of acting and technical theatre workshops offered each semester. I will teaching kids who want to take drama and whose parents are motivated to keep them attending. The melodrama class should be fun. Again at the end of the semester they will perform a short melodrama for parents and friends. This class is also on Thursdays after school. The CYT has it’s own theatre building where they rehearse and perform.

Pip said that she rarely has discipline problems because the students really enjoy being involved. One of the groups is the Ensemble group. This is a group of students who have taken classes at the center before. They audition to be in the ensemble group and then they do a full blown production. They rehearse on Saturdays from 10 to 4. The public pays to see their productions and from what I hear they do some really outstanding work.

CYT is funded not only by enrollment fees but also my the federal and state arts councils. Pip also applies for grants. She recently got a grant to create a new work for the Ensemble group to perform. Pip had just cast the show at the beginning of the week and they were going to have their first rehearsal on Saturday. Since it would be their first read through I asked if I could volunteer to help with this play so that I could get to know more about how the organization works, meet more students and help with anything she might need. It just so happen that this week the playwright, Ross Mueller from Melbourne, the set and costume designer, Tobhiyah Feller from Sydney were going to be there. Toby and Ross are professionals (young but successful – Ross has written many plays and Toby has a design studio in Sydney).

Toby presented her costume  and set designs to the cast – a group of about thirteen 16 to 22 year olds and one 10 year old girl. I will try to get photos once the set is built. During the read through, Ross and Pip continued to make small revisions to the work. The play is an adaptation of a young adults novel called “The Messenger” by Markus Zusak a popular Australian novelist. The group did the read through and I was impressed with many of these young actors. On Sunday they did a mini read through presentation to an audience of arts council members, sponsors and parents. Pip gave a short presentation on the process thus far, the cast read scenes one through five, Ross discussed the writing process and the audience asked questions. It was a wonderful afternoon. When Pip introduced the key players, Ross, Toby, Sharon the office manager, Lonnie the stage manager, and the sound designer, she also introduced me as the center’s newest tutor and her assistant director for this play. I’m finally beginning to be a part – even if it’s only a bit part. Learn more about CYT .

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3 Responses to “Canberra Youth Theatre”

  1. Chris said

    Sounds perfect for you. Make sure you have time for the great trips though! The beach looks great! Nothing better in my opinion. Thanks for posting.

  2. Zack said

    Haha, why doesn’t that sound like a shock. Its kind of cool your able to do that… I’ve been meaning to tell you Cameron is going to wsu, to do programing and tech theater, and Im going to coffeyville (on a theater scholarship, yay!) Doing Tech stuff and getting all my basic classes.

    Hope to see those pictures. 🙂

  3. Maranda said

    Congratulations Anne Marie! That sounds totally perfect for you. I’m glad things are going well. We miss you lots!

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