Thursday, August 1, 2013

FAMILY FUN MONTH: Rockin' Mama on Children and the Arts

By Caryn Bailey of Rockin' Mama

Growing up as an only child in Los Angeles, a city that is as vast as it is diverse, I had seemingly endless opportunities and experiences to be exposed to art, culture, and entertainment. I remember sitting inside our local theater for the very first time, wide-eyed with wonder and swept up in the beauty and emotion of the talented cast of 42nd Street. From there, I developed a passion for the arts, particularly musical theater, and have seen some of the most legendary productions performed in theaters all over the world. 

My children saw their first Broadway production before they turned five and my hope is that early exposure to the arts will inspire their own creativity and passions. Here are three ways children benefit from exposure to the arts. 

Ta'Rea Campbell, Alysha Deslorieux and Trisha Jeffrey in SISTER ACT
Photo by Joan Marcus
1. The pursuit of undiscovered talents. Children have an innate sense of creativity that must be fostered at an early age. Exposure to music, dance, and theater can inspire children to take a class or participate in a school production. 

2. Exposure to educational opportunities not replicated inside of a classroom. Classroom education is only a part of what helps a child grow and mature into their own person. Live theatrical productions offer children the opportunity to explore new places and cultures through music and dance. Similarly, many productions are period-based, exposing children to history in a way that is visual and meaningful. 

3. Unique family bonding opportunities. Some of the best family experiences are those that happen after the production where lively discussions can take place. Very often these productions have themes and messages that parents can then discuss with their children long after the curtain has closed. 

Cast of SISTER ACT. Photo by Joan Marcus
There are still plenty of summer days left for families to head out to the theater! Segerstrom Center for the Arts will offer three free performances on August 3rd as a celebration of their award-winning program Summer at the Center. And on August 6th, SISTER ACT debuts at the Center. Broadway's musical comedy is based on the 1992 film and features original music by Alan Menken, whose work includes Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid. This family-friendly show is a remarkable testament to the power of friendship and will have audiences young and old on their feet!

In celebration of August being Family Fun Month, the Center is delighted to share stories by some of Orange County’s favorite family bloggers. Speaking of Family Fun, the Broadway musical SISTER ACT will be in town from August 6-18.

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1 comment:

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