Did you know that Kitsap
Childrens Musical Theatre (KCMT) has been providing local youth
with a positive, professional environment to learn about and
perform in musical theater for more than 10 years?
The mission of the non-profit, all-volunteer organization is to
be available to all young people who want to participate,
regardless of background or financial standing. The theater group
produces three shows a year in addition to running a very popular
But KCMT takes it further… As a parent
of children involved in KCMT, I have seen something especially
wonderful about this “all-volunteer” program. Many of these
volunteers are teens. They comprise the invaluable “teen staff”
component of KCMT. These teens are taught and mentored not only in
theater-involved responsibilities, but in skills that will benefit
them as adults.
[photo credit: Scott
Teen staffers are given the privilege of responsibility, and of
ownership in key parts of each KCMT production. There are times I
have had questions about a show. My questions will often be
directed to the teen in charge. It’s their job.
Sara Adams, the director of the upcoming production of 101
Dalmatians said these teen staff members put in as many hours as
she – often up to 1,000 hours of volunteer time per production!
In return for their time, they get experience and Sara Adams
fills out many-a-recommendation letter. The teens are regarded as a
vital piece of the
creative machine that is KCMT.
An example of this mentorship is the 101 Dalmatians teen staff
photographer, Lauren Wolbaum. Scott Sorenson, the
main KCMT photographer for many years has been been mentoring
Lauren as she develops her skill as a photographer. She IS the 101
Dalmatians cast photographer. This is Lauren in action…
You can see Lauren’s 101 Dalmatians
photography here, and below:
It would be easy to farm out the many responsibilities to
parents. However, the leaders of KCMT value and recognize the
skills and potential of our local young people… the potential our
teens have, and the potential this opportunity grows in the future
of these talented young people. Teens who had started as chorus
actors are now choreographing numbers for current shows, checking
in and tracking the 100 children as they walk through rehearsal
doors 3 days a week, writing original scripts for the very popular
summer camp, and play a huge role in running the backstage… the
list is long.
All of this – right here in our own backyard! There are so many
positive and good things are being planted and nurtured in our
children and teens through KCMT.
We began our journey with the group because my daughter saw
Willy Wonka… years later we are deeply rooted. It is exciting and
encouraging as a parent – to watch teens positively impact my
children, and to know there is a positive place right where we live
where my children can learn and grow.
Tickets are available for 101 Dalmations! Show opens the weekend
of April 8th and runs through the following weekend. Visit KCMT.org for information on how to
tickets or how to get involved!
– Jenny is a scattered mom of 3 who loves to dance, spray
glitter, and dreams of
being famous… You can read more about Jenny at her blog
Jenny On The Spot,
where she has been telling tales of maternal defeat and digression
since 2004. You can also find her on Twitter.