Today's Paper Obits Digital FAQ Newsletters Coronavirus Cancellations NWA Screening Sites Virus Interactive Map Coronavirus FAQ Crime Razorback Sports Today's Photos Puzzles
story.lead_photo.caption Arts Live Theatre is taking its decades-long history of youth theater training online for families who find themselves quarantined to avoid covid-19. )NWA Democrat-Gazette/DAVID GOTTSCHALK) NWA Democrat-Gazette/DAVID GOTTSCHALK Mallory Harris, 11, pretends to paint a painting Monday, June 24, 2019, as she participates in the Broadway Now Musical Theater Camp at Arts Live Theartre in Fayetteville, Students in the half-day week long camp, for grades 5-8, will perform music and choreography from current musicals including Wicked, Aladdin and Anastasia. The afternoon session is for grades 8-12.

Self-quarantining is difficult, but self-quarantining with children in the house -- and no end in sight -- can be a special kind of challenge.

Enter, stage left: Arts Live Theatre, to the rescue!


Go Online!

Find both Arts Live Theatre projects on their website at

"I was trying to think of a way to keep kids engaged and creative," explains Arts Live Executive Director Mark Landon Smith. So he put out a call for submissions from school-age kids to create their own videos.

"I thought this would be a really fun way for them to express themselves. The idea is that the kids will produce a 90-second video. It can be them doing a dance, reading a script, doing a monologue, designing something [then] emailing the footage to us. We'll edit those submissions into several episodes that are 10 minutes long, put it on our social media pages and let people see what the kids are creating."

Smith says that they'll continue to edit episodes as long as kids continue to send in video clips.

But that's not the only creative project Smith has devised for parents desperate for activities. He also created a virtual academy that kids can access through the organization's website.

"Every couple of days, we'll have a script for kids to read," says Smith. Take, for example, "Alice in Wonderland," which is the script kids can work on right now. "We have a link to a YouTube video showing kids how to do a British accent, links to costume templates, the kids can design a prop -- they get a full experience on what it's like to design a show."

Both projects are free, says Smith, and designed to be done without the supervision of a parent.

"It's a double service -- helps kids stay artistic and [tries] to keep everything easy to navigate so kids can do it themselves.

"When kids are in school, they get access to the arts through their theater or choir or art classes," Smith says. "When they're out of school, it's not so easy to access these subject areas. We want to keep kids communicating and in touch with each other."

NAN What's Up on 03/22/2020

Print Headline: Theater To Go

Sponsor Content


COMMENTS - It looks like you're using Internet Explorer, which isn't compatible with our commenting system. You can join the discussion by using another browser, like Firefox or Google Chrome.
It looks like you're using Microsoft Edge. Our commenting system is more compatible with Firefox and Google Chrome.