On July 16-20, the Dongrang Youth Art Camp located in Los Angeles, presented classes including Voice in Performance, Body and Live Performance, and Technology for Storytelling. This camp being open for students ages 13- 19, taught very useful skills and lessons regarding performance arts to students both beginners and experienced.
The Voice in Performance class, taught by Bo Young Kwon from Hollywood Musicians Institute, emphasized the study of the vocal instrument using the vocal cords, diaphragms, and tongue placement to create a beautiful sound from our voices. Daily vocal warm ups were led each morning with the assistance of a piano played by Danbi Kim from Seoul Institute of the Arts.
“I think when it was everyone’s first time in the camp, everyone felt shy, but personally I think they were really good at participating,” stated Kwon.
Allen Kim, a senior from La Cañada High School shares his experience as a student attending the art program. “I was interested in joining the camp because I wanted to explore my confidence level and do vocal trainings with other people. [Especially] since performing arts is something I want to pursue in the future, I realized [during camp] that, I need to act normally in and cope with awkward situations”.
The Body and Live Performance and Technology for Storytelling classes were led by Scarlett Kim, the Teaching Artist for Movement and Media. Kim became interested in the arts because she was interested in telling stories therefore making intimate connections with others through performance arts. She defines art as a “language of human connection.”
The Body and Live Performance class focused on using the body as a tool for imagination and acting associated with physical theatre vocabulary such as kinesthetic response, objective, tactic, obstacle, and habit. The Technology for Storytelling class integrated the use of a camera with video in performance letting students explore new media technology creating works of art through storytelling as well.
“Some students came in with fear and not wanting to step out of their comfort zone and personally, I [realized] it’s something others can connect with and understand that students [are trying] something they couldn’t do,” stated Kim. Kim added, “I wanted students to find their own voice as artists. Students were inspired to start making art independently and language to work as a team making [very effective] collaboration and communication skills.”
Senior Minju Cho, shares her experience as a volunteer and broadcast journalist. “This program really helped me to get into detail with the composition, angle and different tones of the camera and just seeing how other people are making relationships. And I thought the movement class was very helpful because it really helped me to see where I should put the camera which mattered in telling the stories.” Cho adds, “First when I came, I was shy and and afraid to meet new people, but in order to be a volunteer leader and have a position as broadcast journalist, I learned that you need to interact with other people and that communication is very important.”
As a student reporter, I learned that collaborating and putting in effort is key to creating an improved piece of art whether that is performance or visual art. Through these exercises and classes, the camp really helped me to feel more confident as well.
A short discussion was held by the end of the one week event for every student to share their experience with what they took away from the program. Many students said that the camp helped to get them out of their comfort zones and let them be more open to try new things. So whether you are experienced or not, I highly recommend that you participate and learn from the Dongrang Youth Art Camp.
Yuna Baek, Grade 11
Sage Hill High School