Improv allows kids to ham it up

A new slate of improvisational acting classes will start June 14 and run for 12 weeks at the Children’s Discovery Museum in Kapa‘a and the Kilauea Parish Hall.

Taught by Derek Green, a founding member of the Whole World Theater and Whole World Children’s Theater in Atlanta, the classes are designed for kids seeking an exciting and challenging way to play.

“These classes are designed to explore the minds and imaginations of these actors,” Green said.

“Actors get a simple set-up like who they are, where they are, and what they are doing. It is the actors responsibility to create a world with their partner through scene work.”

Green, who has directed the Kauai Comedy Improv troupe for the past four years, said each scene lasts between two and four minutes and is based on audience suggestion.

“The response to these classes have been outstanding,” he said. “So many parents have contacted me about new classes that I have decided to hold four more this summer.”

Green, who has been working with 10- to 14-year-olds for the past two months, teaches a concept of “no judgment and complete acceptance,” meaning the actors can do no wrong on stage.

“I created these classes to give the youth of Kaua‘i an alternative to the activities available to them,” Green said. “Improvisational acting trains an individual to gain confidence, self awareness and trust in others all in a fun, interactive environment.”

Green also spent the past two summers teaching at the Kauai Academy of Creative Arts, as well as a facilitating a course for a group of home-schooled students.

For his latest project, Green is quick to hand out thanks.

“I couldn’t have done it without the generosity from Rick Boal,” he said. “Rick set up a scholarship fund for any kids that couldn’t afford the class. Because of his help, five students were able to attend.”

Two first-level classes will be at the Children’s Discovery Museum in Kapa‘a, and one first-level class will be at the Parish Hall in Kilauea. Green said there will be a second-level course taught in Kilauea as well.

For more information on classes or to inquire about creating a scholarship fund, contact Derek Green at 652-0477 or derekgreenkauai@yahoo.com.

• Ford Gunter, associate editor, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 224) or fgunter@kauaipubco.com.

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