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Sisters explore Theatre Victoria's summer camp

Camille Doty

By Camille Doty
June 7, 2012 at 1:07 a.m.
Updated June 8, 2012 at 1:08 a.m.

Madison Firth, 8, rehearses with the cast of "The Jungle Book, Kids" during Theatre Victoria's Triple Threat Academy Summer Camp on Thursday at the Leo J. Welder Center for the Performing Arts. Madison's sister, Ebony, is also a member of the camp and will be performing "Winnie the Pooh, Kids" with the other half of the camp on Saturday.

Madison and Ebony Firth compete like most sisters.

But on Saturday, they will support each other during their Theatre Victoria debut.

The doting sisters, who attend Schorlemmer Elementary School, on Thursday jokingly debated who would have more success.

"See, I'm already a national superstar," said Madison, 8. "That's OK, I'll be there someday," said her older sister.

The Firth sisters are among 75 children participating in Theatre Victoria's T3: Triple Threat Theatre Summer Camp.

Employees and volunteers work with the children to help them develop their singing, acting and dancing skills.

The Headliners Camp, which involves children between the ages of 9 and 18, began on Monday.

Students receive instruction in the morning and rehearse in the afternoon until the curtain call.

The children started auditioning Monday because everyone has a part.

This year's productions are "Winnie the Pooh, Kids" and "The Jungle Book, Kids," which are 30-minute versions of the popular Disney productions.

Next week, the Stars of Tomorrow group will have kids who are between 4 and 8 years old meet in the morning. Their week will conclude with a talent showcase.

Camp Director Michael Teer asks the budding thespians to fill out a questionnaire so organizers and campers can understand their goals.

Some aspire to become famous actresses; others want to gain confidence.

Teer wants every child to thrive.

"We're teaching these kids the greatest thing, that is to see them shine," he said.

Theater students put their collaborative nature aside when they partake in the T3 Olympics.

Each team vies for the coveted goblet. This year, David beat Goliath. Madison and Ebony's group, the youngest competitors, beat the junior and senior high school students.

Skylar Anderson, friend of the Firth sisters, said her group likely won because of their enthusiasm.

"I was going to do a cartwheel split, but not on those rocks," she said. The flexible 9-year-old opted to do just a regular flip instead.

"I'm having lots of fun and I'm glad to be here," said Skylar, a student at Trinity Episcopal School.

"It's my first time and I have to agree with you," Ebony responded.

The kids got back into character to perform at the Children's Discovery Museum on Thursday afternoon.

Madison earned the part of Shanti in "The Jungle Book, Kids." She said the theater had the right idea assigning everyone roles, "If we got to choose our own parts, it would be chaos."

Ebony received one of the narrator roles and a part of the animal chorus in "Winnie the Pooh, Kids."

Madison said it was advantageous to be in separate plays.

"I don't have my older sister telling me what to do," she said.

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