Monday, June 28, 2010

Happy Camper

Last week Wynn went to theatre arts camp at the Children's Theatre Company. In short, she had a blast. It was an absolute duck-to-water situation as she and her fellow campers took classic children's songs and acted them out. We've always known that she's an adept mimic and a bit of a goofball; theatre camp was a place where someone with this particular skill set can shine. And shine she did.

Each class ended with a ten-minute performance for the parents. By week's end, every man, woman, and child in that room knew what animal Wynn was going to choose to be, no matter the song: a gecko.

She'd come home each day and act out highlights of that day for her Baba, always taking a deep and sincere bow at the end - and waiting for the applause to subside before standing up.

My favorite thing from the week was when they taught her the three tools people in the theatre have in their toolbox: the body, the voice, and the imagination. Of course, she has a fantastically-elaborate way of explaining this concept, complete with gestures and dramatic shifts of intonation. I just love seeing this little cleft-palate, speech-therapy girl talking with such enthusiasm about the importance of her voice. Beyond the sheer fun and confidence-building of the week, I think camp really added another layer to her motivation to keep working hard on her articulation.

One happy consequence of theatre camp was that, due to its late-afternoon dismissal time, it forced Wynn and me to go out for dinner every night last week. We started out small with a McDonald's Happy Meal, but things improved greatly as the week ran its course. Wynn had a yummy sandwich at the cafe in the Institute of Arts, tried some sushi (thanks to Uncle Paul) at Obento-ya, and downed half a mango smoothie at the ChinDian Cafe. By Friday, she was thoroughly spoiled and responded to my suggestion that we just grab some tacos with a whiny, "Awww, I want to go to a real restaurant." We may have created a monster here, but at least it's one with good taste.

There are other camps at the Children's Theatre this summer, and Wynn has told me, "Sign me up," but we have to wait to hear from her surgeon whether or not she'll need an operation this summer before we can sign her up for anything fun. We go in tomorrow morning for another camera-up-the-nose assessment. Fingers crossed.

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