ATP launches theater academy for all ages

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Alpine Theatre Project students rehearse “Shrek the Musical Jr." (Brenda Ahearn photo)

In the largest expansion of its programming in 10 years, Alpine Theatre Project is launching the ATP Academy, a theatre school for local students of all ages.

Theatre classes begin Jan. 8 and take place in the ATP Garage, Alpine Theatre Project’s new base of operations at 6464 Highway 93 South in Whitefish. Classes will be held Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays in the afternoons and evenings.

The ATP Academy is aimed at furthering the principles fostered in past ATP Kids Productions — confidence, creativity, and camaraderie — as well as more advanced theatrical concepts such as scene study, improvisation, characterization, vocal technique, movement and theatre dance. All classes will be presented in a fun and energetic format where a “play” literally means “play.”

“This is a dream of ours that has been building for years,” says ATP Producing Artistic Director, Betsi Morrison, who will teach alongside Co-Founder, Luke Walrath. “Over the past eight years of the ATP Kids productions, we’ve seen a real need in the Valley for year-round theatre instruction. We were just waiting for the right time and place. We see the Academy as the theatrical complement to the other wonderful performing arts classes offered in the Valley.”

The ATP Academy will offer three sessions in 2018: an eight-week winter session Jan. 8 through March 4, a four-week spring session May 7 through June 4, and a six-week fall session Oct. 29 through Dec. 10. Classes and curriculum are organized by grade with the spring session also open to adults.

“The Academy will allow us to have fun learning about creating characters and telling stories,” says Walrath. “It also will allow us to really delve deeper into more serious training including musical theatre, improv, and auditioning, with our older students and even adults.”

The ATP Academy fills out the fourth arm of Alpine Theatre Project’s growing educational mission. Its other programs include its ATP Kids Productions in the spring and fall, and the new Broadway Summer Training Camp and Professional Internship Program in the summer.

Parents and interested students can learn more about the ATP Academy, including class descriptions and tuition by visiting atpwhitefish.org/classes or calling (406) 862-7469.

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