This summer, thanks to a Show-Score contest that my mom won, I was able to attend a weeklong session at Camp Broadway, and it was the highlight of my year. I was very nervous at first, since it would be my first time traveling to New York City by myself. However, the second I stepped foot off the bus at Port Authority, I felt comfortable and at home.
Me waiting for the two hour bus ride to NYC from PA every morning | Photo by Sue Derner
The moment I arrived at Camp Broadway, in fact, I was greeted with warm, welcoming smiles. Everyone was so kind and helpful. I was directed to the rest of my group and made friends instantly. It was so wonderful to hear where everyone was from. Every camper was from a different part of the world. I even became good friends with a girl from Australia! (I didn’t even mind taking the bus in from Pennsylvania every morning. I just couldn’t wait to get back to camp.)
Isaak, my camp counselor, greeted me with a smile and made me feel very welcome. We then did a warm up and started to learn choreography. All of the instructors were very helpful and made learning the material fun and easy. They were understanding when we did not fully grasp something at first and were patient as we learned the music and choreography for our version of “Shrek the Musical.”
We continued to learn everything until Wednesday. when we took a break to see “Anastasia” on Broadway. I had such an amazing time being able to experience a Broadway show with my new friends. We were also able to have a talk back with the cast of “Anastasia” after the show, which was such an unforgettable experience.
We spent Thursday finishing up rehearsals. Finally being able to put together all of our hard work to make a show in just four days was so amazing. Throughout the week, I received many words of advice. I not only learned more about theater, but also about teamwork and collaboration. I will never forget the things I've learned and the people I've meet during Camp Broadway. It was such an inspiring week, and I'm so thankful that I was able to attend.
Our production of "Shrek" | Photo by Sue Derner
So what’s next?
I will be a senior at Nazareth HS in PA this year, and soon I will begin the audition process for college musical theater programs.
That wasn’t always my goal, but my experiences at Camp Broadway made me realize that performing is my passion, and studying in New York City is now my dream. I plan to apply to Pace University and Fordham University and hopefully a few other schools. I am so excited for what the future holds.