Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre

Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre announces summer theatre camp

Conway Institute of Music

CONWAY—The Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre at the University of Central Arkansas is offering a four-week summer theatre camp for grades 2-12 that will provide students with the opportunity to learn about theatre from professional teaching artists as well as participate in workshops with professional actors with the AST Education Team.

“We have combined all of the theatre education programs we have loved over the years at UCA and AST and have created a robust, dynamic, and meaningful education program that will not only engage students in high-level creative learning but will ultimately be tons of fun,” said Chad Bradford, AST’s managing director.

In addition to classes, students enrolled in the camp will have the opportunity to devise an original theatre piece. Performances for the Summer LAB will be on June 30 and July 1, 2023. All classes and performances will be hosted on the UCA campus.

The AST Education Team will welcome back Emily Swenskie to lead the camp. Swenskie taught for the AST Winter LAB program this past January and February. Swenskie has a Master of Fine Arts in performance and pedagogy from Texas Tech University as well as many years of experience as a teaching artist at theatres like The Paramount Arts Center and the Arkansas Repertory Theatre.

“Numerous studies have shown that theatre education can help students develop empathy, confidence, and public speaking skills,” said Bradford. “The NEA has even stated that students engaged in arts education score higher in other academic areas.”

“My daughter loved this acting class,” said Lisa Ashcraft, a mother of one of the Winter LAB students. “She told me how much she enjoyed playing theatre games, exploring emotions and adored her teachers and classmates. I highly recommend it to any parents with creative kids!”

AST’s new education LAB has also just released its newest virtual learning program, “Macbeth: Light in the Darkness.” The free online program is available on the AST website and allows educators to explore “Macbeth” with the help of professional actors and local educators.

Interested teachers and educators can learn more about educational opportunities by visiting the Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre website at

Anyone interested in the summer theatre campus can visit for more information on how to register their child for classes. Camp dates, times and fees are below:

Parent Meeting
June 1 @ 6:30 p.m.

Camp Dates:

June 5-9
June 12-16
June 19-23
June 26-30

Green Show Dates (High School Only)

June 23–Evening
June 25–Matinee

Final Show/Share Dates (All Age Groups)

June 30–Evening
July 1–Matinee


Grades 2-8 (9 a.m. to noon)
Grades 9-12 (1–4 p.m.)


$700 for first child
$550 per additional child
Early Bird Special: $50 off per child
Early Bird Date: Enroll by May 1 for Early bird discount

UCA community discount (Faculty, Staff & Students): $500 for first child, $350 for each additional student. *Must use a UCA email with registration.*

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