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Stars KIDS Drama Camp in Sunriver prepares students for the big stage

Sunriver Stars

SUNRIVER, Ore. (KTVZ) – It’s been a busy week in Sunriver, with parents, directors, actors and teachers coming together for a common cause, “Teaching Kids to S.H.I.N.E. in Theater Arts.”

Sunriver Stars Community Theater treated area children to a week of professional theater training as part of the fourth Stars KIDS Drama Camp. Children also spent time with several SSCT actors who prepped them for the possibility of participating in the Stars’ full-scale production of “Oz!” coming October 14-16.

“It has been a pleasure directing Stars KIDS,” said Camp Director Vreyah Palmantier. “I love doing these camps, bringing so many talented artists together and watching children grow in their stage knowledge and confidence in just a week is priceless.”

Children learned songs from the upcoming musical for the roles of munchkins, poppies and flying monkeys with direction from La Pine voice instructor, Peniel Flake, and Ovation Performing Arts Director, Jonathan Shepherd.

Choreography was created by Kelly Breen of Central Oregon Dancers Elite in La Pine, and taught with the assistance of parent, Alyssa Rainy, and SSCT member, Rich Mundy.

The program included training in various elements of performing arts, visual art instruction, games and drama technique lessons, and students were encouraged in the development of positive character traits, such as honor and enthusiasm, as part of the acronymic theme. All will be presented in a free finale showcase at 4 p.m. Saturday at The Door Three Rivers.

Following the showcase, it’s off to see the wizard! The show has been cast and rehearsals are underway for the Stars 10th anniversary celebration production of “Oz!” The dazzling musical, based on the classic story by L. Frank Baum, will feature children from the camp as well as teens and adult actors.

Youth who still wish to be involved have one more chance, as additional munchkins, poppies and flying monkeys will be cast. Those interested should attend an audition at 6 p.m. September 12 in suite 208 of the Village Properties building in Sunriver Business Park, 56835 Venture Ln.

The musical tells a familiar story from the timeless “Wizard of Oz” tale, with a few not so well-known characters and scenes.

A cyclone carries Dorothy and Toto to the magical land of Oz.  When Dorothy’s house squashes the Wicked Witch of the East, she is ecstatically thanked by the liberated munchkins and given permission to wear the witch’s powerful slippers.  From there, Baum’s lovable characters — rubber-legged Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, and Tin Woodsman — join Dorothy on a fantastical journey to meet the great Oz. 

The cast features children as young as 3, and as mature as 87, with real-life dog, Kenda, as Toto and her owner, Ron Pugh, playing the Cowardly Lion. Vocal coach Rae White will lend her incredible voice to the role of Dorothy. Tickets will be available online starting Sept. 11 at

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