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After-school acting program tries to help kids get motivated – Toronto

TORONTO – Lights, camera, action! Three words young actors with the Streetwise Actors program hope to hear as part of their futures.

But for now, the bunch continues to participate in the free after-school program, a weekly initiative created to keep kids get motivated and on the right track.

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“Really what it’s about is increasing self-esteem, self respect and respect for other people,” founder of Streetwise Actors David Nash said.  “To give them something to do which is good for them, other than the sort of behaviours, as a society, we really don’t want them to indulge in.”

Through Streetwise Actors, people between the ages of 11 and 18 learn transferable skills that go beyond basic acting tips, something young actor and aspiring director Edward Mines can attest to.

“Well, I’ve certainly become a lot more confident and I’d to say I’ve become better working with a team, collaborating with people and also, become more of a leader,” Mines said.

In an effort to raise these confidence and creativity levels, participants produce a number of skits and plays for the enjoyment of friends, family, and older adult audiences in local long-term care facilities and retirement homes.

“Some of them haven’t interacted with children for years, and to see them brighten up when the kids come into the room is fantastic,” Nash said.

For other participants like Samantha Rideout, Streetwise Actors has helped her feel comfortable in her own skin, something that wasn’t possible before joining the program.

“I feel more open and confident on stage.  I can actually feel like myself,” Rideout said.  “I’ve just made so many friends here, more than at school, and I really, truly feel accepted because I don’t feel accepted in many places.”

Interested participants are welcome to join Streetwise Actors on an ongoing basis.  For more information on the program, all inquiries can be sent to [email protected]苏州纹眉学校