Michael Green is hosting his Shoals Community Theatre theater classes again this year. The classes provide an opportunity for local Thespians to sharpen their skills. There’s also something for beginners who want to test the waters of local theater.
Green has been involved in local and regional theater for years and received degrees in theater and journalism from the University of North Alabama.
“I’ve been involved in theater for 30 years in one capacity or another,” he said.
Two 16-week semesters are offered each year — spring and fall — and are open to adults of all ages and youth as young as 8.
The next semester starts Monday.
Some students come for a semester and may skip the next semester and come the next year, depending on their school or work or other activities, Green said.
“Don’t think if you miss a semester it kind of messes you up or something,” Green said. “Because each semester is unique to itself.
“We don’t usually continue anything in the next semester. I like to start all over.”
Green offers beginning classes and more advanced classes, along with separate classes focused on acting, musical theater, scene design and playwriting. Green said there won’t be any musical theater sneaking into acting, or any acting sneaking into play writing — and each category will offer beginner and advanced classes.
“Depending on who the students are and stuff, things change,” Green said. “I always try to keep things challenging for students.
“The beginning classes I treat it like they have never done anything before, and we start from scratch. But the ones who have been there for a while in the advance classes, I look for ways to challenge them and stretch them.”
Leesa Barber, a Florence resident who does local community theater and is on the board of the Gingerbread Players, has been taking the SCT theater classes since Green started teaching them in 2010.
She said she started taking the classes to improve her technique and confidence when she auditions.
When her oldest daughter, Elizabeth, turned 8, she registered her for classes as well.
“My oldest is very shy and cautious about new situations, and it has really brought her out of her shell,” Barber said of her daughter, who is now 10. “It has been really fun to watch her blossom in that area.
“In her first audition she was really reserved,” she said. “She has come a long way.”
Few people who do theater are going to be able to go and make a career out of it, Green said. But that doesn’t stop theater as being an excellent teaching tool and activity for kids.
“Parents see it as a way for them to build confidence, self-esteem and to not be afraid to get up in front of people,” Green said. “And have that kind of confidence to express themselves and have confidence in who they are and what they can do.”
Bobby Bozeman can be reached at 256-740-5722 or bobby.bozeman@TimesDaily.com.