Summer Youth Drama Acting Camp FAQ

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Summer Intensive FAQ

About the BAYFEST Summer Intensive

Founded in 1990, the BAYFEST International Youth Theatre Summer Drama Camp intensive includes professional-level classes, workshops and rehearsals for a play, musical or company-devised production directed by professional directors, choreographers, designers, and other guest teachers.

Classes and rehearsals are generally from 8:30AM – 3:30PM, six days a week, with a lunch break, with public performances at various venues in the last week of the program. This is a very rigorous training and performance program but it certainly includes LOTS of fun, including a variety of civic, press, sightseeing, and social events, going to see professional theatre and several dinners/parties.

Many friendships have been forged in the hard-working atmosphere of BAYFEST that have continued for decades, and each year there are a number of mini “reunions” around the US and UK. BAYFEST seeks to involve the participants in every aspect of theatre from rehearsal to performance. All participants must be available for the entire program.

As always, housing for out-of-town participants is with host families — a wonderful part of the cultural exchange of the program. Whenever possible, we place out-of-town participants with local program participants, and host families are invited to participate in a number of BAYFEST events.

Many of our alumni have gone on to some of the world’s most prestigious drama schools, including:

RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art)
Stanford
LAMDA (London Academy for Music and Dramatic Art)
NYU Tisch School of the Arts
Leeds
Boston University
USC
Northwestern
…and others.

Plenty of former BAYFESTers have wonderful careers on stage as well as film/TV, though many come to BAYFEST knowing they will pursue other careers, and we hear constantly that the BAYFEST experience was a terrific influence on their lives.  Feedback from previous BAYFESTers can be found on our Summer Intensive Testimonials page.

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Where has BAYFEST been in residence?

BAYFEST’s summer intensive programs have been held all over the US and UK:  some of the places where we have been in residence include New York, London, Washington, DC, Vermont, Seattle, Newcastle on Tyne, North Wales, Los Angeles, San Diego, California, and, Sandpoint, Idaho.  All participants are together for the entire program, which sometimes has included international travel.

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What kind of productions has BAYFEST done?

BAYFEST productions have been performed in a variety of theatre venues, including large and small indoor theatres, parks, summer festivals and even, on occasion, at private homes. These have included a number of Shakespeare productions (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo and Juliet, The Winter’s Tale), the musical Working, a masked commedia version of Goldoni’s The Servant of Two Masters, a program of American short stories, The Rake’s Progress, and many company-devised pieces including When Dreams May Come, a devised piece about dreams and nightmares that went on to have several more productions.  Almost all productions are filled with lots of movement (including dance, circus skills, clowning, and stage combat) and all are professionally costumed.

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Who is a typical BAYFEST participant?

BAYFEST participants have a range of previous theatre-training experience, from those who attend Arts High Schools or have performed professionally to those who have not yet had the opportunity for formal training. The main things that link all participants are a love of performing, being willing to work really hard, having a great attitude, and a desire to be a part of a truly life-changing cultural and ensemble experience.

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How do I apply to the BAYFEST Summer Intensive?

Please download the 2017 application HERE, which you can return by regular mail or email.

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How much does BAYFEST cost?

The cost for the BAYFEST 2017 3 week Summer program is $1475 (approx. £1200) for the full program, which includes local host-family housing, and all group social and entertainment events in addition to all program activities. The program fee does not include round-trip (return) transportation to the Seattle, WA area, though there are some need-based scholarship funds to help defray travel expenses. There is no application fee, however accepted students will be asked to submit a $250 deposit to secure their place in the program. The deposit will be refunded if full scholarship is granted.

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Why are fees for the BAYFEST Summer Intensive so low, compared with many other summer drama programs?

The training participants receive at BAYFEST is among the most professional and rigorous available.  However, one of our goals since our inception is to encourage young performers from a wide variety of areas and backgrounds to apply. To that end, we have always set the cost for the BAYFEST program much lower than many of the summer drama camps and programs around the US.  We are able to do this with the support of our generous donors, including many former BAYFESTers!

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Does BAYFEST offer scholarship assistance / financial aid?

Yes! BAYFEST has direct, need-based scholarship grants, and fundraising assistance is available. We are proud that in our 26-year history we have been able to help all accepted participants find the necessary funding from a variety of sources, including direct scholarships, local grants and targeted fundraising. Please let us know on the application form that you would like to apply for financial aid and we will get you the forms immediately. Applying for financial aid does not affect acceptance decisions.

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Is there an application fee?

No, there is no application fee. However, once you have been accepted into the summer program, you will be required to pay a deposit of $250 to secure your place in the ensemble.

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Why do I have to pay a deposit?

Due to the small number (23 max) of places in the BAYFEST Summer program, participants are asked to submit a $250 deposit to secure their place in the ensemble. The deposit will be put towards the balance of the fees and can be refunded if full scholarship is granted.

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How do I pay the deposit and fees?

You may do so online via our Fees page. Or, you may send check or money order to:

4050 20TH AVE, SW, STE B, SEATTLE, WA 98106, USA

All payments will be acknowledged by email.

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Who can participate in BAYFEST?

Applicants must be between 15 and 19 years of age and cannot have attended University or post-high school college. We do accept mature 14-year-olds, but usually only if they live close to where the program will be in residence.

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Do I have to audition or prepare a monologue?

Yes. All applicants who cannot attend a local in-person audition date are required to submit their audition by video. In-person workshop auditions will be held in select locations, and applicants will be notified once we receive their application. For more information, see Auditions. Up to 23 participants will be chosen by audition from all locations combined.

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Who is a typical BAYFEST participant?

BAYFEST participants have a range of previous theatre-training experience, from those who attend Arts High Schools or have performed professionally to those who have not yet had the opportunity for formal training, or know already that they do not plan to go into performing as a career, but love doing it. The main things that link all participants are a love of performing, being willing to work really hard, having a great attitude, and a desire to be a part of a truly life-changing cultural and ensemble experience. BAYFEST ensembles include members from a wide range of ethnic, economic and cultural backgrounds and it is the experience of really getting to know peers from very different places and backgrounds that is always one of the most rewarding parts of the program.

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Where will I stay during the summer program?

Housing for out-of-town participants will be with host families. Whenever possible, we place out-of-town participants with local program participants. The host family experience can be one of the most important parts of the program, and many participants have stayed in touch and visited their host families for years after BAYFEST

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I’m not British, American, or Canadian: can I still apply to BAYFEST?

Applicants from outside the US, Canada, or Great Britain, including those whose first language is not English, are encouraged to apply. However participants must speak English well enough to perform and receive instruction in English.

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