Theater
Kids sitting on stage and laughing at Theater Camp on Long Island, NY
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Summer Theater Camp on Long Island

 

 

Summer Acting Programs for Kids in New York

Usdan’s Theater Department is committed to educational excellence and promoting wonder and understanding in the world. Students perform in a full theatrical production and/or focus on specific skills, including acting, singing,  physical movement, and auditioning. No matter the class, all Theater students receive instruction from experienced theater educators, professional actors, and directors. 

Experienced students are invited to join The Ensemble or The Usdan Troupe, each of which lasts 8 weeks and presents a fully staged musical production at the end of the summer. 

Recent full productions across Theater Majors include: Frozen, Titanic, Aladdin, Les Misérables, Cinderella, Matilda, and Cats.  

Theater students perform on one of Usdan’s state-of-the-art stages, including the Lucy Moses Theater, the Black Box Theater, and the Hillside Theater. Theater Department performance stages as well as the majority of rehearsal studios are open-air, with one to three sides exposed to the surrounding beauty of our wooded campus.  

 

Summer Camp Busing for Long Island, NYC, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens Kids

For over fifty years, Usdan has offered an enriching arts, musictheater, creative writing and dance summer camp experience to children all over the region, from Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn in New York City, to Port Washington and Huntington, and all over Nassau and Suffolk counties. Usdan offers busing to and from camp from convenient central pickup locations. For more information on busing, please visit our Transportation page

Classes

Performance: Children’s Theater

Available for
  • 4-Week A
  • 4-Week B
Major classes
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Performance: Musical Theater

Available for
  • 4-Week A
  • 4-Week B
Major classes
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Performance: Our Little Theater - NEW

Available for
  • 4-Week B
Major classes
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Performance: The Actor's Group

Available for
  • 4-Week A
Major classes
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Performance: The Ensemble

Available for
  • 8-Week
Major classes
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Performance: The Usdan Troupe

Available for
  • 8-Week
Major classes
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Theater Skills: Improvisation & Theater Games

Available for
  • 4-Week A
  • 4-Week B
Minor classes
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Theater Skills: The Actor Sings

Available for
  • 4-Week A
  • 4-Week B
Minor classes
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Performance: Children’s Theater

4-Week A

Major: Grades 2–3
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

4-Week B

Major: Grades 2–3
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

Children’s Theater allows young campers with stage-door dreams to explore theatrical and musical interpretation. Nurturing both singing and acting skills, this unforgettable experience provides foundational instruction for our youngest thespians as they prepare to perform a musical chosen especially for them. Usdan’s musical theater productions are led by two lead faculty members, one director and one musical director, who are professional theater educators specializing in directing and music directing. Classes take place in open-air studios with at least one side exposed to Usdan’s beautiful, wooded campus. All levels of theatrical experience are welcome.

 

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Performance: Musical Theater

4-Week A

Major: Grades 4–12
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

4-Week B

Major: Grades 4–12
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

An opportunity to study musical theater through the entire cycle of a production, including audition, rehearsal, blocking, staging, choreography, ensemble work, and performance. Over the course of four weeks, students audition for roles and learn how casting decisions are made, discover the joys of collaboration, and develop responsibility as they work together to put on their show. Usdan’s musical theater productions are led by two lead faculty members, one director and one musical director, who are professional theater educators specializing in directing and music directing. The majority of rehearsals take place in open-air studios with at least one side exposed to Usdan’s beautiful, wooded campus. Classes are grouped according to age division and grade. All levels of theatrical experience are welcome.

Enrollment Note: This is a popular course with limited enrollment and tends to fill quickly. If you are interested in this course, we recommend enrolling as soon as possible.

“The show, rehearsal, and auditions are very professional. My favorite parts were the way the company becomes a family and the way the show comes together.” 
—Myla

“I met very talented people who inspired me.”
—Marisella

 

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Performance: Our Little Theater - NEW

4-Week A

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

4-Week B

Major: Grades 4-12
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

There are so many great musicals with smaller casts that are often passed over in schools because of the necessity to include as many students as possible. Have you ever seen a production of The Fantastiks? Or Falsettos? Small but powerful shows. In Our Little Theater, Usdan will finally put the small cast musical in the spotlight. Classes will be held in our Black Box theater, specifically designed for small-cast performances. Limited entry. (We are keeping it little!) Classes are grouped according to age division and grade. All levels of theatrical experience are welcomed. 
 

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Performance: The Actor's Group

4-Week A

Major: Grades 6-12
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

4-Week B

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

Ever wonder why they call it a play when acting often feels like work? The Acting Group - a three period Session A major, explores the process of becoming an actor. Students experience the audition and rehearsal phases under the direction of professional theater educators, culminating in a final performance at the end of the session. Past productions include She Kills Monsters, Dracula, Little Women, Radium Girls, and The Diary of Anne Frank. Rehearsals and performances take place in our Black Box theater space, specifically designed for small-cast performances. All levels of theatrical experience are welcome.

“It was extremely fun. I got to meet great new people, and we were able to put on a great performance.” 
—Oriana  

 

 

 

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Performance: The Ensemble

4-Week A

Major: Grades 4-12
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

4-Week B

Major: Grades 4-12
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

  • This Major must be taken for the full 8-week session.

Designed for young actors with some experience under their belt, the Ensemble is one of two 8-week Performance classes at camp. The Major’s greater length requires greater commitment and places greater demands on students. Students participate in the entire process of making live musical theater, from audition to performance. Usdan’s musical theater productions are led by two lead faculty members, one director and one musical director, who are professional theater educators specializing in directing and music directing. Rehearsals take place in open-air studios with at least one side exposed to Usdan’s beautiful, wooded campus. Classes are grouped according to age division and grade.

Admission to the Ensemble is subject to audition or proven previous experience in musical theater. Returning Usdan students must have taken at least one summer of Performance: Musical Theater to enroll. Students new to Usdan will be asked shortly after enrollment to submit a video audition if they are in the Senior Division or a placement form if they are in the Junior Division.

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Performance: The Usdan Troupe

4-Week A

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

4-Week B

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

  • An audition is required to determine acceptance or placement into this class.
  • This Major must be taken for the full 8-week session.

Usdan’s most accomplished student performers are invited to participate in the entire process of making live musical theater, from audition to performance. This three-period Major provides students additional time to develop their musical and theatrical skills, discover new characters, and deeply explore the mannerisms and behaviors of a role. Usdan’s musical theater productions are led by two lead faculty members, one director and one musical director, who are professional theater educators specializing in directing and music directing. Each summer, Troupe students express how they find lifelong friends and creative collaborators in their cast mates. At the end of the summer, the Usdan Troupe presents a fully staged musical production. Recent shows include Candide, Grand Hotel, Les Misérables, Carousel, Singin’ in the Rain, and Titanic. Join what former company members describe as “summer-stock theater for teens.” 

Rehearsals take place in open-air studios with at least one side exposed to Usdan’s beautiful, wooded campus. Admission to the Usdan Troupe is subject to audition; students will be asked to submit an audition recording including a song of their choice shortly after enrolling. Students who have taken this Major previously do not need to audition again.

To get a better feel for the Usdan Troupe Major, watch this short video made during Summer 2022. 

“The overall experience changed my view on performing.”  
—Alaina

“My favorite parts were the bond that we shared and the dedication that the directors put into their work for us.”
—Erik

“This group felt like a family.”
—Vanessa

 

 

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Theater Skills: Improvisation & Theater Games

4-Week A

MAJOR - N/A
Minor: Grades 4–12
REC - N/A

4-Week B

MAJOR - N/A
Minor: Grades 4–12
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

Explore the primary tools for creating improvised scenes and developing full characters under the expert guidance of a professional theater educator and performer. Students are encouraged to make strong emotional and personal choices, emphasizing character development through exercises and scene work. By the end of their session, students will better understand the basic rules of improvisation and how they can be applied to storytelling, acting, and just being human. Classes take place in open-air studios with at least one side exposed to Usdan’s beautiful wooded campus. Classes are grouped according to division and grade. All levels of theatrical experience are welcome.

“It made me more confident in my acting skills.”
—Nico

“It was funny and active.”
—Natalie

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Theater Skills: The Actor Sings

4-Week A

MAJOR - N/A
Minor: Grades 4–12
REC - N/A

4-Week B

MAJOR - N/A
Minor: Grades 4–12
REC - N/A

1-Week Rec

MAJOR - N/A
MINOR - N/A
REC - N/A

The new century has brought exciting and different styles of song and performance to the American stage. In The Actor Sings you will learn to perform songs from the musical theater of today. Think Hadestown, Jagged Little Pill, Mean Girls, Be More Chill, and The Prom. Under the instruction of a professional theater educator and performer, students spend their days engaging in vocal warm-ups and group exercises, working on individual songs or duets, and giving and receiving feedback with fellow singers. Classes take place in open-air studios with at least one side exposed to Usdan’s beautiful wooded campus. Classes are grouped according to age division and grade. All levels of theatrical experience are welcome.

“I really enjoyed doing each step of preparation learning how to vocalize, choreograph, harmonize, improvise, etc, and the class was very social and fun with the teacher being engaged with the students.”
—Jess

“It was fun, exciting, and helped my vocal skills a lot.”
—Shayna

 

 

 

Department Faculty & Staff

Jim Incorvaia

Department Chair, Theater

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