A passion for performing arts

The performing arts is a term that can cover many creative disciplines and activities, for example dance, drama and music, performed to an audience. This can also include things like musicals, ballet and opera, as well as magic and circus acts! With World Theatre Day coming up on March 27th, it’s the perfect time to celebrate all things theatre and these valuable art forms, and to indulge your inner performer or explore something new together…

Why do children need the performing arts?

Whether your child has expressed a tentative interest just for fun or shows a burning desire to be destined for the stage, these creative activities might be beneficial and enjoyable. As outlets for self-expression, it’s thought that the performing arts could be helpful both personally and in terms of gaining transferable life skills as children grow.

Drama
Performing can be beneficial for children of various ages. Acting live in front of an audience may help with developing improvisation and problem-solving skills – ‘the show must go on’, after all. Drama performances offer opportunities to work on public speaking, which can build self-confidence. Mastering performance anxiety is a vital life skill that will hopefully be applied to future challenges. Storytelling drama workshops also allow children to learn through play; acting and embodying different roles teaches important lessons about empathy. Sometimes the more shy and reserved children come to life through performing in character, which might then help with processing and sharing their own emotions off stage too.

Dance

Dance as an art form is thought to help with releasing emotions, providing a powerful way to express yourself through movement. Dancing also contributes towards improved strength, stamina, flexibility, coordination, spatial awareness and overall general fitness – with so many different dance styles and fun techniques to try, it’s a fantastic way to encourage children to stay active as they grow. Establishing these healthy habits may prove useful when trying out other new sports too. The effort put in and the time spent mastering dance routines might also help with developing self-discipline, a strong work ethic and inner drive to succeed. Teamwork skills and communication are worked on and improved through group performances as well.

Music
Singing solo or with others is great for evoking feelings of togetherness and emotional connection. Children and young people might feel more comfortable expressing themselves through song, or through composing their own music to communicate. As a wonderful form of stress relief through fun and often hands-on activities, music can also appeal to children who may sometimes struggle to stay engaged with their learning. Social opportunities arise when performing together in a band or vocal group, along with chances to make new friends. Learning about musicians and music genres and traditions from around the globe is also an exciting way to teach children about different cultures, traditions and perspectives.

Fun ideas for families wanting to appreciate the wonderful world of theatre

• Go and see family-friendly shows and live theatre performances together

• Attend acting and storytelling workshops at local venues or drama schools

• Encourage your child to try some acting, singing or dance classes with a friend

• Children can enrol at a performing arts school/centre such as Stagecoach Performing Arts or Razzamataz Theatre Schools to develop their skills

• Have musical theatre-themed dance parties at home

• Recreate your favourite stories by acting scenes out together with costumes and props

• Enjoy drama activities, e.g. write and perform your own short plays or have a go at some improv sessions together

Are there any budding performers in your family?

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