GAMBIER — Students from the Mime Youth Seminar at Kenyon College put on their end-of-class show Thursday night at the Bolton Theater on the Kenyon campus.
This year there were 25 students enrolled in the program, many of them returning from previous years. The program is a joint venture between Right Brain Productions of Mount Vernon and The School For Mime Theater of Tucson, Ariz.
“This is our seventh year of Youth Mime Theater,” said Joseph Bell of Right Brain Productions. “We hooked up with Rick Wamer, Stephen Chipps and Lorie Heald. They had been looking for a youth mime program and we got together with them and got it going. We are now expanding. While many of the students are relatively local, many are not. We have two young ladies from Texas this year.
“Many of the students have returned. It’s about 50-50,” he added.
Several students are not just returnees, but have been with the program all seven years. Others have been with the program anywhere from four to six years.
The program this year was “Jungle Book,” which was adapted for the program by Wamer, Heald and Chipps, with a lot of input from the students.
And there was a new twist this year. The first half of the program consisted of several student-created pieces, along with solo pieces by the faculty.
The work of the senior students showed the fruits of their years of experience with the program, but several of the new students stood out, too.
A skit called “Popped Balloon” with Christine and Leslie Bell was superbly executed and funny. Christine is in her first official year; Leslie is in his fourth.
The play was a well-choreographed production with most or all of the 25 students on stage at one time. No one appeared to miss a beat or their mark through the entire play. The group is well taught, well rehearsed and well encouraged by Heald, Chipps and Wamer.