By Su D’Ambrosio
We all have friends with whom we share a common bond that somehow lasts for our entire lives. They might be friends we made in high school or college, friends we made in a performing group or a sports team, or friends who helped us cope with a difficult time in our lives. Somehow, even though we don’t see these people often, when we do get together or talk on the phone, it’s as if we are picking up exactly where we left off so long ago. There is a familiarity and connection that binds us in a very strong and ntimate way. One experience that often creates these kinds of bonds is summer camp.
Maybe it’s the relaxed nature of summer, everyone letting their guard down and enjoying the sunshine. Or, maybe it’s that summer camp brings young people together around a shared common interest. In the arts, there is an inherent emotional element that connects participants as they work together to create something meaningful and beautiful. The teamwork and collaboration necessary to perform in a large ensemble, a play, a dance concert, or a chorus, is so very intimate and transformative that participants often develop friendships and relationships that last a lifetime.
The arts provide a unique way to communicate and connect. There is the non-verbal communication involved between participants, which results in the creation of a beautiful piece of music, drama or dance. And then there is the element of communication between the group and the audience during a performance. Sharing an incredible product entirely made of the collective effort of each individual member is a powerful experience. We often find that students are reluctant to leave after the culminating performance of our summer camps, because they want to hold on to that exhilarating feeling of connection to each other and their audience.
At a time when our society struggles with issues of violence and disconnect, here at South Shore Conservatory we are extremely lucky to be surrounded by the beautiful creative energy of our students year round, and especially during our fun and focused summer programs. We are blessed by the great joy and privilege of catching young people at their best, in the greatest light of positive productivity with the goal of sharing their talents with each other and the community.
Whether it’s our American Music Camp for Strings students jamming fiddle tunes on stage, our Summer Music Festival students stretching the limits of their abilities to realize a difficult wind ensemble piece, our Summer Vocal Institute bringing students ages seven to eighteen together to collaborate on a production number, our Summer Drama students learning a new play, our Rock Camp students writing original music, our Flute Symphony students bringing adults and young people together, our Summer Ballet students creating choreography, or our Piano Camp students learning new styles of music, all our summer programs result in young people making new friends for life.
Learn more about SSC’s summer programs at https://sscmusic.org/summer-programs/, call 781-749-7565, x10, or find South Shore Conservatory on Facebook.
Su D’Ambrosio is Director of Programs and Curriculum for South Shore Conservatory. She lives in Plymouth with her daughters Maria and Rosa, and her dog Bernie who, although they did not meet at summer camp, will always be Su’s best friend for life.