By Rachel White and Beth MacLeod Largent
Our Wacky Wednesdays family concerts bring New England’s best kid-friendly performers to South Shore Conservatory’s Jane Carr Amphitheater in Hingham every summer. We love sitting back watching families enjoy the dynamic, fun-filled performances, which we feel are perfect for the whole family.
These family concerts are special to us because of the unique fusion of educational enrichment and recreational activity they offer. SSC Preschool and Kindergarten Director Rachel White and SSC Director of Performance Beth MacLeod Largent share their observances of kids’ and parents’ takeaways from these concerts.
Rachel: Wacky Wednesdays concerts help build community and enrich the lives of our children. The wonderment of live performance, in a world where children spend so much time behind screens and tablets, is something that is inimitable. Taking in a live performance is an experience that connects a child to the world around them. The sights of bright colors and happy faces. The smell of sweet summer air wafting through the amphitheater. The sound of music and laughter. The feeling of dancing freely in the aisles or on the lawn, and making friends in your community. Sharing a picnic lunch on the lawn with your family…and sometimes even with your preschool friends!
Beth: Attending the concerts is a great way for you and your child to bond. Or how about bonding with grandma and/or grandpa? Some years I’ve seen many grandparents come bring their grandchildren to all four performances, giving mom a morning off, or time at home to bond with a newborn. We have a playground onsite, so it’s easy to make a morning of it. These fun performances are enjoyed by adults too! Some concertgoers come just to relish the joyful response of the children.
Rachel: I also love that at Wacky Wednesdays concerts, kids can move freely, be loud, and experience the performance with their whole body and all their senses. There is a certain sparkle in their eyes, which are usually fixated on the performer. They clap, dance, and cheer with excitement.
Beth: Our amphitheater really augments the interactive nature of these performances. With over 200 covered seats, we perform rain or shine; and the large lawn means that kids have plenty of room to move around! Infants in strollers happily snooze under the shade trees, leaving older siblings to explore and make friends. Every year there is a bubble parade where hoards of kids follow our volunteers around as they wave the bubble wand – nothing says summer like bubbles! After the concerts, most of our performers stay to sign autographs and wave goodbye to the families. I can tell they enjoy the children and love what they do!
Wacky Wednesdays family concerts, sponsored by The Harold and Avis Goldstein Trust, are at South Shore Conservatory, One Conservatory Drive, Hingham. These educational and entertaining concerts, are Wednesday mornings, at 10 am, from July 10 through July 31, and include performances by Vanessa Trien and the Jumping Monkeys, Karen K. & the Jitterbugs, SSC ImagineARTS Band, and Matt Heaton and the Outside Toys. More details at sscmusic.org/wacky/, or find South Shore Conservatory on Facebook.