Performing arts camp returning to Bogalusa in June

Published 8:51 am Monday, May 11, 2015

On June 8, Bogalusa native Bruce Sampson will bring his team of talented director friends back to Washington Parish for a five-day performing arts camp called “Believe Summer Camp Experience.”

The camp is open to all students in the parish and surrounding areas between third and 12th grades, including 2015 graduates. Chad Harry and the BHS Music Department will once again play host to the camp.

This year’s directing team will include: Roshad Gunter and Kiara Sampson as dance and performance instructors; Annie Gambino and Jolene Sampson as music instructors; and Nick Rocz as acting instructor. This summer’s theme is “Dreams and Dreamers.” Rocz will fly in from New York while Gunter and the Sampsons will all come from Southern California. Gambino has a shorter trek as she is currently living in New Orleans. This team, like last year’s, has national and international experience in performing, teaching and directing. While Erick “Spider” Paul and Abby Krumrine will not return to Louisiana this summer, they have contributed choreography and direction to this year’s camp and show.

The schedule for the camp is 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, with the culminating stage show taking place at 7 p.m. on Friday, June 12, in the Bogalusa High School auditorium. The cost is $60 for the entire camp and show and includes a souvenir T-shirt that will double as part of the student’s costume for the show.

According to Bruce Sampson, “Because this is my home, we’ve tried to make the camp as affordable as possible by charging $40 less than we do elsewhere and by partnering with local businesses.”

Sampson implores folks to register online as soon as possible so that they can be better prepared for the camp and know what sizes and how many T-shirts to order.

“Even if you plan to pay later, please register students now,” Sampson said.

Sampson is also pleased to have International Paper and Magnolia Gardens Inn and Suites as sponsors this year. He is hoping that churches and others will step up to help scholarship children who need financial assistance.

Sampson and his Believe team will be quite busy this summer. Immediately following the camp and show in Bogalusa, they will all travel to Gallman, Miss., to conduct another camp. That particular camp already has students from three states signed up to attend.

Then on July 12, the team will begin three consecutive, 7-day camps in China. They will visit the cities of Nanjing, Nanchang and Shanghai, where they will work with students and teachers as part of a continuing cultural exchange initiative that Sampson kicked off last summer after the inaugural Believe camps.

Parents and students are encouraged to visit for more information and to register.