"With a few time management skills and some common sense, one can easily manage the potentially high levels of stress and a fun three weeks doing theater." (stock image courtesy Microsoft Office Images)

Besides being cast as J. Pierpont Finch in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, I was one of five lucky Stagedoor Manor campers who wrote and submitted a play for the program "Dramafest." Scripts are submitted and read before the session begins. Five are chosen and the writers of the winning scripts then cast, direct, and tech their respective works for the whole camp. I was very excited to learn that my submission had been chosen, but suddenly every hour seems filled.

There are several bonus activities beyond the primary shows, and those lucky enough to be involved in one, or more, scramble to get the work done. Stagedoor is frequently referred to as a "working" summer camp. The leisurely activities exhibited at most summer camps (especially those concerning sports) are not frequently indulged in by the campers who take their roles and commitments seriously. I can say with confidence that this group of people comprises most of the camp. Taking in some sun by the pool, or relaxing with friends are even less possible for those who are leads in their shows or have multiple commitments.

Enjoying one's summer at Stagedoor is feasible though. With a few time management skills and some common sense, one can easily manage the potentially high levels of stress and a fun three weeks doing theater.

For example, during the camp-wide trip to the movies which occurs once a session, it may be a good idea to bring your script along to study during the bus ride. The movie theater is a solid hour away from the camp. The time on the bus to and from the movies is a perfect window of time to not only keep yourself busy but to get yourself ahead for upcoming rehearsals.

Another helpful way to stay efficient is to stay busy during all of rehearsal. When you are not blocking a scene on stage or rehearsing a song with the musical director, it may be smart to study your script during lulls in the rehearsal or taking a group of friends to one of the many studios on the camp grounds to practice choreography. Most of these tricks come with experience or time (or common sense as mentioned above) but they can be essential for getting work done with productively and enjoying a memorable three weeks.

Sleep is overrated.

For more information on Stagedoor Manor Performing Arts Training Center, visit www.stagedoormanor.com.