Summer Arts Activities Abloom at Southeast’s River Campus


River CampusCAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., May 7, 2015 – A full slate of summer activities is planned at Southeast Missouri State University’s River Campus, providing plenty of opportunities to enjoy the arts in the coming months.

Throughout May, the River Campus hosts art exhibits, music recitals and concerts, theatre and dance second stage productions, and senior showcases. As multiple dance studios rent out Bedell Hall for their spring concerts, the main stage will see hundreds of children and their parents.

June becomes even more active as every department offers summer programming, including day academies and residential camps. There are opportunities for people of all ages.


The Summer Art Academy
June 8-24

Art Academy student creating a collageThe Summer Art Academy offers classes in ceramics, drawing, painting and other mediums. Workshops last one week, and are available for children, teens and adults. For more information call (573) 651-2143.

“Every summer, I am amazed at the level of work the children create for the academy,” said Rhonda Weller-Stilson, director of the Earl and Margie Holland School of Visual and Performing Arts and associate dean of the College of Liberal Arts. “The community has the opportunity to see the students’ art displayed at the Arts Council of Southeast Missouri in August. Carol Horst does an outstanding job organizing the academy.”


Music Academy Music Academy

The Music Academy has nearly 200 students a year in private lessons. Spring recitals occur in May in the Robert F. and Gertrude L. Shuck Music Recital Hall. The music continues throughout the summer with private lessons and group classes. Children as young as 3 years old can begin the Suzuki String program. Music Academy Director Steve Schaffner has developed new classes for summer 2015. For more information call (573) 651-2378.

Residential Camps  

Vocal Arts Boot Camp
Percussion Camp
June 15-20

Students in grades 7-12 can study at the Vocal Arts Boot Camp or Percussion Camp. Students can study privately, take master classes and perform at the River Campus Summer Arts Festival.

Chamber Music Institute
Chamber Music InstituteJuly 13-18

The Chamber Music Institute occurs July 13-18, and is designed for musicians age 12 through collegiate to study and perform chamber music.

Theatre and Dance

Summer Workshops
June 1-5, 8-12

musical theatre class-peter panUsing popular literature to get children excited acting, dancing and singing. Children will have the opportunity to dance to music from “Frozen,” and “Newsies,” while others will study scripts of “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” and “Snow White.” For more information on any theatre and dance academy, class or camp, please call (573) 651-2149.

Dance Intensive
June 19

The academy is offering a one-day dance intensive on June 19. Hillary Peterson will be coordinating this exciting new program. For more information on any theatre and dance academy, class or camp, please call (573) 651-2149.

Acting Laboratory
June 15-20

The Theatre and Dance Department is offering a one-week residential camp. Students will study improvisation, auditioning, acting, voice, movement, stage combat and more, and will perform at the River Campus Summer Arts Festival.


The Crisp Museum will be open throughout the summer and will feature the Biennial Art Faculty Exhibition in the main gallery.

Museum Academy Workshop
June 2-5

This academy workshop, entitled Machineworx, is free for children ages four to 10 years old. Seating is limited. To pre-register call (573) 651-2260.

River Campus Summer Arts Festival
June 20, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

EVT-SummerArt“We are committed to offering to this community opportunities to not only view art, but to also become part of the art making,” says Weller-Stilson, “The festival allows everyone to participate in the various art forms and to be entertained throughout the day.” Community members can partake in a variety of activities including hip-hop or line dances, face paintings and sidewalk chalking, and they will have the opportunity to watch stage combat and magic tricks. Capping the event is “Seussical” the musical at 7:30 p.m. in the Wendy Kurka Rust Flexible Theatre. Tickets may be purchased by contacting the River Campus Box office, located in the Cultural Arts Center, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., by calling (573) 651-2265 or by visiting

“Last Summer’s festival was even more successful than we anticipated. Hundreds of guests flooded our campus for the day. It was marvelous to see people of all ages creating art, dancing, listening to music, and so much more,” said Weller-Stilson.

The events, including parking, are free and open to the community. New activities include a Plein Air Competition, car show featuring hot rods and antiques beautifully painted and SADI’s art for all. Community partners include Old Town Cape and the Arts Council of Southeast Missouri.

In addition to the performance of “Seussical” at the River Campus Summer Arts Festival, the musical will enjoy a full run over a 10-day period. Other performance dates are as follows:

June 18-20 at 7:30 p.m.
June 21 at 2 p.m.
June 25-27 at 7:30 p.m.
June 26 at 10 a.m.
June 27 at 2 p.m.
June 28 at 2 p.m.

Appropriate for persons of all ages, this musical comedy incorporates over 15 Dr. Seuss stories, including favorites such as “Green Eggs and Ham,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” “The Cat in the Hat,” and “Oh the Places You’ll Go!”

The production team includes Dr. Kenn Stilson, director; Hilary Peterson, choreographer; Jeffrey Leutkenhaus, scenic designer; Matthew Buttrey, costume designer; and Jonathan Allender-Zivic, lighting designer and technical director.

Seating is limited. Contact the River Campus Box Office at (573) 651-2265 for more information.