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Summer Camps: Art & Theatre

Knoxville Arts & Fine Crafts Center has been a valuable addition to the Knoxville Parks & Recreation Department's programs for over thirty years. The program has grown to serve thousands of Knoxvillians and citizens in surrounding counties. For more information on specific classes please call 865-523-1401 and we'll send you a copy of our current schedule, or register online. Follow us on Facebook for other classes and events.

Art Camp Schedule:

Handbuilt Pottery Camp | Ages: 8-12

6/7-6/11 | 9AM-12PM

From functional to sculptural pottery, kids will create ceramic pieces using a range of hand-building techniques and processes, including some glazing.

Sea to Shining Sea | Ages: 8-12

6/14-6/18 | 9AM-12PM

Campers will start the day with a reading of an American folktale and a pictorial essay of the stories: The stories will be based on Paul Bunyan, Davy Crockett, Betsy Ross, Mark Twain and the lyrics of America the Beautiful. The campers will also do projects in clay, painting, sculpture and more based on the stories they listen to in class.

Visions from the Great Masters | Ages: 8-12 6/14-6/18 | 1PM-4PM

In this week-long camp, students will learn to draw natural objects and animals through the eyes and styles of the masters. From Van Gogh to Picasso, each day campers will focus on a different master’s style and create a picture using acrylics or pastels.

Hogwarts School of Arts & Crafts | Ages 8-12 Using a wide range of art materials and techniques from printmaking & sculpting to STEAM activities & stitching, you sure won’t be bored in this wizarding school!!

Carnival Art Extravaganza| Ages: 8-12

6/21-6/25 | 1PM-4PM

In this summer camp join Kelly under the “Big Top” and on the fairgrounds to explore all things circus through art. We will be using the painting, printmaking and mixed media processes to make some fun, exciting and colorful projects!

Stop Motion Animation

Ages: 8-12



Students will use clay, paper, found objects and more to bring their ideas to life. Through short screenings and demos the class will draw inspiration from the history of animation and contemporary stop-motion artists. Students will learn the full creative process from start to finish, including camera set up and shooting, character and story creation, set building and much more!

Under the Sea | Ages: 8-12

6/28-7/2 | 1PM-4PM

From tiny seahorses to gigantic whales, we’ll create creatures from the deep with printmaking, weaving, clay, mixed media and much more!

Steam Camp Ages: 8-12

7/19-7/23 | 9AM-12PM

Join us to dive into the world of STEAM: science, technology, engineering, art, and math! Kids will work both in teams as well as independently to use their creative problem-solving skills and complete projects that light up, grow, move, and maybe even explode! Guaranteed to be an engaging, hands-on, and fun educational week.

Paper & Book Arts Camp | Ages: 8-12

7/19-7/23 | 1PM-4PM

Campers will learn all of the things you can do with paper! We will learn one of the ways paper is made, learn some printmaking processes, as well as several bookmaking processes. We’ll even make a birdhouse out of recycled materials!

The Art of the Game | Ages: 8-12

7/26-7/30 | 9AM-12PM

Game design is an art, and as in any other art, there are skills and knowledge that make it possible to make great games. In the Art of the Game, students will explore these skills, learning how games work and what qualities make a game that people want to play again and again. Over the course of the week students will create their own board game, complete with game board, cards and game pieces!

Making Comics | Ages: 8-12

7/26-7/30 | 1PM-4PM

Comics are a fun and engaging way to tell a story. This class explores this dynamic art medium. Exploring character design, page layout and storytelling, students will learn how to bring their comic creations to life.

Teen Art Camp | Ages: 12-18

8/2-8/6 | 9AM-12PM

Calling all creative teens- we have a camp designed specifically for you! With a new focus each day, you’ll get to dip your toes into the worlds of pottery, textiles, painting, printmaking and more! Come learn new skills, create masterpieces, and make new friends!

Summer Term at KCT’s Creative Dramatics Academy consists of 5 days of intensive sessions. Most classes will culminate in a showcase presentation for family and friends at the end of the term. The cost for the week varies by class. To reserve a spot in any class, or for more information use the online submission form at

Theatre Camp Schedule:

AGES 4 – 5

Tiny Thespians Presents the Crayon Book of Numbers

June 16-18 | 8AM–10AM

Students will learn about the various dramatic elements of a play including plot, setting, and character and be introduced to a technical element of theatre, such as costume or scenic design. This class includes lots of fun exercises and games and will culminate in a showcase performance for friends and family on the final day of class. No experience required.

Ages 6 – 7

Under the Sea | June 21-25 | 8:30AM-12:30PM

Through high-energy theatre games, exercises, songs, a daily craft, and the introduction of technical elements (set, costumes, props, and sound), students will receive an introduction to the process of taking a play from page (the first read-thru) to the stage (final performance). Some experience and/or reading ability recommended.

How to Catch a Dinosaur | July 12-16 | 9AM–12PM

This class draws on the high-energy and creativity of this age group to introduce our youngest thespians to the basic concepts of theatre. Each day students will focus on an element through show and tell, a craft, group story time, and beginning theatre games. The class will culminate in a group retelling of this story.

Monster Academy | July 19-23 | 9AM–12PM

From “ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggety beasties/ And things that go bump in the night,” KCT’s Monster Academy puts ogres, dragons, werewolves, goblins and other scarers right under the stage lights where they belong! The class uses fun, familiar and inventive characterizations to help students learn to focus and flesh out their imaginations! Students will learn the basics of character acting and how to build mythical and non-human characters.

Ages 8 – 10

Introduction to Acting, Ages 8 & 9 | June 14-18 | 8AM-12PM

In this class students learn how to create distinctive characters through physical action and place those characters in improv situations that require quick thinking and a great imagination! The class includes skill building games, scenes, and exercises that help students learn to build better characters from the feet up!

Introduction to Acting: Life in Narnia,

Ages 8 to 10 | July 12-16 | 9AM–12PM

This class will focus on scenes and characters from the work of C.S. Lewis with an emphasis on the practical aspects of creating character and story for the stage in a fast-paced production environment. Memorization is required.

Introduction to Acting, Wonderful World of Dahl,

Ages 8 to 10 | July 26-30 | 8:30AM-12:30PM

In this class we’ll explore the exciting world of characters from the works of Roald Dahl. KCT staff members have designed this class to channel the incredible energy of this age group into different characters and theatrical creations. Each class will begin with an introductory concept or skill of the theatre and acting for the stage. Students will practice through group acting games, performance activities, and beginning scene study and character development. This class is designed for students with little to no theatre experience who are interested in exploring the art of acting.

Ages 10 & 11

Intro to Acting, MYTH-I am Hermes!

Ages 10 & 11 | June 14-18 | 1PM-4PM

One of the great cradles of theatre was ancient Greece-it’s also the birthplace of an epic mythology that continues to capture both the heart and imagination of people everywhere. In this class, actors will work from the graphic novel I am Hermes! Mischief-making Messenger of the Gods to study the magical art of acting and dive into the world of re-creating the characters that instilled awe and wonder in the hearts of the ancients.

Intro to Acting | Ages 10 & 11 | June 21-25 | 1PM-4PM

Each class will begin with an introductory concept or skill of the theatre and acting for the stage. Students will practice through group acting games, performance activities, and beginning scene study and character development. This class is designed for students with little to no theatre experience who are interested in exploring the art of acting.

Intro to Improv

Ages 8 & 9 | June 21-25 | 8AM-12PM

Ages 10 & 11 | July 12-16 | 1PM-4PM

Ages 12 & Up | July 26-30 | 1PM-4PM

This is for students with an innate imagination and love of storytelling. It’s known to build confidence, public speaking skills, and quick thinking. The goal of this course is to develop a strong sense of character choices, emotional needs, status within a scene, physicality, and creating the elements of a strong story. The class will focus on a combination of improvised games and scene work and will culminate in an improvised showcase. All you need to bring is your imagination!

Introduction to Acting, Into the Wardrobe

Ages 10 & 11 | July 26-30 | 1PM–5PM

Ages 12 & Up | July 12-16 | 12:45PM-4:45PM

In this fantasy-based class, students will learn the basics of character acting and how to build mythical and non-human characters, as they are often called upon to do at KCT. The class will feature exercises, theatre games, an introduction to technical elements, and the opportunity to do scene work from the C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia.

Ages 12 & up

Intro to Acting | Ages 12 & Up | June 21-25 | 1PM-4PM

This class is designed to develop the confidence and creativity of the actor. Students are introduced to the fundamentals of acting both physical and imaginative, including correct vocal projection, stage movement, character development, and objective based character. The class begins with group exercises and includes opportunities for individual development and partner work as students apply their skills to a script. The class concludes with a brief showcase of scene work.

Musical Theatre: Move, Sing, Act!

12 & Up | July 19-23 | 1PM-4:30PM

Musical Theatre is the marriage of three distinct performance skills into one powerful theatre moment. In this class students will learn to develop and combine those skill sets through music, movement, and a strong connection to character. Through appropriate selections from the Broadway repertoire, students focus on developing expressive communication and building performance skills through voice and choreography.

Technical Classes Available:

Costume Design for Animal Characters | June 14-18 | 1PM-4PM

Join us as we learn how to turn actors into beasts – real and imaginary- with costumes that stand up to the rigors of active storytelling. Whether students have a specific interest in costuming or simply want to dig deeper into their overall storytelling skills, this class offers something for a variety of students.

Advanced Audition – Self Taping and Online Auditions | June 28-30

David Brian Alley will lead this class that focuses on advanced audition preparation. The class will address not only the selection and preparation of audition material but will also include instruction in the specifics of online auditions, and self-taping with a special focus on using phone cameras to successfully capture an audition. The class begins with an online session.

Lighting for the Stage | June 28-30 | 9AM-2PM

Lighting designer Jordan Vera (Clarence Brown Theatre, North Carolina Stage Company) introduces students to practical lighting design from its very beginnings in script analysis and research to the creation of specific looks for individual scenes. Students will work with both fundamental ideas of lighting while working with the very real work of turning theory, mood, and theme into light.

Beyond Tie-Dye | July 7- 9 | 1PM to 4PM

Get your design and craft groove on in this intensive experience students explore the world of dye techniques! We’ll consider a variety of skills, things like ice dyeing, simple shibori, rust dyeing, dyeing wool roving (and learning how to use that wool to needle felt).


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