Next Week Brings Business, Comedy Camps for Kids


Local improv comedy maven Kimee Balmilero is leading a pair of concurrent week-long summer camps for kids next week. In addition to another installment of Camp BizGym, dedicated to creating “kidpreneurs,” she is also launching Hawaii’s first “Comedy Camp.”

Both camps are open to fifth through twelfth graders, and are a partnership with BizGym, a business planning and collaboration platform founded by Steve Sue of Lemonade Alley fame. The company’s non-profit arm, the BizGym Foundation, houses Balmiero’s Story U Arts, dedicated to training both adults and kids in acting, improv, storytelling, and writing.

Camp BizGym is a “choose-your-own business adventure” program that leads young entrepreneurs through the process of finding their calling,  building their talents into a business, discovering their voices, and finding an audience.

“Whether you’re an inventor or a musician, it’s never too early to turn your passion into profit,” the website notes, explaining the five-day agenda. They include sessions on branding, messaging, and storytelling, a professional photoshoot, a PSA video shoot, and finally presentations to family and friends.

Meanwhile, Comedy Camp 2015 will be devoted to “building confidence through comedy.” The program is a natural next-generation version of Hawaii’s first sketch comedy festival, which Balmiero organized earlier this year.

Comedy Camp will focus on both performance skills (including sketch and improv comedy) as well as behind-the-scenes talents like scriptwriting and video production. Participants will come out of the week-long program with an original comedy script and video, as well as a wealth of knowledge from a group of mentors. And Comedy Camp will end with a casual comedy show and film festival where family and friends are invited to be a part of the audience.

Balmilero brought her extensive experience in television and on Broadway back to the islands several years ago, starting with improv classes then moving into teaching and performing across Honolulu, most recently landing a gig as the extended learning coordinator for Mid-Pacific Institute, which is hosting next week’s camps.

You can register for Camp BizGym 2015 and Comedy Camp 2015 online. The cost is $400 (plus a $9.95 Eventbrite fee) each or $700 (ditto) for both, food and snacks not included. For more information, visit the BizGym Foundation website or the Story U Arts website.



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