About Aleta Barthell
Aleta has been teaching acting to kids in North San Diego County since 2003. Her skills and background have helped her build a unique program that puts kids' imaginations into action.
Kids Act was founded by Aleta Barthell
-SAG and AFTRA member
-Professional stage actor 10+ years
-Registered screenwriter with Screenwriter's Guild of America
-Trained at Northwestern University (B.S.), British American Drama Academy, Shakespeare & Company, and UCSD La Jolla
Kids Act is based on Aleta Barthell's extensive professional acting experience and training. Students learn foundational acting skills in a context that's valuable and interesting for every kid, not just those who want to go further in acting. (See Student Achievements to learn more about those who do go further in acting.) Kids have so much fun that they often repeat the program, and there are opportunities to learn more and work at a higher level when they do.
Kids enjoy doing the Warm Up Exercises, and playing games like Status, and Sending a Package. They connect with core Kids Act experiences like choosing a hat from the Hat Bag, Making Characters, Creating a Story Together, learning a piece of verse by Shakespeare, and performing in a theater.
Parents often report gains in confidence, public speaking ability, ability to work with others, and even more profound benefits. Check out Parent & Kid Comments to learn more.
How did Kids Act get started, and why is it so different from other acting programs? When Aleta Barthell was a little girl, she was cast as The Bunny in a production of "The Bad Children" at Northwest College (in Powell, Wyoming). She was so excited! She went home and thought all about what The Bunny would say and do during the play.
The next day at rehearsal, she learned that The Bunny had no lines! She was still excited to be on stage and be part of the show, but there was no room for all of her imagination and creativity.
Aleta grew up and went on to a long and varied acting career, including lots of professional experience and training (see Aleta's Acting Resume), some more satisfying, some less. When she became interested in teaching acting and setting up her own program, she remembered The Bunny, and decided to build a program centered on creative expression and imagination.
Kids Act is that program! It offers many opportunities for each individual to grow and to shine. Each Kids Act teacher is steeped in this philosophy, and learns the core methods of the program that help every kid have a fun and valuable experience.