Looking for a perfect Mother’s Day (or Father’s Day) gift, or just want to capture your kids’ profiles in a lovely, unique way? Reserve your spot(s) with renowned Silhouette Artist Karl Johnson! On Sunday, March 19, and Tuesday, March 21, he will be creating hand cut silhouettes virtually via Zoom by appointment — just for KidFriendly DC readers!
Each session takes about 10 minutes, and all ages are welcome — even the squirmy ones! Silhouettes are $35, and duplicates and frames are also available. Portraits will be shipped for free well in time for Mother’s Day, but they make sweet gifts for many occasions.
Sign up here and be sure to reserve a time slot for each child!
GIVEAWAY: Want a chance to win a free Silhouette Portrait Session with Karl Johnson? Simply leave a comment on this post letting me know what local activity your family has enjoyed most so far in 2023. This giveaway will run through Wednesday, February 15, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!
Winter is a great season for chess, and you can have two months for the price of one with Magnus Academy’s Cyber Monday chess promotion! It’s a great gift for either beginner players or advanced students. Formerly called Silver Knights, Magnus Academy has classes for all levels with great coaches!
Magnus Chess Academy has taught 100,000+ kids chess in the area since 2008. Between now and Cyber Monday, November 28: Use the coupon code “cyber” when you buy one month, and get the second month free!
How does the online academy work? Read below to find out!
1. New students start with a quick assessment to figure out what level classes they should take, from Pawns (how do you play chess?) to Kings (some of the best kids in the state for their age). 2. Schedule your weekly semi-private classes. There are classes Mondays through Saturdays for each level, so that you’ll definitely be able to find good (and flexible) times that work for your family. Take a look at the times here. Experienced coaches keep the classes engaging, approachable, and fun for the students. 3. Join as many big group events as you want — like online tournaments (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays) and bonus lessons (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays). 4. Visits from famous chess players like Chess World Champion Magnus Carlsen (see video below from last visit), who is joining on Sunday, December 4! Other guest instructors include Anish Giri, the #7 player in the world and very fun!), Judit Polgar (best female chess player ever, 5 visits this year), and more.
This Cyber Monday sale is a great way to start chess (think holiday gift)! A few more things to know:
Cost is $89/month.
The academy is month-to-month with no long term commitment.
Start anytime and stop any time.
If you join the academy, and for whatever reason it’s not the right fit, cancel in your first two weeks for a full refund.
Sign up here — and remember to use the coupon code “cyber” for your second month free!
What does disability mean? Do you or does someone you know have a specific disability? Guest Artist Rafael Lopez will lead elementary school students in a virtual program that discusses the history of disability representation on US postage stamps. From Albert Einstein to Lou Gehrig, children will learn more about the many individuals with disabilities that have been honored on a commemorative stamp, as well as the ways—both positive and negative—disabilities have been portrayed by the United States Postal Service. Participants will get to discuss with Rafael and the author of Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You, Sonia Sotomayor, what their personal experiences with disabilities have been.
The National Children’s Chorus Academy based in Washington, D.C., provides children ages 5 to 17 the opportunity to learn and grow in an extraordinary musical environment. The country’s leading music educators work with students in small groups weekly to develop their vocal and musicianship skills from the most basic concepts through the college level. Tone quality, breath support and musical expression are cultivated within the individual singers, while working together as an ensemble culminates in an exciting array of performances, presenting world premieres and collaborating with an exceptional roster of professional artists from around the world.
Additionally, students have the exclusive opportunity to participate in annual international summer tours, opera camp, and national concerts at premier venues such as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. With a spectacular musicianship curriculum to accompany its first-rate vocal training, the National Children’s Chorus is an unparalleled educational resource for children who love to sing! If your child has musical ability, don’t waste another minute.
You may have heard of Young Artists of America before. They’ve been voted as a top summer camp by Washington City Paper and Bethesda Magazine readers for many years in a row. Their productions have won Regional Emmys, and their year-round programming was named “Best Youth Music Program” (Bethesda Magazine’s Best of Bethesda 2020) and “Best Performing Arts Education for Young Artists” (MD Theater Guide 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards).
With the pandemic, they have been pivoting quickly, thinking creatively with safety first – offering virtual classes as well as fully-staged digital musical theatre productions that include filmed, in-person performances and virtual performances edited together. They were recently featured on Fox5 for one of these productions, their upcoming presentation of Sondheim’s INTO THE WOODS, partially performed literally in the woods!
So, if you are looking for a summer program for your performing arts tween or teen, check out what YAA is offering! They have two different programs this summer:
Conservatories is a full-day, on-campus or hybrid model that focuses on the artistic process plus applied training in Acting, Dance and Voice, culminating in a fully-staged digital musical theatre production (RENT, Cabaret, The Little Mermaid, Jr., and Madagascar, Jr.) at the end of each session. They run from June 25 – July 9 and July 9-23
Academies is a half-day, all virtual model called that focuses on the artistic process to educate aspiring young performers of all levels in the many disciplines of musical theatre. Both of these models have programming for students ranging from 5th grade to college freshmen at all levels. Sessions run from June 28 – July 9 and July 12-23.
If your summer is booked, be sure to check out their year-round programming as well. They offer spring and fall semester training for singers, actors, dancers and instrumentalists as well, and even have one-off workshops (sometimes free!). No matter the program, YAA is known for one-of-a-kind opportunities, truly nothing like anything in the area.
Students learn from top teaching faculty as well as teaching artists, oftentimes right from Broadway. Their students have had the opportunity to work directly with such Broadway legends as Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin, Children of Eden), Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast), Tim Rice (Lion King), and performers the likes of Kristin Chenoweth, Julie Andrews, and Eleasha Gamble, Anthony McGill, and countless others.
In normal times, they produce full-staged, symphonic productions and perform them on state-of-the-art stages like the Music Center at Strathmore and The Clarice. Check out highlights from Les Miserables, one of their last fully-staged productions before the pandemic:
Even more, Young Artists of America has generously offered KFDC readers $100 off registration for new students depending on the program! Use promo code KF100 at check out when you register on their website.
This post is sponsored by Young Artists of America, however, I only promote programs, services, places, and events that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.