Share, , , Google Plus, Reddit, Pinterest, StumbleUpon


Posted in:

Medaille Summer Theatre for Teens

Henry Chugh and organizer Jon Elston

Theatre is vibrantly alive in Buffalo already, but Medaille Summer Theatre makes it so for teenagers specifically throughout the summer. For three weeks, teens work together in all aspects of creating their own theatrical production, including writing their own original short plays. Many students return year after year to further develop their skills and experience, while also leading new students each new season. This year seven experienced students will return, with four entering their fifth consecutive year. New this year is the transformation of the former Road Less Traveled Productions Summer Institute into Medaille Summer Theatre, with Medaille College the new home moving forward.

“As a teenager who is passionate about theatre, this camp means so much to me. It gives me a comfortable, supportive space for my friends and I to express and improve our various ideas and bring them to the stage. This opportunity for theatrical exploration has made me a more confident and skilled performer and writer.” -Daltin Danser

In addition to the joy young people feel in being able to create and act in their own performances, theatre experience also equips teenagers with confidence before an audience, while fostering a meaningful experience of teamwork, community, belonging, and critical problem solving experience.

Save the date for July 27th to see their 2018 end of season celebratory performance, open to friends and family.

Organizer Jon Elston, a career educator and award-winning local playwright, leads the program with Bella Poynton, playwright and theatre artist, who has also developed and produced her own plays in Buffalo and New York City.


This is my son’s 5th year attending summer theater with Jon and Bella. The camp teaches not only acting and writing skills but builds self-confidence by honing communication skills. The friendships made can last a lifetime. – Kathy Danser

Medaille Summer Theatre meets Monday through Friday 9 AM – 3:30 PM

Tuition Prices

*$400 for the full, three-week experience

*$350 for second and third week only (available for students new to the MST experience)

*$350 for children of Medaille students, faculty, staff, administrators and alumni (three-week experience)

A catered lunch plan is available (including vegetarian option!)

“Our son Noah has been going to this camp (when it was previously associated with Road Less Travelled) for several years now, and it is always the highlight of his summer. This unique summer experience provides a nourishing and enriching environment where students write their own plays, and then perform in each others plays. As a result, a real community of theatrical artists is built during the three weeks of the camp. At the same time, each of their individual interests are encouraged and their unique talents are developed.

From my personal perspective as a parent, I have seen Noah grow as a writer and an actor over the past few years. And most importantly, he has fun in the process! I attribute this to the unique environment that Jon and Bella work so hard to create.” -Dr. Daniel P. Kotzin

For more information, visit:

Photo credits: Sherryl Elston

Written by Arete


Megan Mills Hoffman, Alaskan-born and raised, arrived in Buffalo in 2003 thinking she'd stay for a few months, much like her other brief sojourns in Missoula, Montana; Oxford, Mississippi; Portland, Oregon; and Albany, New York. Then she discovered Wegman's cheese aisle and Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin Martin House, the first of which reminded her of her mother's experience living outside Manchester, England and the second of her father's experience in construction in Alaska. While discovering Buffalo's others treasures, she worked with Buffalo Rising as it first expanded online, the Burchfield Penney Art Center's New Museum Project, Buffalo State College, Western New York Land Conservancy, Young Audiences, and The Gow School. She has served on the boards of the Allentown Association, Mandala School, Western New York Environmental Alliance, and Field and Fork Network. With a B.S. in Sociology and twenty plus years of experience working in community development and grassroots organizations, she has embraced, developed, launched, and established, to varying degrees of success, a variety of local social movements, all directed at changing the way we think about our education and learning. She lives in a small town south of Buffalo, much like the one she grew up in, with her Buffalo-born husband, daughter, and Bernese Mountain dog.

View All Articles by Arete
Hide Comments
Show Comments