Today’s staff spotlight is on one of our most versatile staff members: Drama Specialist, Jake Rosenberg.
Jake was a Tawonga camper for four years before joining the staff and can lead the campers in just about anything; seriously, he can be found leading gnarly blocks, storytelling, chants in the sweat lodge, improv games and even creating some imaginative activities like “nighttime ninjas” and “spaceship nannies.”
Here’s Jake on his Tawonga staff experience:
What do you do as a Drama Specialist?
I lead various improv games, plays and storytelling. I’m also currently writing the All Camp Production which is a half hour Tawonga adaptation of ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens.’ It’s cool because we’re taking a story that everyone is familiar with and allowing the campers to engage with it through the art of storytelling rather than through TV or other technology.
What inspired you to be in this role?
Playwriting in my life outside of Camp and is what inspired me to take this job. I eat, sleep and breathe drama 24 hours a day, so this was an amazing opportunity to be part of a community that I was already familiar with, as well as to do drama with kids. It brings a cool summer energy to one of my passions, and I’m learning so much about drama from working with these kids.
What’s the most inspiring aspect of your job?
Kids have such critical brains when it comes to imagination blocks and storytelling. They can recognize good storytelling from bad storytelling– they’re always so invested in the stories which encourages me to continuously hone my talents. Ultimately, it creates a space for me to improve my skills both in playwriting and in my work with the kids.
Describe a moment during Camp that’s had an impact on you.
During a Ruach Rides (bus pick-up), we coordinated a “back of the bus” storytelling activity. It was a lightbulb moment for me that there is still totally a place in this world for the most basic forms of storytelling, just sitting in a circle talking to each other, sharing exciting things – which can be hard to make space for with such a prevalence of technology today.
What does Tawonga mean to you?
Camp Tawonga is one of the oldest places I’ve been a part of, with thriving traditions and living history. Everyone here is connected to each other, whether by being former campers together or being on staff together. It’s nice to be connected to a story that is much larger than any one person.
Tawonga is fortunate to have such a creative leader in Jake, inspiring our campers and staff alike to express our true selves. Kol Hakavod, Jake!
P.S. Check out another staff spotlight from the summer, featuring songleader Jordan Hurwitz.
Enjoy some photos below from Session III, and stay tuned for more coming this evening: