Gwendolyn Knapp and Todd Voltz both sing and play guitar in New Orleans sci-fi monster surf-punk band, the Green Demons. For two weeks in August, the duo lent their talents to the 3 Ring Circus Arts Education and Big Top Gallery’s sixth annual Summer Arts Camp on Clio Street in Central City. Each summer in a cement gallery featuring a red velvet stage surrounded by work from Big Top’s latest show, campers take one-week courses in sculpting, African dance, recycled arts and various forms of music. The success of 2011’s Summer Arts Camp inspired the Big Top to expand this year’s camp to Monday through Friday, 9a.m. to 3p.m.
In their “Rock-n-Roll Space Camp,” Knapp and Voltz led two separate week-long groups of kids ages 5 to 12 through the process of writing new lyrics to the Green Demons’ song, “Fuzzy Monster.” As you’ll see in the below video, the kids also constructed elaborate, colorful costumes and sets in preparation for their song’s music video, which can be seen at the end of the video.
If you’d like to support the program and others like it, the entire month of September will be dedicated to the 3 Ring Circus Arts Education and Big Top Gallery’s membership drive, called “Circus. Circus. Circus.” The drive starts with a group exhibition featuring more than 15 locally-based visual and performance artists. Other daily September events include an international film night, the Mixed Music series, and Sketchy Sunday, a collaborative project between visual artists and musicians. On September 8th from noon to 4p.m., the Big Top will host a free, street BBQ.