I CLOSE-UP I
Interlochen offers future virtuosos
new- avenues of expression
Special to The Jewish News
I 'm learning a lot, but everything
here is very fast. You do a dance
step once and you are expected
to pick it up."
That is 13-year-old Debby
Rosenberg's assessment of her first
summer at Interlochen National
Music Camp, which offers students
concentrated programs in music,
drama, visual arts and dance.
Located 15 miles southwest of
Traverse City, the 1,200-acre wooded
campus is home for eight weeks to
1,362 students from 27 foreign coun-
tries and all 50 states. Rosenberg,
from Bloomfield Hills, is one of more
than 200 Jewish students attending
Interlochen this summer, including
four from Israel and approximately 30
from the Detroit area.
"Interlochen offers an excellent
program for anyone interested in the
Anna Rabinowitz practices the saxophone.
arts," said Anna Rabinowitz, 15, of
Bloomfield Hills. "My major here is
art. There is a wide variety of classes.
I love the teachers and the kids."
In addition to ceramics,
Rabinowitz is taking beginning sax-
ophone, music theory and costume
design and execution. "I'm learning
to construct from a pattern and sew
manually. High school is a good time
to experiment so you will know what
you want to do when you get older."
A student at Detroit Country Day,
Rabinowitz said she wanted to meet
people who are interested in the same
things she is. "I love the aura and the
feeling of Interlochen. Everyone has
something about -them that makes
them unique and special."
While daytime is allotted to
classes and practice, evenings offer a
plethora of cultural experience. "In
the evening I can work in the visual
arts room, attend concerts, art lec-
tures and films," Rabinowitz said. "Or
I can socialize or sleep."
Rabinowitz conforms to the camp
rules and, like all campers, she wears
a uniform. Girls wear navy blue
knickers and boys wear blue corduroy
pants. Her light blue socks designate
that she is a high school student.
Junior campers, grades three through
six, wear navy blue knee sox. In-
termediate campers wear red knee
sox and are in grades seven through
"The uniforms make it easy to tell
the campers from the visitors," ex-
plained Billie Thompson, a public
relations assistant at Interlochen.
"The camp is divided by sex and by
age. By wearing uniforms the kids
don't have to worry what they look
like. The staff also conforms to the
uniform, but females are allowed to
wear blue skirts. Red is the preferred
Thompson said there are about 20
performing areas at Interlochen.
"The majority of the camp is centered
around music, instrument and voice.
We teach any requested instrument.
Pamela Barr, in white, rehearses with cast members or "William's Window."
The drama students do major shows
and productions. There are about 450
performances during the summer.
About 400 of them are by the
"Our summer staff is about 1,000.
The faculty performs in recitals and
displays their work in the gallery"
As the high school band rehears-
ed in the Interlochen Bowl, Thompson
said, "lb attend Interlochen, all you
have to do is apply. All campers
declare a major. The junior campers
come to try out their talents. They
take talent exploration and try a dif-
ferent instrument each week.
"The intermediate campers get
into specialties and have supervised
practice. Every practice shed has a
piano. There are over 500 pianos here.
"A high school student would not
want to come if they weren't good at
something. There is strong competi-
tion musically and when a student
leaves here they will know if they are
good enough to make music a career."
Thompson said students have to
leave a lot behind to see if they can
make it, but they all respect each
other's talent. "You hear everything
from punk radio stations to the
classics. Music and dance follow more
rules than the art program, which is
Part of the Interlochen Center for
the Arts, the National Music Camp
was founded in 1928 by the late Dr.
Joseph E. Maddy. The Interlochen
Arts Academy was founded by Mad-
dy in 1962. "The academy is a boar-
ding school for grades nine to 12 that
offers programs in the arts," Thomp-