Mel Nieva is organizing Glee Camp this summer.

Mel Nieva is organizing Glee Camp this summer.

‘Glee Camp’ comes to the old Arts Centre

Mel Nieva is convinced that musical performance is all about confidence and being yourself.

The 30-year-old singer and music instructor remembers the vocal lessons she took from the Chilliwack Academy of Music, the guitar lessons from Jeff Bowman, and the piano instruction from Pauline Harms.

She grew up honing her musical chops in Chilliwack.

These days she lives in East Van and is paying it all forward.

She’s teaching music in West and North Vancouver, as well as offering a Summer Rock Camp experience for girls in North Van.

This summer she’s launching a Glee Camp from the old Arts Centre on Henderson.

“The trend in recent years is toward rock camp,” she explains. “This year I had the idea of doing a glee camp. I found tons of my vocal students had been inspired by the hit TV show, Glee.”

She wanted to bring a vocal camp experience to Chilliwack too, because she knows it has a thriving arts community. The Chilliwack Glee Camp will run July 25-29, for aspiring young musicians of all ages.

Nieva carefully picked the songs they’ll be doing.

“We’ll be doing one musical theatre tune, one contemporary pop tune, and one mashup, or medley of pop tunes.”

The plan is for her “gleeks” aged 11 and up, to do one hour of voice and one hour of dance daily, with a break in between.

“Chilliwack has great resources, like Jeff Bonner of Tractorgrease Studios. I think it’s the best way to get young people inspired, to get them used to performance and being filmed.”

Over the four days, they’ll practise singing with the ensemble, and singing with choreography, but it’s more than just practising. It’s also about raising self-esteem in the performers, Nieva underlined.

At the end of the camp, they’ll be recording with a live band behind them.

Learning to feel comfortable on stage is part of the training.

“It has to do with being confident while performing and being yourself,” she said. “I try to reiterate that and make it fun. I was always stressed out performing at the piano, so I want to make it fun for my kids.”

She’s also into providing a platform for young dance teachers and choreographers.

“A lot of people gave me that opportunity, so I feel the need to do it as well.”

It can be a transformative experience for young performers.

“Just put a drum kit behind any kid and suddenly they’re a rock star. It gives them momentum, and you can see the realization dawning on their faces.”

Chilliwack Glee Camp, July 25-29, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the old Arts Centre on Henderson. Registration deadline is Thursday, June 30. For details call Nieva 604-761-5669 or email

Just Posted

Rachel is a six month old Labrador retriever cross who was found at large. She is seen here at the Chilliwack SPCA on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Find Me My Furever Home – Rachel at the Chilliwack SPCA

6-month-old puppy found at large, now at Chilliwack SPCA, needs special home

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Volunteers will gather at South Gate Shopping Centre on Fathers Day before fanning out to help clean up downtown Chilliwack. (Facebook photo)
Kindness Chain Chilliwack Association organizes Fathers Day cleanup

Volunteers will spend 90 minutes fanning out to gather trash in downtown Chilliwack

Folks look through some of the items for sale during the Voice of Hope giant garage sale at 7350 Barrow Rd. in Chilliwack on Saturday, June 19, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Giant garage sale today in Chilliwack supports Kenyan widows, orphans

Funds go to Chilliwack-based Voice of Hope charity to improve quality of life for impoverished Kenyans

Ben Holwerda of the Chilliwack Spartan Swim Club competes in a swim meet at the Landing Leisure Centre on Feb. 12, 2011. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Chilliwack Landing Leisure Centre to close temporarily for scheduled maintenance

Pools, steam room, and sauna at Landing Leisure Centre closing for maintenance July 19 to Sep. 4

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Surrey Fire Service battled a dock fire along the Fraser River late Friday night (June 18). It was on Musqueam Drive, near Industrial Road, around 10:45 p.m. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
VIDEO: Fire engulfs pier on Surrey side of the Fraser River

Dock has reportedly been unused for a long time

People in Metro Vancouver can expect to experience a short wave of heat just in time for Father’s Day, according to Environment Canada. (Black Press Media files)
Short-lived heatwave headed for Metro Vancouver this weekend

Temperatures are expected to be up to 10 degrees higher than average Sunday and Monday

Most Read