NYC Student Playwrights Showcase Work at the Pearl as Part of 'LeAp OnStage' Program Today; Plays Published by Samuel French

NYC Student Playwrights Showcase Work at the Pearl as Part of 'LeAp OnStage' Program Today; Plays Published by Samuel French

Students from 10 NYC public schools, whose plays will be published by renowned publisher Samuel French, will showcase their original plays and perform them at the Pearl Theatre as part of the LeAp OnStage program. LeAp OnStage, created by Learning through an Expanded Arts Program (LeAp), provides the opportunity for over 500 underserved and culturally isolated public school students to participate in an engaging and comprehensive theater program. Since 2006, LeAp OnStage has transformed the lives of over 4,000 inner-city middle school and high school students, by inspiring youth to actively engage with the arts and opening up college and career opportunities in theater.

Over the past few months, LeAp OnStage has worked with students in 10 schools citywide, who would not otherwise have access to educational arts programs or the opportunity to participate in a high-profile and culturally eye-opening theater production. The students participated in intensive classroom workshops led by LeAp theater teachers and artistic directors, learning skills that include playwriting, acting and directing, as well as production and design techniques. Students wrote moving, original plays-both comedies and dramas-which spoke to issues that the students considered personally important. Then, one play from each school was selected by Broadway professionals to be developed into a full production.

Tonight, June 10 at 7:00pm

Student plays from the following schools will be performed:

Repertory Company High School for Theatre Arts (Manhattan)

Health Opportunities High School (Bronx)

Lower Manhattan Arts Academy (Manhattan)

Bronx Early College Academy for Teaching and Learning (Bronx)

Fordham High School for the Arts (Bronx)

Wednesday, June 11 at 7:00pm

Student plays from the following schools will be performed:

Philippa Schuyler Middle School I.S. 383 (Brooklyn)

Urban Assembly School of Business for Young Women (Manhattan)

High School for Public Service: Heroes of Tomorrow (Brooklyn)

Hillcrest High School (Queens)

I.S. 141Q The Steinway (Brooklyn)

"A program like this inspires our students to achieve their goals, find their voices, and gain an insider's look into the world of Broadway-opportunities that they wouldn't have otherwise been able to experience," said Alice Krieger, Director of LeAp OnStage.

LeAp OnStage is a comprehensive theater program for economically disadvantaged New York City public school students. Each year, Leap OnStage partners with the theater community to serve students in New York City public schools, providing them with a high-quality educational arts program and teaching playwriting, performing, directing, and theater appreciation. During the program, students write and perform plays, visit with Broadway luminaries-including playwrights, dramaturges, directors, and actors, which have included Scarlett Johansson, Live Schreiber and Kerry Washington-and attend Tony-Award winning Broadway productions. The collaboration between LeAp and the Broadway community inspires talented and motivated young people to use their creativity, develop their talents as young artists, and open their eyes to the opportunities LeAp provides in the world of theater.

Learning through an Expanded Arts Program (LeAp) is committed to improving the quality of public education through a unique hands-on, arts-based approach to teaching the core curriculum. Since 1977, LeAp has provided more than two million NYC students in kindergarten through 12th grade with music, dance, theater, and visual arts programs that are integrated into academic instruction. LeAp offers in-school residencies, afterschool activities, teacher trainings, parent workshops, and assembly programs to schools citywide, conducts programs in hospitals, shelters, and cultural institutions and develops educational materials. LeAp empowers students to reach their full potential.

Performances run Tuesday, June 10th and Wednesday, June 11th at 7:00 p.m. (two nights of performances)
10 winning student plays will be performed on June 10th and 11th (five per day - each play lasts about 10 minutes) at the Pearl Theatre (555 West 42nd St, New York, NY 10036). For more information, visit www.leapnyc.org.

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