CPT's Teen STEP Program Heads Out on Tour This Summer
Cleveland Public Theatre's (CPT) Executive Artistic Director Raymond Bobgan presents the return of CPT's celebrated Student Theatre Enrichment Program (STEP), Cleveland's longest-running arts and job training program for teens. STEP celebrates its 25th year with the latest original play, Color the City, created and performed by the 2019 STEP cast and tech ensemble, on tour to Cleveland city parks from July 26 - August 6. Color the City is inspired by a South American Los Andes story, Huatiacuri, the Story of a Mountain.
The citizens of the Black and White City have forgotten the Colorful Mountain, once their landmark and prized jewel with otherworldly powers. As the wealthy White family seeks a cure for their sick father, a colorful woman from the Mountain, named Star, roams the city to unlock a mysterious dream. Can a black and white land rediscover the beauty and richness of colors? Led by Bolivian artist Diego Aramburo, Color the City showcases Cleveland youth as they work to build a brighter and more colorful world. Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy free theatre in the park!
CPT's Student Theatre Enrichment Program (STEP) is a rigorous arts-based program that provides hands-on job training, engaging Cleveland youth in a powerful 8-week intensive that focuses on excellence in performance, play creation, writing, production, and set design/construction. Students ages 14-19, with little or no previous performance experience, are eligible for participation, and earn money while learning and practicing valuable job skills such as timeliness, communication, commitment, and teamwork. Under the guidance of CPT artistic mentors, teens develop an original play and then tour it to public parks throughout the city of Cleveland. The majority of these teens come from families defined as low-income, live within the city limits, attend public schools, and are artists of color. Since its beginning in 1994, STEP has received multiple awards and recognitions including those from the City of Cleveland, The President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, and the National Endowment for the Arts. STEP is the longest running arts-based, job-training program in Cleveland and is an international model for engaging youth. Through STEP, teens see themselves as a positive and inspirational force, and watch as their work has an impact on the larger Cleveland community.