19th Annual WiseWrite Festival to Showcase Young Playwrights 3/30 at The Rep

Works by fifth-grade students from Wyland and Hudson Elementary Schools enjoy the spotlight at The Rep on Monday, March 30, 2015 for the Nineteenth Annual WiseWrite Festival.

Presented continuously on the Browning Mainstage of the Loretto-Hilton Center for the Performing Arts, 130 Edgar Road (on the campus of Webster University), from 9:30 am until 1:30 pm, the event is free and open to the public.

For more information about the WiseWrite Festival, call (314) 968-7340.

Each year The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, in collaboration with Springboard, sends teaching artists into area schools to help fifth-grade students improve literacy and written communication skills by learning to write plays. Students are exposed to all aspects of the creative process and also introduced to the world of the theatre by working with teaching artists and through performances by The Rep's Imaginary Theatre Company.

At the end of the program, each student playwright receives a published copy of his or her own play and, as a celebration of the hard work invested by the more than 100 young playwrights, attends the WiseWrite festival at The Rep. During the festival, volunteer theatre professionals and drama students perform selected plays. Also in attendance are proud parents and friends, including the fourth-grade classes that will participate in next year's program.

The WiseWrite playwriting program is a unique collaboration between The Rep and Springboard. Springboard provides innovative educational resources that develop children's critical thinking, creativity, collaboration and communication skills through the arts, sciences and humanities. Springboard programs reach more than 44,000 students annually, directly supporting school curriculum and offering diverse and creative learning strategies in schools and other venues.

The WiseWrite program is just one of The Rep's many programs designed to introduce young people to the magic and power of live theatre and to making the arts an important, integral part of their lives. Each year, nearly 30,000 bi-state area students participate in an array of theatrical activities, including student matinees of Mainstage productions (supported by curriculum-appropriate Study Guides), classroom visits by a corps of experienced volunteer docents, performances by The Rep's touring Imaginary Theatre Company and more.

WiseWrite is presented with generous assistance from Mrs. Mary Ann Lee, DeWitt and Caroline Van Evera Foundation, Clifford Willard Gaylord Foundation, The Dana Brown Charitable Trust, Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation, Gretchen Straub in honor of Jean Lange, DCA Family Foundation and Tom and Cathy Sakiyama.

For more information about the WiseWrite program, the Nineteenth Annual Young Playwrights' Festival, or any of The Rep's educational programs, call (314) 968-7340 or visit www.repstl.org.

Founded in 1966, The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis is a fully professional theatrical operation belonging to the League of Resident Theatres, The League of St. Louis Theatres and is a constituent member of Theatre Communications Group, Inc., the national service organization for the not-for-profit professional theatre. It operates independently of, but under a mutually beneficial agreement with, Webster University. The Rep operates under an agreement between the League of Resident Theatres and Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States. The Rep hires directors and choreographers who are members of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers and stagehands who are members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees. Financial assistance for this theatre has been provided by the Arts and Education Council of Greater St. Louis; the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission and the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency, which believes that a great nation deserves great art. The Rep is also grateful for support by more than 1,100 generous individuals, families, corporations and foundations throughout the communities we serve. Thank you.

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