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Education Round Up: Washington, DC Theatre Companies Bring Life to the Past

Washington, DC is hardly the country's most bustling metropolitan hub, but for a small district carved into the Virginia/Maryland border, the region boasts one of the liveliest and engaging arts scenes.

The connection to history is unparalleled, and theatrical companies bring life to that legacy as they educate future generations on the power of art.


Education Round Up: Washington, DC Theatre Companies Bring Life to the PastArena Stage

Voices of Now: This four night festival celebrates the work of nine ensembles featuring students ages 11-18. The companies present autobiographical plays that examine the issues most relevant to their communities such as multiculturalism, gun violence, and self-image.

Moving Stories: Moving Stories is a program designed for preschool and kindergarten students. Teaching artists come into the classroom and explore children's literature through song, movement, sign language and more to promote creative drama and literacy at a young age.

Student Matinees: Student matinees include a study guide provided by Arena Stage, two in-class visits from teaching artists, a teacher orientation session, curriculum suggestions for integrating the experience into classwork, and a post-show talkback with the cast following the performance.

Workshops & Residencies: Arena Stage offers schools the chance to partner in creating workshops and residencies specifically tailored to their needs. Teaching artists are available to work with any skill level to bring theatre into the classroom.

Internships & Fellowships: Students and young professionals have the opportunity to receive world experience and mentorship from Arena Stage's best through internships and fellowships. Departments include artistic and technical production, arts administration, arts education and community outreach

Education Round Up: Washington, DC Theatre Companies Bring Life to the PastSignature Theatre

Stage One: Stage One is a two week musical theatre intensive for students ages 14-17 years old. Students participate in daily masterclasses with award winning artists in the DC area and receive personalized instruction in acting, dancing, and voice.

Signature in Schools: this multifaceted program includes workshops centered around English, Social studies, and Theatre classes. High school tudents work with Signature teaching artists to create an original play with students as cast, crew, and co-designers while being mentored by professionals.

In-School Residencies: Signature's residencies are all customized to fit the school's needs running from a single day to a whole year. Teaching artists work with classes of all disciplines to provide arts and theatre training.

Apprentice Program: Signature offers hands-on professional experience to young performers, playwrights, directors and designers in grades 10-12. Apprentices have the opportunity for mentorship, pre-show lessons, workshops, shadowing and more.

Spring Break Workshop: This program for ages 11-14 consists of acting training, with opportunities to build musical theater and technical theater skills as well. The program is entirely flexible giving students the option to book a single day or all five days. Aftercare is provided as well.

Education Round Up: Washington, DC Theatre Companies Bring Life to the PastStudio Theatre

Young Actors Ensemble: Part of the Studio's Acting Conservatory, this 3-6 week intensive teaches voice, movement, ensemble, musical theatre, and scene and monologue work. The program culminates in a performance of both an individual and group work. The Studio offers scholarships for the program on a need-basis.

Studio In Play: The Studio's student matinee program is an all-inclusive experience. Teachers are provided with in-depth study guides introducing students to the context of the play as well as offering teachers options for incorporating the work into the curriculum. Teaching artists then bring an in-class workshop to students. Following the performance, students participate in a talkback with the cast.

Apprenticeships and Internships: 50-week apprenticeships are offered to provide real-world experience and training to young professionals. Full-time internships are offered to students during the summer as well as part-time internships in the fall and spring. These include educational seminars and social activities alongside job training.

Education Round Up: Washington, DC Theatre Companies Bring Life to the PastFord's Theatre

Teacher Preview Workshops: Teachers are provided with a free dinner over which they network with others and attend a performance of the current show. The workshops focus on integrating the production into the classroom and ways to engage students with the themes.

Student Matinees: Schools qualify for free or heavily discounted tickets to weekday matinees. The students attend a matinee followed by a post-show discussion. Teachers are offered carefully tailored lessons to help students understand the show.

Oratory: Ford's offers a series of opportunities for students to improve their public speaking and performance skills. These include the National Oratory Fellowship which helps teachers improve their public speaking and public speaking teaching skills, the Oratory Residency and Festival which focuses on grades 3-8, and the Lincoln Online Oratory Project which is open to schools across the country and culminates in a project done by the whole class.

Education Round Up: Washington, DC Theatre Companies Bring Life to the PastFolger Shakespeare Theatre

Teacher Membership: Teachers have the option to join the Forsooth! Community giving them access to exclusive content from Folger. This includes lesson plans, digital images, livestreamed interviews, videos, teaching workshops, and discounts on tickets.

Folger Shakespeare Summer Institute: This professional development opportunity is offered to local high school teachers. It is a one-week intensive studying commonly performed Shakespeare plays and includes lectures and seminars, curriculum work, writing, and performance workshops.

Shakespeare in Action Workshops: These on-site workshops are meant for grades 1-12. Students explore Shakespearean texts through customized hand-on performance-based activities.

Student Matinees: Student Matinees include a pre-show tour of the Great Hall where students explore the current exhibits, teaching resources for classroom work, and a post-show discussion.

Student Festivals: Folger offers two festivals, one for secondary school students and one for elementary school students. These festivals include study of text and performances of abridged works. The Secondary School Festival includes loosely judged awards following the performances.

Classroom Residencies: Various Classroom Residencies are offered both locally and remotely. Teaching artists assist students in exploring the intricacies of Shakespeare through matinee performances, stage combat workshops and more while offering teachers professional development opportunities.

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From This Author Julie Musbach

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