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Posts Tagged ‘high school internships’

Today was the first full day of the 2013 Spring Road Conference. I am a big fan of this annual conference, as it provides the chance to meet up face to face with Broadway Across America colleagues and BAA partners from all over North America who I usually only get to interface with on a virtual basis, as well as reconnect with others in the industry, and meet new people as well. This conference is also a time for all of us to check in regarding where the industry stands, how far things have come, and how far we still need to go.

Artist: Ken Fallin

Artist: Ken Fallin

Today’s first panel, for instance, covered the continued lack of diversity of theatre audiences. Panelists from different touring markets and different areas of the commercial theatre industry introduced some exciting programs they are currently instituting to try and address this issue.

Sue Frost, Producer at Junkyard Dog Productions and member of The Broadway League’s Education and Community Engagement Committee presented a moving video about The Broadway League’s exciting, new internship program for high school students that introduces the participants to the many different jobs in the theatre industry, and Megan Riegel, President and CEO of The Peace Center for the Performing Arts showed footage of a program called Peace Voices, an outreach initiative that encourages both youths and adults from different socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds to write poems on particular themes and perform them publicly for their family, friends, teachers, and peers. While not directly Broadway-related, Peace Voices is an empowering experience that encourages both youths and adults to believe in themselves, connect with who they are, and express themselves freely in a performance setting.

These presentations were moving and inspiring, and hopefully these and other initiatives will connect with people who are unfamiliar with theatre and Broadway to make them feel welcome and turn them into regular theater-goers, as well as expose them to a whole new world of career options.

Looking forward to bringing you another update in the next day or so!

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