A tip of the hat, a shake of the hand, appreciation, recognition, thanks; however you want to say it, sign it, or express it, SCT is here to say we are thankful for YOU.
As we welcome July, we are taking a moment to look back at an extraordinary—though unprecedented—year and acknowledge that we could not be here without each and every person who has shared their support of SCT and theatre for young audiences.
So, please join us in an epic exclamation of thanks…
TO OUR DRAMA SCHOOL FAMILIES:
You are the flame that keeps creativity alive and bright! It is because of your support that SCT was able to successfully bring our Summer Drama School programming online and...
TO OUR EDUCATORS:
We are constantly inspired by your resiliency and leadership. Because you recognize the importance of live theatre and theater education, SCT served over 34,000 students from 311 schools across the region through School Field Trips, Arts Based Learning, and Community Engagement in the past school year. Thanks to your support, our community’s youth experienced the transformational power of live theatre.
TO OUR TICKET BUYERS & SUBSCRIBERS:
Though our Mainstage season was cut short, we are thankful to have shared the beauty and artistry of Black Beauty, the thrill in experiencing Corduroy’s adventures, and the clever re-telling of Snow White. Thank you for celebrating the joy of live theatre by gathering and sharing the magic of SCT with your families and the young people in your lives.
TO OUR DONORS:
You embody the values and mission of SCT. You are the drama school families, ticket buyers, educators, board members, alumni, and community advocates who represent the many reasons why SCT will make it through this time to continue bringing theatre and theatre education to young audiences.
Yes, You! If you are reading this, regardless of how you have shown your support for SCT, we are grateful. Your dedication is unmatched, and we could not impact the lives of students, young people, and families across Washington State and in our Puget Sound Region without you. We look forward to the time that we can bask in the joy of live theatre, together.
As part of its expansive list of virtual Drama School offerings for summer 2020, Seattle Children’s Theatre is pleased to introduce a new slate of classes geared towards social justice and creating space for underrepresented voices. Due to the evolving status of COVID-19 related restrictions in Washington State and across the country, SCT is hosting Summer Drama School classes in an exclusively virtual setting and is using this position as an opportunity to reach, elevate, and champion new voices.
“SCT continues to examine our internal practices toward becoming an anti-racist organization and better serve our youth. We have a long way to go, but in this necessary time we hear our community and vow to continue serving by doing our part,” says Johamy Morales, SCT’s Director of Education. “As a leader in the arts community it is our responsibility to uphold the voices and stories that continue to be underrepresented in our field, and to champion more equitable access to programming, on our stages, behind the curtain, in our classrooms, and as we engage and work in service to our community.”
Among the new slate of classes is ‘The Art of Drag’, a one week class designed for LGBTQ+ youth and their allies which will explore the cultural and historical significance of Drag Performance while teaching students how to create their own drag persona. Taught by local Seattle Drag Queen, Isis, and Drag King, Dan D'Lite, this class aims to create a comfortable space for LGBTQ+ youth to grow and create.
Also included is Rise Up: Triple Threat, Rise Up: Short Plays & Stand Up: Playwrights for Change, a series of classes designed for students who identify as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color where they can explore and create works written for them and aimed to ignite the power of social change through different areas of drama. Through the playwriting course, students will learn the fundamentals of storytelling based on their own experience. A variety of Triple Threat courses will celebrate musicals like The Wiz, In the Heights, and Allegiance written specifically for communities of color and will be instructed by BIPOC teaching artists.
Finally, a variety of Sensory Drama classes are being offered and are designed for students with disabilities, particularly those with sensory processing challenges, to explore drama with accommodations that meet their needs. Visual schedules, captioning, ASL, and accommodating motor movement will be used as the foundation for these classes and led by Teaching Artist and SCT’s Sensory Drama Specialist, Maddie Napel.
To make all offerings as accessible as possible, financial assistance is being offered to those who meet federal guidelines through the simple process of a one-time application. SCT will evaluate these applications on a case by case basis depending on the needs of the family with the goal of being as accommodating as possible. Payment plans will also be made available for those who may need it.
“It is our goal to embrace the opportunities provided by these unprecedented challenges to better connect with families and the world,” said Morales, adding that 24 students have registered for June classes who live outside of Washington State. “Because classes are being held online, we can reach students from new communities and invite them to learn through our expansive curriculum, including our new and diverse offerings which allow educational space for underrepresented voices.”
SCT’s virtual summer classes are available for students 3.5-18 years old. To learn more about SCT’s summer programming, including July and August registration dates, please visit our website. For updates on SCT’s evolving position on COVID-19 and how it is affecting the theatre and it’s programming, please visit our blog.
Dear SCT Community,
I write today to share that after extensive conversations with SCT’s Board of Trustees and following the guidance from the CDC and King County officials, we have made the difficult decision to forgo producing a 20-21 season. Simply put, we cannot commit resources to produce a season while long-term restrictions and closures remain uncertain.
We have been able to keep our options open thanks to our dedicated community of donors, patrons, and Seattle’s amazing collection of supportive funding agencies and foundations, but the reality of the coronavirus pandemic demands that we slow down. As a result, the Board of Trustees and I have made the difficult decision to eliminate 75% of all staff including our production team, teaching artists, administrative and artistic staff. Effective June 22, 18 employees and a reduced teaching artist faculty will remain on staff and our focus for the year will be to support young people, families, and educators through SCT Drama School, Arts Based Learning and Community Engagement. We are also re-committing our efforts to create more equitable programming and inclusive environments for our patrons, students and staff when we reopen.
Like so many of us, this year has been extraordinarily difficult, but despite our current situation, we are optimistic for what the future holds. These decisions were made with the mission of SCT held close, so that we can remain nimble, adapt to the changing world, and emerge financially sound when we return to the stage.
As we have all grappled with the significant losses to the arts and culture sector, it has become apparent that theatre is more important than ever; it builds empathy, ignites joy, amplifies the voices of young people and inspires confidence in our shared hope for the future. We need these things now and in the days to come, and we look forward to celebrating the art making that has been a part of this community for 45 years. When the time is right, I hope you will join us when we reopen and begin SCT’s next chapter.
If you are a ticket holder, educator or drama school family that has rolled your 19-20 tickets into on-account funds or a gift certificate for future use, click here to learn about how we have expanded the ways you can use your funds.
The show must go on(line)! SCT is pleased to announce that despite not being able to gather in person, we are continuing our Summer Internship Program in conjunction with our virtual Summer Drama School Classes. Please join us in welcoming the 9 talented college students and recent graduates who will be assisting SCT virtually this summer as Teaching Artist and Arts Administration Interns. We are excited to have them aboard!
SCT Summer Intern Class of 2020:
Emma Bentsen - Teaching Artist Intern
Jordan Ben-Shmuel - Teaching Artist Intern
Celeste Bernstein - Arts Administration Intern
Victoria Hernandez - Teaching Artist Intern
Gabriela Tatone - Teaching Artist Intern
Chloe Tower - Teaching Artist Intern
Cassie Paulsen - Teaching Artist Intern
Fabiano Nardone - Teaching Artist Intern
Matias Rafael Cardinale - Teaching Artist Intern
Celebrate PRIDE with one of SCT's new virtual summer classes, The Art of Drag! Designed for LGBTQ+ youth and their allies, this class will examine the history and cultural significance of Drag Performance while learning how to create a drag persona, complete with different looks and personalities. Taught by local Drag Queen, Isis, and Drag King, Dan D'Lite, this class will have you looking good and feeling great to love the skin you're in!
Meet your instructors:
Chip Sherman (they/them) has been performing in and outside the art of drag for 20+ years. In the theatre you may have seen them as a Core Company Member at ACT in our productions ofRomeo + Juliet, Christmas Carol, and Alex and Aris, and here at SCT in And In This Corner: Cassius Clay and most recently as the titular character in Corduroy. In drag you may have seen them moonlighting as Isis in and out of the drag duo, LüChi, in their resident weeklies at Rplace; TWINSday w/ LüChi, Thirsty Thursday w/ Mila Skyy, and Lashes w/ the Lashes Cast, at the Kremwerk Komplex; in their resident monthlies Noir w/ Skarlett Dior Black and London Bradshaw, and QiQi Cabaret w/ CarLarans.
Photo by Keith Johnson/Parade Images
Laurie Lynch (they/them/she/her) is a queer artist-activist, drag performer, educator, playwright. They received their BA in Theatre from CSULA and their MFA in Contemporary Performance from Naropa University. Laurie taught performance in higher education, developed self scripting courses for LGBTQ Youth and performed all over Denver, CO prior to moving to the PNW. They were a 2018 Intiman Theatre Emerging artist where they wrote and performed a piece entitled, “Dandyland: Queering Motherhood One Day at a Time.” Laurie performs in Drag as Dan D’Lite.
Photo courtesy of the artist
Join SCT in utilizing this list of resources to continue your family's learning and education on racial equity.
Know of other resources that should be included? Let us know in the comments below.
From the SCT Community:
Book Lists with Books for Youth of All Ages:
Podcasts for Parents and Guardians:
Resources and Articles For Parents and Guardians:
Artists and Arts Organizations:
In the midst of this pandemic, and in the wake of the tragic death of George Floyd, it has become more vital than ever for our society to come to terms with the systemic racism that continues to hold our systems and country. We feel sadness for those who continue to lose their loved ones to injustice, and frustration for the lack of leadership our country has shown in a time of need. At SCT we support those speaking up for equal rights and we, alongside their voices, demand change.
SCT recommits to the examination of our internal practices and will continue the difficult work of becoming an anti-racist organization. We do not have all the answers and we know that as an institution we have a long way to go, but in this necessary time we vow to do our part. We will use our privilege and leadership to uphold the voices and stories which continue to be so underrepresented in our field, and to champion more equitable access to programming, while upholding SCT’s values on our stages, behind the curtain, through our classrooms, and as we engage and work in the communities we serve.
It is our responsibility to show up in these conversations that will impact our communities for generations to come. We commit to working towards ensuring that all children see themselves reflected in our work and have access to creative environments where they can learn and grow in community. To all young people—especially those of color—you deserve better.
Amid the global pandemic which has forced the temporary closure of many performing arts venues, 16 youth-serving theatres across the country have come together to share a national tribute, performed by children within each community, to honor frontline workers.
The project titled So Many Heroes--pitched by Jeff Revels, Artistic Director at Orlando Repertory Theatre, led by Kathryn Van Meter on behalf of SCT, and features the work of local artists Rob Witmer and Richard Gray—empowers and amplifies the voices of young people during this time.
“We will be forever changed by our current events, and forever connected and bound together by our shared experience of isolation. As we begin to redefine what it is to share space, there is hope in our future because we are resilient…just like the young people in our communities,” said Van Meter.
Revels, knew that the network of theatres for young audiences could mobilize this tremendous effort. Together, Revels, Van Meter, Witmer and Gray began collaborating on what the national tribute could be.
“We have heard from the doctors and politicians, but not much from the kids of America. Writing musicals for young audiences has taught me how observant kids are. They see everything and absorb it all. They have been processing this like crazy, so, when asked to write this tribute, I knew it had to be in the direct, honest language that kids use,” said Gray, emphasizing the importance of hearing from young people during this time.
The tribute, which will be released on Friday May 22, can be viewed on the participating theatre’s Facebook pages at 6 a.m. (HST), 9 a.m. (PST), 11 a.m. (CT) or 12 p.m. (EST):
Adventure Theatre MTC (Glen Echo, MD)
Childsplay Theatre (Tempe, AZ)
Children’s Theatre of Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
Dallas Children's Theater (Dallas, TX)
First Stage (Milwaukee, WI)
Growing Stage (Netcong, NJ),
Honolulu Theatre for Youth (Honolulu, HI)
Imagination Stage (Bethesda, MD),
Lexington Children's Theatre (Lexington, KY)
Northwest Children's Theater & School (Portland, OR)
Oregon Children’s Theatre (Portland, OR)
Orlando Repertory Theatre (Orlando, FL
Seattle Children’s Theatre (Seattle, WA).
The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati (Cincinnati, OH)
Trike Theatre (Bentonville, Arkansas)
Wheelock Family Theatre (Boston, MA)
“Children are at the center of so many of our organization’s missions,” said Van Meter, “and it’s a great honor to provide young people with a platform and opportunity to hear their voices rise during this unprecedented time.”
Founded in 1975, Seattle Children's Theatre (SCT) is an international leader in theatre for young audiences, producing more than 270 plays and 116 world premieres. SCT’s mission is to provide children of all ages with access to professional theatre, with a focus on new works, and theatre education.
This Tuesday, May 5th, marked the beginning of GiveBIG and Giving Tuesday. We thank our community for making arts funding a priority and coming together to support our region’s non-profit organizations and choosing to GiveBIG to SCT.
During this time of generosity, we have invited patrons, actors, staff and students to share their SCT Story. While the support provided during this time will give us the resources we need to continue to impact the lives of the young people – we want to hear how SCT has influenced our community.
Hear our community's stories below and share your SCT Story with us by posting a video with the hashtag #MySCTStory and tagging SCT!
annelih hamilton (she/Her)