There are few goals for the Fountain more gratifying and rewarding than reaching out and connecting with young people. We enjoyed that realization on Monday morning when 70 students from Glendale High School attended a special performance of our hit play My Mañana Comes. The cast then connected with the students in a warm and honest conversation following the performance, discussing issues of the play and sharing insights into being a professional actor and the artistic process.
Before the performance, the students gathered in our upstairs cafe. They muched snacks, checked their smartphones and chatted excitedly with each other. For many students, this would be the first live performance of a professional play that they’ve seen in their young lives.
At the 11am curtain time, the students rushed downstairs and entered the theatre. They took their seats. The lights went down. The excited buzz quieted. And the transformative experience of live theatre began.
“School districts are being forced to cut arts education in classrooms, ” admitted Fountain Co-Artistic Director Stephen Sachs. “Now more than ever, it’s up to non-profit arts organizations like ours to fill that gap so young people can benefit from discovering the arts for themselves.”
Monday’s special performance was made possible through Theatre as a Learning Tool, the Fountain Theatre’s educational outreach program that makes theatre accessible to students throughout Southern California. Our thanks to teacher Barbara Berent for working with us in bringing the students from Glendale High School. For us, there are few things more important than introducing young people to the benefit of live theatre.