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School Programs

Building Skills and a Love of Live Performance

Born out of and dedicated to its community, Weston Playhouse has a long history of valuing education and outreach. This connection with our neighbors and friends is part of who we are as a company, and it begins with introducing children to the joy of theatre through our exciting School Programs. Teamwork, self-confidence, and empathy are all part of engaging with theatre as a child, and we strive to grow a curious and well-rounded audience member from the roots up.

Early Stages: Our Elementary School Residency Program

Entering its thirteenth year in 2019, this beloved program gives local elementary school students the opportunity to experience the joy of creating their own theatrical performance while working alongside professional teaching artists on original and pre-written material. Early Stages uses theatre as a fun and interactive tool to enhance literacy, build confidence, and encourage creativity. The curriculum is also designed to meet Common Core narrative writing standards. 

During the month of May, a Weston teaching artist will work with students and teachers at your school to write, design and perform short plays/scenes, inspired by the family-friendly show that opens our summer season. The 2019 Early Stages program is geared toward 3rd to 5th graders and is focused on the musical The Phantom Tollbooth by Arnold Black, Sheldon Harnick, and Norton Juster, based on the children's book by Norton Juster. The 2019 residency runs the weeks of May 6th through June 1st. Please join us on Saturday, June 1st for the Playdate at the Playhouse, a day of family fun on the Weston Green, and a performance of work from Early Stages classes at the Weston Playhouse.

Playdate at the Playhouse

Vermont Young Playwrights Project: Our High School Residency Program

Each winter, a Weston teaching artist guides high school students in writing their own original one-act plays. Over six weeks, the professional playwright/teaching artist leads three in-school sessions where students learn about dramatic structure and elements of plays, and receive a constructive analysis of their work in a supportive group environment. While all participating students will experience the pride of completing a play, six selected young playwrights will see their work brought to life by experienced actors under professional direction on the Playhouse Main Stage. For more information, contact Rachel Liff, Artistic Assocaite/Education Coordinator, at rliff@westonplayhouse.org or (802) 824-8167 x 104. 

Curious about our partners? Click the logos below to check out our partners for Young Playwrights, as well as some great online resources for young writers!

The Vermont Young Playwrights Project may be on set dates, but to keep writing all year long, check out the Young Writers Project, an online community of young writers and mentors, with writing prompts, contests, and more!

Weston's Young Playwrights program is produced in conjunction with the Flynn Center and Vermont Stage Company, and is made possible in part by Creative Connections Arts Fund of the Vermont Community Foundation.

 

Teachers Workshop: Held Annually for Teachers in Vermont and Greater New England

Teachers on stage performing an excerptThe 2019 Teachers Workshop will be held at the Weston Playhouse at Walker Farm on Tuesday April 9th from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

2019 Teachers Workshop: Indecent

Join fellow educators from around the state for a day of professional learning in a fun, creative environment. The 2019 Teachers Workshop will explore the life and work of Paula Vogel, dive into the themes of Indecent, and help teachers discover how to make the play come alive in the classroom. This workshop will prepare teachers for our October School Matinee production of Indecent, the fifth play in Weston's American Masters series.

The day includes a keynote address by professor Ellen Kaplan of Smith College, a conversation with Executive Artistic Director Susanna Gellert about the fall production, and an interactive workshop with professional actor and teaching artist Bronwyn Sims. Teachers earn professional learning credit and certificates of participation are issued upon completion.

Download the 2019 application here!

Tuesday, April 9, 2018
9:00 am – 3:00 pm. 
Weston Playhouse at Walker Farm, 705 Main St, Weston, Vermont
Cost: $65. Includes a professional study guide, coffee, tea, breakfast buffet, and lunch.

SCHOOL MATINEES

More than one thousand students from middle schools, high schools, home schools, and colleges throughout Vermont and greater New England are served each year by our School Matinee program. These special fall performances are made available to school groups at heavily discounted and subsidized prices and are further enhanced by printed study guides and post-show discussions.

This year's School Matinee production, Indecent. This deeply moving work charts the history of a group of artists who risked their lives to put on a play. Inspired by the true story of a Broadway production whose company was arrested on opening night, Indecent follows the writer, his play, and the people who fought to perform it against all odds. It transports the audience from a small town in Poland to the great theaters of Europe, Ellis Island, Broadway, and a Polish Ghetto during World War II, making the text ripe for analysis in English, theatre, history, and American studies classes.

Download the registration form here.

For information contact education@westonplayhouse.org or call (802) 824-8167 x104.