Supporting youth by fostering a loving, safe, creative space for self-discovery is central to the STAGES Youth Theater mission. Now more than ever in our 14-year history, we know young people need us so they can stay connected, creative, and centered amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
But we are also looking beyond that. What we’ve learned over the past year is that the possibilities for youth theater are limitless — whether we are together or apart. STAGES Youth Theater is doing the most innovative work we’ve ever done and we can’t do it without support from people like you.
Our tight-knit STAGES staff and Board moved swiftly to respond to the ever-shifting realities of 2020. Here’s a snapshot of our new normal:
- We’re finding new ways to make theater. When our performance space in Portland’s Woodfords Corner “went dark,” it illuminated a new path to capturing student performances on film. By harnessing new technologies, collaborating with new personnel, and adjusting to new protocols, STAGES has captured and distributed eight films (and two audio plays) of student work — with more to come in 2021!
- We embrace being online. Virtual programs are not a temporary inconvenience, but rather a chance to explore, create, and relate in new ways. New online educational programs, like the STAGES PlayBoxes, are designed to live online, reach new families, and thrive long past the pandemic.
- We offer tuiton-free programming. Our new “At-Home Adventures” (A-HA!) reached hundreds of homebound students through 23 tuition-free class series this year. STAGES is committed to expanding the reach and accessibility of our offerings, and this is an important step toward that goal.
Of course, for our small non-profit, 2020 was not without sobering challenges. Like many theater organizations, we face financial uncertainty and deepening concern for our our community as we near the one-year mark of the pandemic.
But we can honestly say that despite those hurdles (or almost certainly because of them) our staff and Board have never been this energized or inspired. We’ve accomplished amazing things this year and set new, ambitious goals for ourselves. As we begin a new year, we know STAGES will never be the same — and we think that’s a good thing.
Your contribution of any amount supports our continued innovation and expansion, so our inclusive, non-competitive, visionary theater programming can reach more Maine kids right now, when they need it most. And it is an investment in the beautiful future we see on the other side.
Your contribution of any amount will help STAGES Youth Theater connect with more young people through the pandemic and far beyond!
DONATE TO STAGES YOUTH THEATER
If you prefer to mail a gift, checks can be made payable to “STAGES/Portland Youth Theater” and sent to: STAGES Youth Theater, 202 Woodford St, Portland, ME 04103