The first day of school for the new year is about to start…and we are getting ready for it!
The Young Playwrights’ Lab program begins its 10th year working with and in the schools in Bethlehem and Allentown (and beyond). As the YPL Coordinator, I’ve been busy contacting the schools in preparation for the new academic year as well as looking back through old files to compile information as we celebrate the decade mark for this amazing arts-in-education program. What have I found?
Over 10 years we’ve been at 20 different schools, and served over 668 students!
That’s a lot of teaching. That’s a lot of plays. That’s a lot of creativity.
In 2002 the YPL program was the glimmer in the eyes of Sue Lucrezi of BASD teaching at Donegan Elementary and Mark McKenna, former Artistic Director of Touchstone. The very next year it began in earnest at Freemansburg Elementary, with Jennie Gilrain, former Touchstone ensemble member, helping lead the charge. It has been at Freemansburg each and every year since then–expanding upward and outward to other elementary and middle schools throughout the region.
Already this summer we have taught two programs–at Lincoln Leadership Academy Charter School and Harrison Morton Middle School in Allentown. Now we are readying ourselves for the Fall start of programs at schools like Calypso Elementary and Broughal Middle School in Bethlehem and Central Elementary in Allentown.
For the Spring, we’re already looking ahead to programs at Nitschmann Middle School, Farmersville Elementary, Lincoln Elementary, Fountain Hill Elementary in Bethlehem and back to Central Elementary again. And there are more waiting to confirm!
So…it is going to be a busy and wonder-filled year of teaching here at Touchstone Theatre. All we have to do is get our new pencils and lunch boxes.
See you at the back-to-school sales!
Mary Wright, YPL Coordinator