Arts, Culture & Humanities
Adolescents/Youth (13-19 years)
Children (4-12 years)
People/Families with of People with Disabilities
Participation in the performing arts is a way for students to learn about themselves and others. By experiencing and sharing human interaction through artistic endeavors, they become more human. They learn to define and enjoy beauty and to value creativity and the creative mind. Through participation in theater productions, students develop commitment, responsibility, empathy, self-esteem, and pride.
The arts serve to provide balance in any educational program of studies:
"Qualifications for admission to Yale College include not only the reasonable well-defined areas of academic achievement and special skills in non-academic areas, abut also the less tangible qualities of capacity for involvement, commitment, and personal growth. The arts offer remarkable opportunities for the exercise of these qualities." -David Worth, Dean of Admissions, Yale University
The Venue Theatre has worked with hundreds of children from over 25 schools in the Denver and Foothills since its inception. In 2020, the majority of live theatre, performing arts, and in-person community events were placed on hiatus due to COVID-19. Yet, children in the Foothills and Denver area community still crave the enrichment and socialization that live artmaking offers. Students have looked to The Venue as a refuge during a time when in-person congregation opportunities are minimal, all while safety is a top priority. The Venue Theatre has offered small, safety aware classes encourage students to learn communication skills through physical and emotional expression, as well as coping mechanisms during this unprecedented time. Current program testimonials may be found under "Overview". Previous testimonials are below:
"Thank you for all you have done for me. You have no idea how thankful I am to be able to participate in your theater. Before I started theatre, I was shy and nervous. I would never sing in front of anyone. Ever since I started theater at the Venue, I even participated in the school Talent show. You have given me the confidence to share my voice with the world. This will be my 3rd year at the venue, and I am so glad that it is. I love theater so much because it is a way that I can express myself. I am even thinking of going to college for theater. Going to theater brings me contentment. The Venue Theater Company is considered part of my family. "- Anonymous, Student
"My son Tristan joined the Venue Theatre 5 years ago and he is just finishing up performances for the High School production of Matilda, his 8th show at the Venue. The benefits Tristan has gained during these childhood years of development at the theatre have been immeasurable. Not only has he found a safe environment to discover and explore his talents but has been able to develop them further under the guidance of professionals with a wide variety of knowledge and experience. He and his peers have landed in an enriching atmosphere where their individuality is not only accepted but celebrated. This acceptance has developed into deep friendships and camaraderie as they work together towards common goals. Everyone's success is dependent on each individual's performance which solidifies their commitment towards each other and the program as a whole.
The values the kids and adults gain from the Venue courses such as personal growth, resiliency, persistence, overcoming fears and exceeding limitations, etc. extend far beyond the theatre into everyday challenges. Tristan has demonstrated the confidence and excitement to try new things in his life-academically, athletically, and socially. In earlier years he was able to participate and excel in science fairs, school broadcast clubs, talents shows, spelling and geography bees. Currently, in high school, he seeks out opportunities to participate in academic presentations and is graded well for them. We (his parents) absolutely attribute these successes to his ability to perform under pressure-a skill he acquired from the theatre. We truly believe that these qualities will continue to benefit him as he progresses into college, the workforce, and beyond! In his own words, 'I feel that by participating in the Venue programs I am fulfilling a purpose and continually building towards my lifelong dream of working in the film industry.'
As a parent volunteer, I've had the privilege of working with the students and directors in activities such as goal setting, team building, fitness, and acrobatic skills. I can tell you that the intelligence and creativity in these children are truly uplifting. In addition, by working on costumes, set design, and props projects with other parents, I have developed new organizational skills in addition to acquiring lifelong friendships. The process of working in a creative environment has motivated me to pursue passions in my own life. Because in a nutshell, that is what this program does, it inspires people. Witnessing the responses of the participants and audiences that come to enjoy the shows, I believe that what the theatre creates awakens something within the human spirit that is truly magical and life-changing. We hope that you will consider donating to The Venue Theatre Company on this Colorado Gives Day so that many families can experience the countless benefits of this wonderful organization." - Parent of Tristan Eighmy
"(The Venue)...changes these kids' lives by teaching them that they can and should believe in themselves, they can and should try their hardest, they can accomplish things they never would have thought possible..." - Katherine, Parent
"I was struggling in life, especially at school. I had no friends and felt totally alone. I was severely depressed and had had thoughts of suicide. My parents were aware of this and I was seeing a counselor. After a little time went by I began thriving at the Venue. My work ethic became stronger. I started making significant gains in singing and stage presence. In the words of my former director, I am 'now a strong leader and role model. It has been a true transformation.' "- Anonymous, Student
"...I see miracles daily. I see their joy and astonishment when they succeed. I hear them tell me that 'I had the courage to stand up in class today'. I see their acceptance of other students who struggle to find their place in 'the outside world'. I see them feeling that The Venue is their home and a safe place to explore their potential. I see their pride and accomplishments. I see their confidence to meet their future with courage and a smile."- Debra, Former Staff
"I fear that many of these kids would 'fall into the cracks' in the social structure of their schools and potential friend groups. The cast members come from many different schools and socioeconomic backgrounds, and yet they meld together seamlessly. ...this occurs because...the...staff at The Venue Theatre emulate tolerance and acceptance for everyone. I have never observed a group of teenagers who are more accepting, kind, and inclusive. It is a wonderful environment for any child."- Kelli, Parent
"The Venue is a special place. It was my great pleasure to experience the enthusiasm of the kids, the quality of their work, and the devotion of the audience."- Brian Yorkey, American playwright, lyricist, theatre director