Education at Theatre for a New Audience

Theatre for a New Audience provides a challenging and rigorous educational experience designed to support and advance students’ learning in both English Language Arts and Theatre. We offer the largest in-depth programs in the New York City Public Schools to introduce Shakespeare and other classics. Begun in 1984, our programs have served over 130,000 students, grades 4 through 12, in New York City Public Schools city-wide.

Theatre for a New Audience Education Programs:

  • Promote literacy by incorporating listening, speaking, reading, writing, and critical thinking skills. They are designed to inspire students to read and to recognize the power of ideas, the beauty of language, and the benefits of engaging in language-rich activities.
  • Align with state and city learning standards including the New York City Department of Education’s Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in Theater and the New York State Common Core Learning Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy (grades 4-12).
  • Build teacher capacity through extensive professional development that uses drama activities to support teaching the English Language Arts Curriculum.
  • Involve formative and summative assessment. Teaching artists conduct on-going assessment of student progress and participating teachers evaluate the quality of our staff, materials, and the programs’ effectiveness in meeting learning standards at the conclusion of the residency.
  • Provide up to 60 hours of training for our teaching artists, which includes conducting professional development workshops, working with students with special needs, and adapting lessons to fit the grade level. Many of our teaching artists return year after year, adding continuity and depth to the program.

For further information on the Theatre’s Arts Education programs, please contact:

Kathleen Dorman
Education Director
Telephone: 212-229-2819 ext. 18

Theatre for a New Audience is currently seeking Partner Schools interested in advancing their students’ learning in English Language Arts and Theatre. Thanks to the support of various private and public funds, we are able to offer a select number of NYC public schools a subsidy that will cover up to 65% of the program cost. Interested schools are invited to apply for their choice of the New Voices Project and/or the World Theatre Project by submitting this application.

Pictured above: Students of P.S. 235, photo by Gerry Goodstein.

“In all categories, Theatre for a New Audience’s drama program received the highest ratings from teachers and staff.”
New York City Department of Education’s Office of Research and Evaluation
“Theatre for a New Audience is widely and deservedly admired for taking Shakespeare to the city’s public schools.”
– The New York Times
“Theatre for a New Audience’s drama programs are a direct path to literacy. They are an important addition to every student’s education.”
– Sharon Dunn, former Senior Assistant for the Arts, NYC Department of Education

“Theatre for a New Audience’s programs are the largest of their kind for introducing Shakespeare and classic drama in the New York City Public Schools. Research shows that students involved in these applied learning activities have improved reading and writing skills.”
– Dr. Charlotte K. Frank, Regent, New York State, Former Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction, New York City Department of Education

“I have been teaching for 23 years, and this was by far the best program I have ever been involved with.”
–Teacher, PS 203 in Brooklyn