The Band's Visit and Something Rotten! star John Cariani gives his testimonial about the importance of theatre education in the video above, released to kick off Theatre in Our Schools (TIOS) month. The event, which begins March 1, will encourage thousands of students and teachers to take messages about the impact of performing arts in schools to their communities, school boards, and elected officials, as well as online.
"Theatre, arts, makes kids learn things in a different way than taking a test does," shares Cariani. "Kids who may struggle with comprehension or concepts may develop a passion about that concept when they are the ones who get to tell others about it in the form of a play. And it's interesting to watch that passion make kids learn."
The month-long campaign will share 31 facts over 31 days on social media using the hashtag #TIOS19, along with video testimonials from such Broadway favorites as Megan Hilty, Darren Criss, L. Steven Taylor, Bradley Gibson, Arielle Jacobs, and Noah J. Ricketts.
2019's TIOS month, jointly led by the American Alliance for Theatre & Education, the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA), and the International Thespian Society and sponsored by Disney Theatrical Productions, will focus on theatre's ability to build 21st century skills that equip students with invaluable tools with which to enter the modern workforce. The World Economic Forum's recent Future of the Workforce Study found it essential that workers today have expertise in collaborating, communication, and thinking critically, all skills that independent studies have shown theatre education an invaluable tool for developing.
"While I did theatre as a child, I went into the corporate world and I found that the skills that I take as a leader have come from theatre," says EdTA Executive Director Julie Cohen Theobald. "It didn't just build my confidence. It helped with discipline, accountability, communication, and collaboration, and it builds empathy by having you walk in someone else's shoes."
For more information abotu TIOS, visit SchoolTheatre.org and follow #TIOS19 and #TheatreinOurSchools on social media platforms.