Following the March 13 premiere of Rise, the team behind the NBC drama aims to ignite a conversation about the value of theatre programs in schools.
Creator Jason Katims hopes “this show will help to remind people that [arts education] is really valuable, and it’s not just about putting on a show,” he told Playbill in an on-set interview earlier this year.
Now, the cast of Rise, including Josh Radnor, Rosie Perez, and Auli'i Cravalho, has gathered for this exclusive video to laud the teachers and mentors who set them on their paths.
Rise, though having found on home on network TV, is a passion project for everyone involved. While Katims notes that most of his sets feel very personal, everyone—from the producing team to the cast and crew—connects in a deeper way to this material. Katims' career launched after My So-Called Life producer Ed Zwick saw his short play at Actors Theatre of Louisville; Radnor started acting in a public high school drama department, as did several of his co-stars, including Shirley Rumierk, Amy Forsyth, Damon J. Gillespie, Shannon Purser, and Ted Sutherland.
“People feel very proud of the show and very excited about a show that champions theatre in public education. Because they have been touched by it themselves, they know how important it is,” Katims said. “It definitely resonates in a different way with everyone in the cast.”
Rise airs Tuesdays at 9PM ET on NBC.