JumpStart Theatre Program coming to San Diego Unified middle schools

Posted: Friday, February 2nd 2018


Students performing on stage

Middle school students in the San Diego Unified School District may be one step closer to their big break. 

The JumpStart Theatre Program is accepting applications from district middle schools to participate in a three-year, fully-funded musical theater program sponsored by La Jolla Playhouse and the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA).

Three district middle schools will be selected to participate in the program during the 2018-19 school year, giving non-theater teachers the skills, support and resources necessary to produce their campus’s first musical through a proven combination of hands-on mentoring and boot-camp style training.

This opportunity will expand access to the arts for many San Diego Unified students, underscoring the district’s ongoing commitment to arts education. 

La Jolla Playhouse was chosen as one of two theater companies in the country to spearhead the national expansion of the highly successful JumpStart Theatre Program, established in 2014 by the Educational Theatre Association in Cincinnati. La Jolla Playhouse has long established itself as an advocate of arts education, through such programs as the Performing Outreach Program Tour and the Young Performers series of summer theater training programs.

"We are thrilled to have JumpStart Theatre come to San Diego Unified. What a terrific opportunity for our middle school students to not only have an arts experience but to develop their 21st century skills,” said San Diego Unified Superintendent Cindy Marten. “We know JumpStart Theatre will continue our vision to transform lives through the arts. Thank you to our great local community partner, La Jolla Playhouse, and to the Educational Theatre Association."

The application is open to all San Diego Unified middle schools. Applications are due Feb. 23. Selection criteria includes the commitment of a minimum of three educators from each school who will remain dedicated to the program for the duration. Previous theater experience is not required. Schools will be mentored by La Jolla Playhouse teaching artists throughout the entire program with the goal of building a sustainable, long-term musical theatre curriculum.

"We are honored to be one of the inaugural regional partners for EdTA’s JumpStart Theatre program. La Jolla Playhouse is known for – and deeply committed to – the development of new plays and musicals, and the JumpStart Theatre Program provides a terrific proven method of empowering teachers to produce musicals in their middle schools,” said La Jolla Playhouse Managing Director Michael S. Rosenberg. “The opportunity to partner with EdTA and San Diego Unified in bringing the joy of musical theater to students and teachers in our community while building life skills through participation in the arts, could not be a better fit for La Jolla Playhouse.”

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