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Founded in 1985, the company exists to present works which are true to African American life and art--both contemporary and historical--and strives to present quality theater that is not only culturally enriching but also educationally sound for a population of young people and adults not traditionally exposed to the art form.
Our Programs for Youth
The Arts and Learning Education Initiative TM is a K-8 program which uses basic theater to strengthen students' reading and reading comprehension skills. The program targets students in under served communities and works to improve their reading skills by at least one grade level. The program includes an "I'm Going to College Day" for its elementary and middle school students, which allows youngsters to visit the campus of Michigan State University and experience college for a day.The Arts and Learning Education Initiative TM now includes the "Bridges" computer technology in the arts component. Students are provided a new computer, printer, monitor and free Internet access for use in the home. The students' use of computers allows them to log onto our website and receive and submit their online homework assignments. Student computer activities include outlining and writing plays, creating lighting and sound effects for those plays, illustrating sets, props, characters, etc.,---all using their computers. The computers and the assignments are used as tools to help strengthen students' skills in the core subjects of Reading , Writing and English/Language Arts. The online assignments correlate with lessons that students are learning in the after-school workshops. Student work is featured regularly on our website at www.detroittheatreforthedramaticarts.org . The Arts and Business Technology Initiative TM is a program for 9-12 graders that uses computer technology to teach youth the "business behind show business." It is designed as an introduction to the endless role that computer technology has in the entertainment industry -- from actual stage production to program marketing to reaching nontraditional audiences through the Internet. The program was launched in 1998 through sponsorship provided by IBM Corporation and American Express. From that launch, students engaged not only in creating computer-based marketing projects but also learned how to produce an educational video for BET Movies which was broadcast nationwide. The South Africa Cultural Exchange Initiative TM was launched in 1999. Students selected for this program spend a full semester learning the economy, the culture, the geography and the political structure of the nation of South Africa . Following completion of the required course work, students spend a month traveling the nation, visiting Durban , Cape Town , Pretoria , Johannesburg , Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe , Mamelodi Township and Soweto Township . They perform for more than 2,000 South African school children and watch the courses they study in preparation for this trip come to life before their eyes.
The Arts in Michigan State Parks Ambassadors Initiative TM , launched Summer 2007, it affords our students an opportunity to tour the state of Michigan sharing culturally-enriching, educationally-sound programming with diverse audiences enjoying the outdoors of Michigan State Parks. The program is a partnership with the State of Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Our students travel during summer and fall throughout Michigan State Parks entertaining children and families as part of the DNR's "GO GET-OUTDOORS" campaign. Our students also get to enjoy the great outdoors through exciting camping field trips at the many state parks throughout Michigan .The Cultural Corridor Initiative TMwas launched in Fall 2008 at the invitation of Michigan state legislators who recognize that cultural activities can help to generate economic vitality for the State of Michigan . The Cultural Corridor Initiative TMlinks metro-Detroit to rural and urban centers along Interstate I-75, including Saginaw , Frankenmuth, Birch Run, Bridgeport , Bay City , Zilwaukee and others. Students who live in these communities are performing the play, "OBAMA: A CHILDREN'S FAIRYTALE," an original work produced by Detroit Theatre for the Dramatic Arts for children and families. The play held its world premiere at The John F. Kennedy Center in Washington , DC during the festivities surrounding the 2009 Presidential Inaugural.
- Cheryl Gray
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