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Theatre As a Tool to Educate and Inspire Change

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This year, The Children’s Theatre Company (CTC) of Peekskill presents two heart warming musicals: The Ugly Duckling and Show Way.

The Ugly Duckling is a story of a plain-looking little bird born in a barnyard, who is teased and mocked as he searches to find his place in the world. It is a story of transformation and courage under fire. The story looks at the dangers of judging others based on outward appearance, and teaches us to accept ourselves and others, and not to be influenced by people’s perception of us.

Show Way is the story of an 11-year old girl named Toshi who in search for a lost family heirloom, is led by generations of women who came before her, from slaves who secretly sewed quilts to SHOW the WAY to freedom to civil rights marchers. Along the way, Toshi learns that we all have the strength of our ancestors, family and friends to draw upon to get us through difficult times. 

The shows opened February 8 to a full audience and the CTC cast gave a stellar performance! The shows were inspiring and brought smiles as well as tears to the eyes of the audience. 

Here are a few statements from the audience:

“I absolutely loved the show tonight! I was so impressed with all the children and I was touched by the message in the play. Congrats to everyone for a wonderful performance.”

“Outstanding production and extraordinary performances!”

“Happy Black History Month!!! Two amazing plays. Creativity full of social consciousness! Thank you NECS!” 

About CTC

In 2006, I was inspired by The Children’s Theatre Company (CTC) in NYC to start a chapter in my local town of Peekskill, NY.  What attracted me to CTC was their slogan “Building Character on Stage.”  CTC is not just about children showcasing their talents, but rather introduced them to the magic of theatre by transforming theatre into a tool for developing critical thinkers and inspiring children to be the voices of positive change in their community. While the children learn to sing, dance and act, they also get to contemplate solutions to contemporary social issues. 

CTC Peekskill has been in operation since 2006. In the thirteen years that we have served this community, our plays have covered topics of bullying, gender equality, environmental issues, race, prejudice to name a few. Character education is embedded in the plays. We have watched many of our alumni grow up to become activists, speaking out for issues that are important to their communities and actively participating in coming up with solutions. 

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