Above: Carly Shank, Director of Audience Development and Communication, prepares Head Start children for Fancy Nancy, a Sangamon Auditorium Class Acts performance.
A year ago, in May, 2011, the PNC Foundation awarded its first Grow Up Great grant in the Springfield area to Sangamon Auditorium. The three-year $90,000 grant provided funding to enhance the performing arts experiences of 600 Springfield Urban League Head Start students.
Today, a year into the three-year grant, we can tell you the great results of PNC's gift:
Teachers offered their thanks to PNC, including the following: “We are very thankful to PNC for choosing to give to youth in such a grand fashion while teaching the children about the arts! Thank you!,”“We want to come back,” and “This was a great experience for the Head Start children.”
A total of 66 families representing 291 individuals reserved tickets for ZooZoo, a performance by Imago Theater. Urban League families had an on-site meal and participated in one hour of pre-show activities.
A total of 58 Head Start teachers participated in a professional development workshop entitled "Drama Every Day," part of the Auditorium's "Partners in Education" program from the nationally recognized John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Comments from the teachers included “I learn better with hands-on. Excellent!”, “Great audience participation along with education,” and “We really enjoyed the activities.”