The Hanover Theater and Conservatory for the Performing Arts has partnered with the national tour Summer: The Donna Summer Musical for their annual Adopt-A-School program. Each year, the Hanover Theater partners with Worcester Public Schools to collaborate with school administrators and teachers on a curriculum-based arts integration program.
Over a three-week period this year, 2,400 students from Burncoat High School and South High School participated in lessons in each subject which incorporated themes from Summer: The Donna Summer Musical, historical and sociological elements, artistic aspects and a musical score.
The Adopt-A-School program was established in 2013 to provide a school-wide arts experience at Worcester’s South High School. Nine years later, the program now introduces young people from Burncoat High School and South High School to Broadway theater and integrates the arts into core program concepts to enhance learning. The theater’s educational staff works collaboratively with teachers to incorporate the themes, history and social impacts of a Broadway show into lessons in all subject areas (ELA, history, chemistry, physics, biology, algebra, geometry , etc).
In Worcester Public Schools, many students are economically disadvantaged and have limited access to the arts in the Greater Worcester community. The Adopt-A-School program aims to provide students across the city with the opportunity to experience and interact with live theater on an annual basis. A special matinee performance has been booked for Friday, April 1 at 10 a.m. exclusively for students from Burncoat and South High School to come together and witness the incredible story behind this production. Each year, students have the opportunity to interact with the actors after the show, giving them the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about performing and the performing arts.
“We are honored to have this support and recognition from the National Endowment for the Arts. Our Adopt-A-School program is a labor of love to provide access to the arts for all students. Our work over the nine years has exposed thousands of students to their first live theatrical performance,” commented Hanover Theater Director of Education Meghan Montaner.
The Adopt-A-School program would not be possible without funding from organizations such as the National Endowment for the Arts, donors of Access to the Theater Arts and the McDonough Foundation. For more information on the National Endowment for the Arts grant announcement, visit Arts.gov/news. To learn more about the Hanover Theater and Conservatory’s Adopt-A-School program, visit TheHanoverTheatre.org/education.
“I love how I can connect with the characters even though we come from completely different backgrounds. The music and the dances brought me to life,” exclaims one of the students.
Student work and projects will be on display in the theater lobby during public performances of Summer: The Donna Summer Musical from March 31 to April 3, 2022.