The arena where confidence, creativity, and discipline are tested in Play to build awesome humans.

The Playground is a two to five month acting class focused on Self-Empowerment Theatre. There are open enrollment classes, which include approximately 80 hours of instruction each. Every class devises or adapts a unique piece of theatre for the public.

Class structure consists of three components: 1) All students begin together in a “no-fear” self-empowering warm-up; 2) Students break into their individual classes to begin exercises to construct the storyline of their performance; 3) Classes end with a self and group reflection. 

The Playground is open to K-12 graders as follows:
Youngsterz (K - 1st) and (2nd - 3rd)  |  Kidz (4th - 8th)  |  Teenz (9th - 12th).

The 2016-17 Season
Fall: Mysteries
Spring: Aesop's Fables

View open classes here.

FAQs - Find out if the Playground is right for you!

What is the Playground? 

The Playground name came about because we see developing a production as "play." We give our students equipment, just like at a Playground, to fully engage, have fun, create, and explore in a safe environment.

What is "developing a production"? What does that mean?
While the story or play title is already chosen, the process to get to the final production is a collaboration! We are excited to devise or adapt an original work with our students every session. One of our goals is to present innovative, unique work for youth, and by presenting an original story we are able to stay true to that goal. We listen to our students and prompt exercises so they can help form the direction of the play. Each production within the Playground has moments where our students voices and text can be heard. 

Learn more about Empowerment Theatre here!

What does the final production typically look like?
Like nothing you have ever seen! The final production will be fast-paced, innovative, creative, engaging, self-empowering, unexpected, and professional. You will see all students onstage the entire play changing roles, acting as set pieces, relaying emotion through movement, moving the story along with the rest of the cast, and empowering themselves and the audience! We have created a unique style of theatre – we call it Self-Empowerment Theatre!

How do you come up with your pricing structure?
Our kidz and teenz classes have approximately 80 hours of instruction. We are excited to have an excellent teaching staff that includes local artistic directors, professional actors, and experienced educators! 

Moment from an original adaptation of A Little Princess, 2015.

Moment from an original adaptation of A Little Princess, 2015.

Teenz performing a devised version of Pinocchio, a story about conscience, 2015

Teenz performing a devised version of Pinocchio, a story about conscience, 2015

Teenz devising Snow White, 2015

Teenz devising Snow White, 2015

Playground students performing at Spark on Monument Circle, 2015.

Playground students performing at Spark on Monument Circle, 2015.

Kidz performing an original adaptation of The Phantom Tollbooth, 2015.

Kidz performing an original adaptation of The Phantom Tollbooth, 2015.

Who is my child's teacher?
We announce teachers once the session begins. We rotate our teachers every session so our students get a chance to work with everyone in our experienced staff. Having a different teacher each session will help build confidence, overcome fears, and has proven to increase the educational outcome for our students. 


What is your attendance policy?
Since all students are onstage the whole play, it is important for them to be at every rehearsal! For kidz and teenz, we allow 2-3 excused absences. Bolded dates on the schedules are mandatory, no exceptions! If someone misses excessively or has an unexcused absence (no-call, no-show), they may be removed from the program. If you have to miss more than twice, we ask you do not sign up and allow someone else who is able to make a full commitment to take that spot. We strive to teach our students responsibility and following through on commitments, and that is why we have this policy!

I have to miss 4 times...can I still sign up?
Contact catherine@yatkids.org to discuss!

We would like to thank our Playground sponsors!