|The cast of James and the Giant Peach|
During a particularly lively number at James and the Giant Peach, I took my son’s hand to move it in time with the music. “Mommy,” he objected, “I’m watching!”
Eli is four. I was thrilled that he was so engaged in the performance! If, at the age of four, he can devote such attention to the action onstage, I chuckled to myself, we were in good shape for the college lectures he would have down the road.
Going to the theatre is not only great entertainment for our kids, it is a learning experience on many different levels. At the Bay Area Children’s Theatre, it’s an opportunity to see a favorite story come alive onstage or to be introduced to a story that a child will enjoy reading later on. It’s the chance to share and discuss an artistic experience with family members, and the discipline of watching, wondering, absorbing, analyzing, and then responding—as life often demands.
As BACT’s education director, I focus on the experiences children have as participants in making theatre, but I’m equally delighted when I see youngsters become involved with live theatre as audience members. Both artistic experiences are enriching, and both are invaluable preparation for the future.
See you at the theatre!
Becca Posamentier is a founding company member of Bay Area Children's Theatre and currently serves as the Director of BACT's Education Program.