Youth Onstage New Orleans, LA (YONOLA)

Southern Rep’s YONOLA is a free, weekly in-school intensive for underserved and low-income children in the Tremé-Lafitte neighborhood of New Orleans. Working in partnership with SUCCESS Prep Academy and KIDsmART, Southern Rep brings in theatre instructors, arts professionals, and other experts to teach a class of 5th grade students about acting, writing, directing and designing live, professional theatre. Every semester, the class finishes the course by producing an original, ensemble-created work that draws from current events, peer issues, classic literature, fairy tales, and myths.


To date, the more than 50 students who have participated in YONOLA have shown demonstrated improvement in reading comprehension, writing skills, relationship building and self-confidence. Students at SUCCESS Preparatory Academy that are not directly enrolled in YONOLA gain from the program too, with access to the in-school performances and field trips to the professional venues where YONOLA shows are produced.

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