At TDF, we believe attending theatre and dance is a birthright for every New Yorker. But far too often, young people growing up in the five boroughs are unable to experience the magic, feeling unwelcome at venues mere miles from their homes. TDF is here to say: it’s for all of us.
Every year we bring more than 11,000 students from across the city to see theatre and dance through TDF’s School Programs. For many, this is their first time every setting foot in a theatre. It is not just about providing free tickets to a Broadway show, it’s about creating a meaningful experience that will stay with our students long after the curtain falls.
Through TDF School Programs, students find their voice, develop a sense of self and increase their desire to learn, not only about the theatre, but about life itself.
And we do it all at no cost to our students, teachers or schools.
Help TDF bring the power of live performance to the next generation today.
For over two decades, TDF Introduction to Theatre has provided nearly 100,000 middle, high school and college students with a meaningful welcome to live performance. We connect 10,000 students annually in 100 schools throughout the tristate area to workshops, artists, and live performance.
The Wendy Wasserstein Project
In 1998 Wendy Wasserstein and TDF wanted to see if theatre was relevant to young people. We took eight high school students to see six shows in a season and afterwards had pizza and talked. Today that experiment has blossomed into 24 mentorships. Top theatre professionals share their time and expertise with students throughout the five boroughs.
TDF Young Playwrights is a series of playwriting programs providing middle and high school students with opportunities for sequential learning in playwriting, lighting the spark for young storytellers.Each year, over 700 students explore live performance as they craft original works that are shared as staged readings Off Broadway.
Introduction to Dance gives 180 students every year the opportunity to see some of the world’s most renowned dance companies on stage. Professional dancers and choreographers lead workshops to help students physically explore the artistry and aesthetics of the dance companies they see on stage.
I learned things this year that changed me. I learned that bonds between people are important, that you can learn and grow from mistakes and I learned that I am passionate about theatre. I learned so much about myself and about life in general. TDF was the catalyst for that.
Darryan V., Dr. Susan S. McKinney Secondary School of the Arts, Brooklyn
TDF has helped to reawaken a side that my students have left behind because they have had to grow up too soon.
Natalie Velazquez, Harvey Milk HS Teacher