What Variety Children’s Theatre means to me.
by Emma Price
I feel that the arts are necessary for personal growth and development. I would not be the person that I am today had I not been involved with Variety Children’s Theatre for the last eight years. The people that I have met through Variety Children’s Theatre have and continue to help me grow emotionally and socially.
Since I was a little girl, I have always loved musicals and have dreamed of being in one. Because I am a person with a physical disability, I thought that my dream could never come true. When I was sixteen years old, Variety Children’s Theatre was started. Variety Children’s Theatre has kids with and without disabilities in their cast. We get to work with some of the best local professional actors and directors in the business. I’ve learned so much from the people that I’ve gotten to work with. The environment that Lara Teeter creates is fully inclusive for the kids with disabilities. We are included in every aspect of the show. Some are part of the cast and some are backstage interns. The backstage interns learn about everything that goes on backstage and play an integral part in helping to put the show together and helping to make sure that the show runs smoothly. We are part of a show family and have a bond like no other.
Variety Children’s Theatre is funded by a host of wonderful people and organizations. The St. Louis community is fortunate to have a place for young people - with physical challenges - to be involved. What I have learned and continue to learn through my involvement with Variety Children’s Theatre is respect, self-discipline, time management, and friendship. Personally, my work ethic, determination, and drive are a direct result of being involved in the many musicals that Variety Children’s Theatre has sponsored. Plus, I have now have life-long friendships from my childhood, teenage, and adult experiences with Variety Children’s Theatre.
I truly hope that young people with or without physical challenges will have an opportunity to be part of Variety Children’s Theatre. Being a part of Variety Children’s Theatre is a unique and life changing experience.