Conversations hushed and small feet wiggled in anticipation as the lights dimmed and music filled the theater. Students from schools throughout Brooklyn and their families were amongst the audience at the recent “Sid the Science Kid – Live!” performance at Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College (BCBC). This spring, BAC has provided over 600 tickets and roundtrip metrocards to attend BCBC shows ranging from “Sid” to “A Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald” by The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra to the Golden Dragon Acrobats’ “Cirque Ziva” as part of the CASA program supported through the NY City Council and the Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA). Trained through in-school performances, students bring their audience skills to BCBC and often share these skills with their parents and siblings.
In reflecting on the opportunity to experience a live performance, one parent coordinator told us, “So many of our families could never afford to see a show like that, so it truly was a special gift.” Parents at each show expressed gratitude for the opportunity, stressing the importance of providing Metrocards to make it possible for them to attend the shows. A single mother from Bensonhurst shared her belief in the power of the arts and the impact of attending performances. We heard from several parents and students who attended the Cirque Ziva show:
In talking with a small group of students, one noted, “I liked that they messed up just a little bit a couple of times – it shows how hard what they’re doing is!”
“Cirque Ziva was an amazing show. My daughter and I really enjoyed it. She talked about the juggling, especially the foot juggling with her grandparents. All the acts were great and I really enjoyed the entire performance.”
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart…for such a great performance. We had a wonderful time.”
Occasionally, teachers attend the BCBC performances with groups of students. The dance teacher from a school in Bedford-Stuyvesant is ecstatic about these opportunities, and draws on them for inspiration and ideas for his work in the school.
In partnership with BCBC, we are thrilled to continue finding ways to increase access to live performance experiences for children and their families throughout Brooklyn.