TDF has concluded another year of the TDF Wendy Wasserstein Project, which featured the participation of 192 students from across New York City. Formerly known as Open Doors, the initiative is a theatre arts mentoring program in which high school students are invited to attend Broadway and Off-Broadway shows over the course of the academic year, followed by post-show discussions.
Founded in 1998 with late Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Wendy Wasserstein, the project culminates in a ceremony with mentors and students. This year, with COVID-19 restrictions still in place, the celebration was held online June 8. You can view it above.
The lineup of guest speakers who spoke at the celebration included Adam Bock, Mark Brokaw, Kathleen Chalfant, Keith Randolph Smith, Rachel Chanoff, Dawn Chiang, Kirsten Childs, Mindi Dickstein, Alexander Dinelaris, Joe DiPietro, Alan Eisenberg, Scott Ellis, Peter Friedman, Caitlin O’Connell, Anne Hamburger, Stephen Karam, Natasha Katz, James Lapine, Robert Longbottom, Aubrey Lynch II, Kathleen Marshall, Scott Landis, Derek McLane, Justin Paul, Marc Platt, Dick Scanlan, Caleb Teicher, Serena Wong, and David Zippel.
“Since this program began, the annual ceremony has been key in summing up the year, providing emotional remembrances from past and present participants as they recalled how the year of theatregoing and discussions with their groups gave them fresh insights into the world around them,” said Ginger Bartkoski Meagher, director of TDF Education Programs. “We didn’t want this year’s students to miss out on that experience, so we produced a virtual graduation in the same format they would have experienced live. What’s even more exciting is that every one of our mentors was able to send in a greeting for the students. It is our hope that these students will go forward and experience a life filled with theatregoing.”
To learn more about the program, go to TDF.org.