New York

Broadway Bridges program helps thousands of New York City students see their first Broadway show

NEW YORK — Each year, thousands of New York City highschool students see a Broadway show, an expertise that may change lives. 

A CBS2’s Dick Brennan studies, Broadway Bridges is the biggest theater schooling program within the metropolis. 

“I’m happy. I’m excited. I just want to see how it is,” mentioned tenth grader Cam Johnson. 

“I’ve never done anything quite like this other than the movie theater,” mentioned Kasey Rosario, a tenth grader at East Bronx Academy for the Future. 

High faculty sophomores just lately obtained an opportunity to see “The Phantom of the Opera,” Broadway’s longest-running musical, for simply $10 a ticket because of the Broadway Bridges program. 

“We know that when kids do arts, they do better in life, they go on, further their school. They just are happier, more successful people. So this is a win for us, a win for the students and a win for New York City,” mentioned Charlotte St. Martin, president of the Broadway League. 

St. Martin desires each New York City faculty scholar to see a Broadway show earlier than they graduate. 

“It introduces a key aspect of the city of New York. It introduces careers in Broadway to these students because they’re making life decisions,” mentioned St. Martin. “And it also hopefully builds an audience for us.”

Around 60,000 students have seen exhibits like “Beetlejuice,” “Aladdin” and “Hadestown” because the program began six years in the past. 

“Broadway is a really exciting place to go to. You get to see professional plays,” mentioned tenth grader Marian Rodriguez. 

“I think it’s a great way for people to grow a new love of theater,” mentioned tenth grader Paulyne Bacani, who’s been to Broadway earlier than. “I’m excited for [my friends] because it’s their first time.” 

“They’re mesmerized. Many of our students have never even been to Manhattan, much less a theater. It’s really great. The teachers tell us it is an incredible bonding experience for them,” mentioned St. Martin. 

“People don’t realize that the arts is very conducive to learning. When you mix a passion for arts, it creates a passion for academics. It’s an outlet for a lot of our students,” mentioned Rosemary Vega, principal at East Williamsburg Scholars Academy.

For many scholar, the journey to “Phantom” was their first time ever seeing a Broadway show. 

“I don’t really know what I should expect, I don’t know. I’m still excited,” mentioned tenth grader Victoria Banszynski.

Kasey Rosario, a tenth grader at East Bronx Academy for the Future, is eyeing a career within the arts and mentioned a visit to the theater is a useful lesson. 

“I think it might help me be more confident, since there’s actually like actors going through the process of exposing their art style and being themselves. So it might help me be more confident in my writing,” mentioned Rosario. 

In all, 19 Broadway exhibits, together with “Into the Woods,” “MJ: The Musical,” “Wicked,” “Death of a Salesman” and “Topdog/Underdog,” are on this year’s checklist, ushering in new lifelong theater followers. 

Click here for more information on Broadway Bridges.

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