Founded in 2000 to promote theatre’s role as a powerful teaching tool, the Pollyanna Theatre Company reached more than 20,000 school children each year with a series of top-quality theatrical productions.
Pollyanna produced only original plays, commissioning playwrights from around the nation to create timely works for children that engage, motivate, and inspire. As the first professional company in Central Texas to produce Theatre for the Very Young, Pollyanna illustrated the link between theatre, literacy, and academic readiness, a connection that was furthered by the company’s partnership with the early literacy organization BookSpring.
Quality and artistry are important and were at the heart of The Pollyanna Theatre Company’s work.
All members of Pollyanna’s ensemble were paid professional theatre artists who had professional experience and training in theatre. While remaining a non-commercial theatre, The Pollyanna Theatre Company worked to compensate artists for their talents and efforts while keeping ticket prices within the reach of average school systems and families in our Central Texas service area.
We believed that young people need exposure to a variety of theatrical events in order to be culturally literate. Therefore, our productions were held in formal theatrical venues and toured to community centers and school campuses.
The Pollyanna Theatre Company believed that being an audience member at live theatrical events is a right, not a privilege to be enjoyed by only the members of society who can pay for inclusion in our audience. Therefore, the company and its Directors were actively involved in providing the resources needed to include the most challenged segments of our service area, regardless of their individual ability to pay.
We saw other existing arts education programs by other organizations as our colleagues, not our competitors. Our Company was open to creative collaborations and welcomed the opportunity to work alongside others artist who endeavor to reach out into the schools and general communities that we all serve.
"Learning should always be fun and challenging. If you want kids to love reading and math, expose them to Pollyanna."
Our mission was to commission and produce original theatre for young audiences that speak to the needs, dreams, and imaginations of young people and the child that lives inside each of us.
Our Productions respected the intelligence of children and offered hope to individuals of all ages. Pollyanna supported general education through teaching, using theatre as a methodology across the curriculum.
Our Founding Principle
It is possible to create a theatre organization where creativity thrives, where new dramatic literature is created, where general education is supported, where artists find a creative home, and where no child is turned away because of their inability to pay for their ticket.
Pollyanna Theatre may no longer be producing live productions, but we sincerely hope that this principle can live on through other companies and educational institutions producing our plays now available for licensing.
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