How Many Kids Does it Take to Produce a Play?

Arts and culture programs are incredibly beneficial to a city’s youth, especially in communities where social issues create barriers to growth. After-school programs, like Arts 10566, a nonprofit after-school program that has provided access to the arts for Peekskill youth, can foster a diverse environment where creativity can flourish.

This Thursday, June 8, 150 kids who are enrolled in the Arts 10566 program will perform an original play, Saved By A Child, by Amos Smith, at the Paramount Hudson Valley at 7 p.m.

Through Arts 10566, kids of all ages are given the opportunity to actively create something much larger than themselves, providing them the chance to collaborate and create something incredible. The entire production, including the scenery and set designs, was created by the kids involved in the program.

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Putting the youths’ artistry to further use, founders Wilfredo Morel and Lee Balter expanded the program by working with 20 students from Peekskill High School in a Tech Crew in Training Program. These students are granted the opportunity to work with the Audio & Lighting Department staff at the Paramount Theater, being trained by experts on developing and managing a professional theater set.

Arts 10566 is more than just a children’s arts program, it is a method of bringing all young people of different backgrounds together in an opportunity to teach them about the value of culture and arts. The performance is free to the public, but donations are accepted to support the program. For more information, visit

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