Meet Our Members: Oddfellows Playhouse

Connecticut Arts Alliance has begun a series of posts spotlighting its CAA members. The Membership Program, begun earlier this year, joins together arts organizations, artists, and arts patrons throughout Connecticut in building a strong arts and culture sector that benefits the arts and all Connecticut residents.

Oddfellows Playhouse Youth Theater is a Middletown-based non-profit which offers classes, productions and special events in theater, dance, music, circus and visual arts to kids ages 4 to 20 and their families. Founded in 1975 by a small group of college students, Oddfellows remains Connecticut’s largest and most active year-round youth theater, an independent, not-for-profit organization that annually serves over 1,200 young people.

Oddfellows believes that access to high-quality arts experiences is a fundamental right. Throughout its history, Oddfellows has remained committed to artistic excellence and social change. The Playhouse’s mission has three parts: 1) an artistic dimension to provide high-quality theater by and for young people; 2) an educational dimension to promote the growth of young people–in skills, knowledge, and self-confidence–through the performing arts; and 3) a social action dimension to offer opportunities especially to underserved and at-risk youngsters to promote the development of a genuinely multiracial, multicultural society. Individual Playhouse programs must address at least one of these broad goals; Playhouse activities as a whole must address all three.

“Antigone” (2018)

Signature programs include the Teen Repertory Company, Circophony Teen Circus, Oddbridge After-School Program, and the Children’s Circus of Middletown. For more information about Oddfellows Playhouse and current programs, contact info@oddfellows.org or call (860) 347-6143.


If you agree that the advocacy efforts of Connecticut Arts Alliance on behalf of arts and culture in our state are important, please consider becoming a Charter Member today!

Meet Our Members: Ives Concert Park

Connecticut Arts Alliance has begun a series of posts spotlighting its CAA members. The Membership Program, begun earlier this year, joins together arts organizations, artists, and arts patrons throughout Connecticut in building a strong arts and culture sector that benefits the arts and all Connecticut residents.

Tucked away in a lush oasis of natural beauty on Danbury’s west side, Ives Concert Park honors the rich history and memory of Pulitzer Prize winning Danbury native, Charles Edward Ives, one of America’s greatest music composers, by providing a nationally recognized forum for the performing and creative arts. This 4,500-seat outdoor amphitheater located on the campus of Western Connecticut State University hosts world-renowned artists, multicultural festivals, and a wide variety of music and theater genres. The venue is situated on 40 wooded acres with a pond, breathtaking gardens and public hiking trails.

The venue pays tribute to its storied roots in classical music while acknowledging the ongoing evolution of the art of live performance. With entertainment that ranges from enlightening to awe-inspiring, the Ives reflects the diverse multicultural community in which it resides; embracing the unique attributes that our performers and patrons bring to our site. The Ives features a Celebrity Series, a Fine Arts & Family Series including Shakespeare, Chamber Music, Children’s Events, as well as Jazz, Cultural Arts, Performance Arts, Visual Arts, Arts Education, an Ecuadorian Festival, an Irish Festival, The Connecticut Latin Music Festival and more.

A common love of the arts and the beauty of nature bring fans to our grounds. Their shared experiences here create lasting memories.


If you agree that the advocacy efforts of Connecticut Arts Alliance on behalf of arts and culture in our state are important, please consider becoming a Charter Member today!

Meet Our Members: Pantochino Productions

Connecticut Arts Alliance has begun a series of posts spotlighting its CAA members. The Membership Program, begun earlier this year, joins together arts organizations, artists, and arts patrons throughout Connecticut in building a strong arts and culture sector that benefits the arts and all Connecticut residents.

Pantochino Productions Inc. is Connecticut’s award-winning, ridiculously entertaining theatre for family audiences in Milford. Presenting 100% original musical theatre for children and their families, Pantochino is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization and its mission is to entertain, engage and enrich family audiences with an array of original, affordable entertainment experiences, and provide positive, nurturing training to young actors.

In addition to presenting three original family musicals each year, the company presents an acclaimed Teen Theatre program, a wildly popular Summer Theatre Camp series, an After School Drama Club program taking place in schools in the Greater New Haven area and beyond, and with the Milford Arts Council, presents Nite Spot Nights, a performance series bringing top New York City cabaret artists to Downtown Milford.

Pantochino has been recognized nationally, having received several Broadway World (Connecticut Region) Awards including Best Musical, Best Original/New Works and Best Family Production among others. The company also received the Cultural Contribution Award of Distinction by the Milford Regional Chamber of Commerce. In 2018, the company was chosen to debut “Beat Bugs: A Musical Adventure,” a new musical based on the award-winning Netflix series featuring the songbook of the Beatles.


If you agree that the advocacy efforts of Connecticut Arts Alliance on behalf of arts and culture in our state are important, please consider becoming a Charter Member today!

Meet Our Members: Judy Dworin Performance Project

Connecticut Arts Alliance has begun a series of posts spotlighting its CAA members. The Membership Program, begun earlier this year, joins together arts organizations, artists, and arts patrons throughout Connecticut in building a strong arts and culture sector that benefits the arts and all Connecticut residents.

On stage, in schools, and in prisons, Judy Dworin Performance Project (JDPP) uses arts engagement and movement-based performance to examine social issues, build bridges of understanding across diverse communities, and inspire both individual growth and collective action.

The JDPP Ensemble has produced more than 20 full-evening performances and numerous shorter pieces. Recognized by awards from the Connecticut League of History and the American Association for State and Local History, the company’s diverse group of collaborating artists create work that speaks to often-untold stories of historical and contemporary social justice issues.

The Moving Matters!™ Multi-Arts Residency at Parkville Community School involves the entire school in multi-arts activity that inspires innovation, healthy risk-taking, arts appreciation, academic development, and community building.

The Bridging Boundaries™ Arts Intervention Program teams social work with the arts to span the forced separations of populations affected by incarceration. Since 2005, outreach has grown to include a Performance Residency for women at York Correctional Institution; a Moms & Kids outreach for mothers and children; a Dads & Kids residency for fathers and families; an In Schools Program for youth with a parent or caregiver in prison; Stepping Out and New Beginnings residencies for returning citizens; and I AM (Arts, Imagination and Me) JDPP’s outreach to 18 to 25 year old women (the first of its kind in the country).


If you agree that the advocacy efforts of Connecticut Arts Alliance on behalf of arts and culture in our state are important, please consider becoming a Charter Member today!

Meet Our Members: Greater Bridgeport Youth Orchestras

Today, Connecticut Arts Alliance begins a series of posts spotlighting its CAA members. The Membership Program, begun earlier this year, joins together arts organizations, artists, and arts patrons throughout Connecticut in building a strong arts and culture sector that benefits the arts and all Connecticut residents.

Young people achieve amazing things at GBYO. They develop their talents beyond what they thought possible and feel pride and joy in their accomplishments. The study of great music in an ensemble setting can be a transformative experience for young musicians, and GBYO’s mission is to provide that experience in a challenging, fun, and nurturing environment.

Greater Bridgeport Youth Orchestras has been providing music education and performance opportunities to young musicians since 1961, and it is now the largest youth orchestra in the region. Its developmentally progressive music program gives ensemble members the opportunity to play at the highest level both individually and collectively. Members are selected by competitive audition and come from all over Connecticut. GBYO exposes all of its members to all types of symphonic literature and enriches their musical education.

Saturday mornings, from September through mid-May, nine separate ensembles bring young people together for music, enjoyment, community, and learning. Through rehearsals and formal performances, young musicians gain valuable experience and an important sense of achievement and self-confidence, while fostering lifelong friendships and a love of music. GBYO strives for diversity and inclusion through outreach and a generous financial assistance program.


If you agree that the advocacy efforts of Connecticut Arts Alliance on behalf of arts and culture in our state are important, please consider becoming a Charter Member today!