Stagebridge

Rating: 5 stars   12 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture, Education, Human Services, Seniors

Location: 2501 Harrison St Oakland CA 94612 USA

Mission: Stagebridge is the nation's oldest senior theatre company. The average age of actors, storytellers and volunteers is 70 years old. The company was founded in 1978 by director, Dr. Stuart Kandell, because opportunities did not exist for older adults to participate in the performing arts. These opportunities are still very limited. The company's mission, to bridge the generations, is as vital today as it was 20 years ago. Children have limited contact with their grandparents or other older adults. They grow up with media stereotypes of what it is like to be old. Stagebridge exists to provide positive images of old age and demonstrate that older adults can be creative, energetic and work together with young people. As our world rapidly ages, this is a most vital goal.
Programs: The company trains older adults in theatre; creates original plays about aging and tours them to community sites; runs an innovative program of performances, workshops and storytelling for local elementary schools; presents original plays for public audiences; and features grandparent storytellers on an annual series of radio programs. Stagebridge reaches 32,000 people a year in schools, senior facilities, and community sites. The company has a national reputation for its work and has appeared on CNN, World Monitor TV, ABC, and PBS. Stagebridge has program materials available for sale as well as consultant services. The company is directed by founder Dr. Stuart Kandell.
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

Stagebridge is the nation's oldest senior (50+) theater company. It trains playwrights, actors, storytellers, singers, dancers, and other performing artists and shares them with schools, senior centers, and the general public.

The free assemblies and classroom teaching programs in elementary schools alone are an amazing community resource. Thousands of students have been exposed to, and instructed in, drama and storytelling, improving their literacy, their poise and self-confidence, their imaginations, their language skills, and their general awareness and appreciation of the arts as a part of a fulfilling life. The instruction at Stagebridge, and the programs Stagebridge offers to schools and other community institutions is professional, deep, and profoundly enriching. What a gift to the Bay Area Community!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Fund it better to magnify it's positive impact on the life of the Bay Area Community.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

Stagebridge is a wonderful school for the arts, with teachers who are leaders in their fields. Stagebridge is a wonderful creative collective where artists work together, learn from each other, and are inspired to go the next step. Stagebridge is a wonderful contributor to the East Bay community, providing arts to underserved schools, senior centers, and the general public at little or no cost. Stagebridge is a family of creative people who have gotten to know each other on every level and have been enriched by those connections. If you are looking for a creative home, look no further.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Stagebridge is a school for the performing arts for seniors, but this doesn't begin to describe the amazing impact it has on the lives of the participants. Many of us had dreams of performing when we were young, but life got in the way. Now, with a lifetime of other experiences, we can let go and fulfill those dreams. Most people don't realize how much talent has been hidden for years until they take classes, perform or just be in the audience! Stagebridge also helps bridge the generations with storytelling in schools, and shows geared to youngsters. A remarkable resource and treasure in the Bay Area which is no where as well known as it deserves to be!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

Stagebridge is a unique Senior Theater Company. I had done a little acting in school and college, and again in a local community theater while in my 40's, but never did really follow through on my childhood dream of being in theater. Then, in the winter of 2009, I discovered Stagebridge. I've been taking classes there ever since. I also was discouraged as a child from singing, but at Stagebridge discovered that I'm not so terrible a singer (60 years later!). So now I take acting, musical theater (including some dancing), and singing classes, and perform at the end of each semester in various showcases (in such venues as the Aurora Theater and Ashby Stage). The teachers are all professional and dedicated; the atmosphere is totally supportive; and the other students are equally amazing. We all encourage and help each other. In addition to the classes (lots more than just the three I've mentioned), Stagebridge also does community outreach to schools and senior facilities.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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