The New 42nd Street / The New Victory Theater

Rating: 4.97 stars   33 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture

Location: 229 West 42nd St 10th Floor New York NY 10036 USA

Mission: The New 42nd Street is an independent nonprofit organization established in 1990 by the State and City of New York with a mandate to revitalize a long-neglected stretch of 42nd Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue. The organization was entrusted with a 99-year lease on 7 historic properties, and opened the elegantly restored New Victory Theater in December 1995 as New York City's first and foremost performing arts venue dedicated to young people and families. The New Vic instantly transformed the local community and the City's cultural landscape, and emboldened The New 42nd Street to construct and operate the New 42nd Street Studios, which opened in June 2000 as a state-of-the-art facility replete with 14 rehearsal spaces, offices for 6 nonprofit dance/theater companies and a 200-seat theater, The Duke on 42nd Street. The New 42nd Street's remaining properties are subleased to cultural and commercial enterprises that are ensuring the vitality of the block for generations to come.
Results: Since opening in 1995, The New Victory has introduced over 1.5 million kids and adults to a broad spectrum of performing arts from around the world.
Direct beneficiaries per year: Each season, New Victory productions are seen by 100,000 adults and children, 33,000 of whom are NYC-area schoolchildren and teachers, who see the same shows as the public for only $2 per ticket through the New Victory Education Program. The New Vic/New 42 Youth Corps provides paid employment and job training to 75-80 high school and college-age New Vic Ushers and New 42 Apprentices each season.
Geographic areas served: New York City and surrounding areas
Programs: The New Victory Theater Education Program, New Vic/New 42 Youth Corps
2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 13-3584032
646-223-3000
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Community Reviews

Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

I am a teacher at Banana Kelly High School in the South Bronx. We have been members of New Victory Ed program for four years and i have only words of awe and praise. Whether we watched the Mayhem Poets, Nevermore, Momentum, A Shakespeare Farce or a Life Size Puppet version of Macbeth, the performances are always OUTSTANDING...and my students look forward to everyone. I usually take between 60 to 80 seniors and they are in awe and amazement. The workshops that they offer to our students pre or post performance are also wonderful and my students are very motivated and inspired by the teaching artists. In addition, i have gone to numerous workshops that they offer for teachers, and these too are top caliber. Bravo! to and outstanding experience offered by the New Victory ...

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

By taking their workshops, having the teaching artists come to my students and taking my students to their performances at the New Victory on 42nd.

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

have more shows for high school level

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Rating: 5 stars  

We have been members of the New Vic for the past few seasons and have LOVED every show we have seen. The performaces are engaging, stimulating, fun and speak to children at their level. My 7yo son often asks "when is our next show at the New Victory." His favorites in recent years were Mayayuma, Flaming Idiots and The Man Who Planted Trees. It is so wonderful that the shows are affordable - and a great reason to become a member is to get discounts on tickets. We can't wait for The Tragical Life of Cheeseboy!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

By attending many shows with friends and family.

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

Have even more schools be eligible to participate in workshops and attend performances.

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

So many of us know about the incredible performances that are hosted by the New Victory theater each year. But the staff of New 42nd Street have also made far-reaching contributions to arts education in New York City through their usher program, educational programming in the schools, the teaching artists and workshops hosted at the New 42nd Street Studios, and so much more. In addition, the New Vic Council serves as an incredible incubator for continuing ideas to expand arts outreach. Bravo!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My entire family has benefited from attending multiple performances at the New Victory, as well as the family workshops.

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

Greatly expand its budget for even more outreach!

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I was lucky enough to work for The New Victory Theater/New 42nd Street from 2005 to 2010. I miss working there SO much, and the only reason I left was because I moved away from NYC. During my time with The New Vic, I was continually amazed by the one-of-a-kind productions, impressed by the unparalleled educational programs, appreciative of the genuine kindness of those who work there, and inspired by the organization’s tireless commitment to its mission and die-hard respect for kids as thoughtful individuals that deserve much more than cheesy spoonfuls of sugar.

The programming at New Victory Theater is top-notch not only in New York but across the country and world as well. The entire staff works tirelessly every year to bring in absolutely amazing pieces of theater of all different genres from all around the world. Whether it’s a large-scale circus in the New Victory, an intimate play in the Duke, or a darling puppetry piece in the New 42 Studios, the productions are always sophisticated, boundary-pushing, exciting and thought-provoking for theatergoers of ANY AGE... and they are never, ever “kiddy” or “teachy.” The tickets come at a fraction of the cost of neighboring theater offerings, and when I think of productions like RAIN, LOOKINGGLASS ALICE, TRACES, HANSEL AND GRETEL (the list goes on and on!), it’s hard to believe the cost of seeing those shows at the New Victory was about the same as seeing a movie down the street!

The educational experience for school-kids who attend these shows (for $2 each!) is absolutely wonderful. The pre and post-show workshops and teacher resource guides masterfully connect the work onstage with the curriculum in the classroom. The Usher program is the best and perhaps only one of its kind. High school kids act as the front line and face of the theater and handle themselves with composure, friendliness and professionalism. They get the chance to experience the world of theater and all of its opportunities while also gaining valuable skills they can take with them in any career path they choose. There are also opportunities for college students, and I experienced firsthand how the New 42 Apprentice program is unlike other internships– instead of fetching coffee and making endless copies, the apprentices at the New 42nd Street function as true members of the staff and are treated as such.

For folks to understand what makes the New Victory so special, they need only attend a performance. They will be welcomed in with a smile, captivated by the work on stage, and warmed by the infectious giggles of the 4-year-olds – and 40-year-olds – beside them.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

as an apprentice, full time employee and audience member

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

Expand role in developing / producing shows, and have programming in the summertime!

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Rating: 5 stars  

Intensive outreach to schools in the NYC area is a dimension of the New Victory that I would like to highlight. A corps of teaching artists fans out across the city each day to public schools, immersing lucky classes in mind-opening participatory lessons that multiply the experience when those students bus in to see a show the next week. Demand for the shows by schools is intense, with waiting lists despite the New Vic running several performances a day. The New Vic offers these shows to schools at a nominal ticket price -- a couple of bucks. With arts programs cut to the bone the students are clearly hungry for the fine productions, jumping in their seats with delight and plunging cognitively into the performances. So while the New Vic certainly is a great deal for their public to also see the array of global talent in children's theater, at a very good price, this is the tip of the iceberg for a brilliant institution increasing the dimensionality, aspirations and happiness of our next generation.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've accompanied the teaching artists to classes to see the outreach in action. And I bring my own kids to the public performances.

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

None

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of advisors?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Likely

How did you learn about this organization?

Through a friend

What is this organization's top short-term priority?

Increase the scope of impact - while the public program is massive and serves many, many kids in many, many performances, demand is still so intense from additional schools performances that there is a waiting list, and the theater simply does not have the capacity to perform for them.

What is its top priority in the long run?

Create a generation of kids with an appreciation of arts that serves their own actualization and leads to a better society.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

The New Victory has been the premiere presenter of performing arts for kids and families since 1995. As the first establishment to open on “The New 42nd Street”, the New Victory always has been and continues to be an innovator in the performing arts.

The magic ingredient to the New Vic’s success is its approach to young people. Whether they are audience members, interns or employees, they are not pandered to. The work onstage challenges them to explore what they think they know in all of the performing arts disciplines and opens new worlds for them to experience.

The young adults who participate in the Youth Corps Program (apprentices and ushers) are viewed as essential members of the organization. Apprentices are contributing members of the departments they work in and collaborate on many group projects that have a direct effect on the audience experience at the theater.

The ushers are, quite simply, the face of the organization. Whether they are showing families to their seats during public performances, corralling buses on 42nd Street during school time performances or working with kids at a pre-performance family workshop, the ushers provide the unique fuel that powers the organization.

For so many children in NYC, the New Vic was their introduction to the performing arts -- becoming a stepping stone to greater appreciation of, and participation in, the arts. Kudos!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I was on the original staff of the New Vic

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

Put a Youth Corps Program in every major city in the country

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

What is unique about this organization?

It's commitment to families

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I worked in the Education Department at The New Victory for 2 years and loved every minute of my time there. Like many former New Vic employees, moving out of the NYC area was the only reason that I left the company, and I still miss the people and the work every day.

With its amazing programming and education opportunities, The New Victory provides young people in the NYC-area with outstanding theatrical experiences and the ability to learn more about the world of theater by participating in the Youth Corp or Apprentice Program as a high school or college student. This is an organization that cares deeply about encouraging young people to reach their highest potential.

I will forever be a strong supporter of this organization and dream of a time where every major city in the country has a place like The New Vic to go to...a place where parents, teachers, theater enthusiasts and young people can come together to experience high-quality theater, learn, and feel like they are a part of a unique community.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

This organization helped me grow personally and professionally. It also opened my eyes to countless theater companies from around the globe who are creating amazing theater.

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

Bring them to Chicago! Or give them an opportunity to mentor up and coming non-profit organizations on how to involve the community in their work through education and outreach programs.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I worked at The New Victory for 6 years and only grew more impressed with the organization, the audiences, and the staff as time went along. The only thing that got me to leave was a cross country move.
This is an organization that is truly living its mission.
The theatre for kids and families is high quality and inventive. Many of my favorite shows of all time are New Vic shows, regardless of the fact that I am not a kid and I do not have a family. They present companies that are some of the best in the world.

Their Education programs are amazing. I love knowing that New York City kids are seeing these shows for $2 a ticket. And that so many of them receive workshops to extend their theatrical experiences.

The ushers and apprentices are a vital part of the organization - and if you ask them (and I encourage you to talk with the ushers when you go to the show - they have lots of great opinions on theater and the world) thay will tell you flat out that they are proud to work for the New 42/New Victory Theatre and feel very much a part of the organization. They also receive job training and workshops to make sure that they 'graduate' from the workshops with lots of skills to get their next jobs.

The prices are completely reasonable for families and the physical building is very family and kid friendly. This organization actually LIKES kids.

This is a non-profit that is doing good work. And it is doing it at the absolute highest quality. It is recognized worldwide in the Theatre for Young Audiences realm as the best of the best.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Education, arts, as an audience member

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

Help them expand their reach and start incubating new TYA shows.

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 4 stars  

I went to a performance of Flamenco dance at the New Victory about a year ago, which was an entrancing piece of world-class music and dance. It was exciting to see a mix of ages in the audience-- the performance was appropriate for school age kids, but in no way merely children's fare only. What a great resource to involve all of us in the performing arts!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

experiencing the arts

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

expand its reach beyond NYC-- I was visiting from out of state, but would love to have an organization like this in Southwest Ohio, where I live.

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

My son is 3 years old and I have been incredibly impressed with the offerings for his age group put on at the New Victory Theater.

They offer concerts in their 499 seat venue by accomplished children's musicians, such as Dan Zanes, they also offer intimate programming in the Duke Studio space where the young audience members have activities and face to face interactions with puppets and storytellers.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

interactions with my son. Exposing him to the arts at an early age.

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

expand the programming for all year!

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