History & Programs

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Our Vision

TADA!’s vision is that all young people grow up feeling successful, creative, confident, accepted, and accepting of themselves. Through the ability of people learning to express themselves well we can break down barriers of racism and inequality and create positive, active citizens.

Our Mission

TADA! Youth Theater’s mission since 1984 has been to provide young people from different social, racial, economic, and cultural backgrounds with musical theater programs that inspire them to learn, be creative, and think differently through high-quality productions, positive youth development, and education programs.

Values

We value and have a deep passion for musical theater as an art form that empowers, educates, and transforms people from all different backgrounds.

We value TADA!’s unique programming. Our innovative and responsive approaches to musical theater adapt to the evolving landscape of our community and world, serving and supporting the TADA! Family (board, staff, students, and families and audiences) for over 36 years.

We value creating high-quality, innovative, professional musical theater productions, programs, and experiences that inspire, transform, empower, challenge, and engage our TADA! family and the greater global community.

We value an ensemble-based environment where the TADA! family collaborates as a team and works together respectfully and creatively. All TADA! programs and experiences are rooted in ensemble, and through ensemble based practices, we strive to make everyone involved feel brave to explore and authentically express themselves and their identity. By exploring the depths of others and cultivating empathy, we find space for our true selves to shine.

We value and encourage everyone in the TADA! family to share their voice and be heard. We want our staff, board, ensemble members, students, and families to feel seen, heard, and free to advocate for themselves. We strive to provide leadership opportunities at all levels; in the classroom, rehearsal room, and behind closed doors with our staff and board members.

We value diversity, equity, inclusivity, accessibility, and justice. We value providing all people an opportunity to create, imagine, learn, and experience the joy of musical theater, regardless of race, ethnicity, class, religion, gender, sexual orientation, ability, nationality, and immigration status.We are committed to being an actively anti-racist and anti-oppresive organization, believe that racial division is a key tool of oppression, and that we gain strength and power in learning and sharing our histories, cultures, and experiences. We commit to urgent action, innovation & transformation within the world and in our own organization.

We value professionalism, integrity, and accountability in all aspects of our work. We value highly trained and versatile musical theater professionals who are dedicated ambassadors and champions of TADA! Youth Theater’s mission, vision, and values in person and online. We commit to continuous improvement and professional growth.

We value creating a brave, transparent, and supportive culture of growth through respect, collaboration, and teamwork where the TADA! Family feels empowered to take risks and explore their interests and identities at their own pace in order to grow into kind, empathetic human beings.

We value creating a brave space that encourages and supports creativity where everyone is respected and included. Through supportive ensemble-based productions, programs, and experiences, we see growth in self-expression, risk-taking, and self-confidence.

We value sharing the joy and fun of musical theater with all people every day.

History

TADA! is a unique Drama Desk award-winning nonprofit youth theater that produces original musicals for children, teens, and family audiences. TADA! offers a free, year-round, pre-professional training and positive youth development program for the Resident Youth Ensemble (ages 8-18); musical theater classes/camps for the public; as well as musical theater residencies in NYC schools and community centers. Through TADA!’s high-quality work, young people’s self-confidence and creativity are enhanced, which develops advanced skills in leadership, communication, responsibility, collaboration, and problem-solving – skills that help with growing up and are essential to their success both in school and in life. Esteemed TADA! Ensemble alumni include Academy Award winner Jordan Peele (now a member of the TADA! Board of Directors), Kerry Washington (Little Fires Everywhere, Scandal), Josh Peck (Grandfathered, Ice Age, Drake & Josh), Mizuo Peck (A Night at the Museum 1, 2, and 3), Sasha Allen (The Publics’, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow Is Enuf), Amar Ramasar (Principal Dancer, NYC Ballet and lead in Broadway’s, West Side Story), Ricardo A. Zayas (City Center’s Evita, Film –West Side Story), and Sheldon Henry (Tina, The Tina Turner Musical). Ensemble Members and Alumni have also appeared on Broadway in The Lion King, Kinky Boots, Matilda, Carousel, Hamilton, The Prom, Hair, and Head Over Heels.

A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

Overview of Programs