Civic Ensemble’s ReEntry Theatre Program was started in 2015 to provide an opportunity for members of the Tompkins County community in upstate, NY to participate in arts programming. The 8-week pilot program took place between February and April. Eight participants wrote plays about their life experiences which were performed in staged readings to a sold out crowd at the Hangar Theatre in April 2015.
In 2016, Civic Ensemble is partnering with Ultimate ReEntry Opportunity, a project of the Multicultural Resource Center to bring the ReEntry Theatre Program into the broader effort to improve outcomes for those who have been incarcerated in Tompkins County.
Here’s what last years’ participants had to say about their experiences
This has been a positive experience for me that I believe would be a wonderful addition
to anyone’s recovery or reentry program.
I was nervous at first but this was a new step in my life and I found talent I didn’t
know I had. The exercises and activities for writing and acting helped me
understand emotions and expression.
There’s a feeling of family, like there’s someone in my life.
I wasn’t full of trust for this at the beginning but I learned to
trust the process.
I got to know the Civic artists and understand
that they cared about my growth and development.
The reentry program has changed the way I think
and it has made me want to get more out of life. The program
has given me strength to overcome my obstacles of being a felon.
I have more faith in myself and I was able to use
the things I learned in the program to get a job.
If you or someone you know would benefit from an experience that builds skills, community, and confidence, you may apply online, or by downloading an application and sending it to firstname.lastname@example.org, or dropping it at OAR at 518 W. Seneca Street in Ithaca.