Community Theatre and the performing arts are such a valuable piece to every community.
For centuries, theatre has been a way of bringing people together. It has been a place to be entertained, to learn and to connect with one another.
Yet, the arts and community theatre aren’t always recognized for how they help the world go ’round. So today, we want to give you a couple reasons as to just how important they really are!
Promotes a healthy community
We all know music and dance can contribute to a healthier body and mind. We’ve been using it to lift our spirits for centuries! There are so many emotional and physical benefits to musical theatre and you can check out some of them in a recent post of ours right here!
Most people agree engaging in any world of the arts improves our lives. A community is only as strong as all of its members. When they’re happy and healthy, there’s a domino effect on the community at large. It massively impacts people’s involvement, their kindness towards others and their contribution.
Can help reduce crime and violence amongst youth
Community theatre is an amazing, collaborative opportunity for individuals to express themselves and feel seen; and it’s especially important for youth! This outlet builds confidence and strengthens relationships, making them less likely to engage in criminal and violent activity.
It helps give them a voice, build empathy, gain problem-solving skills, practice teamwork and more. Even the stories and content of the musicals they perform can help them learn perspectives that influence better understanding and skills on coping with hardship.
Through studies, it’s been proven nearly 90% of Canadians believe that having youth participate in the arts such as theatre helps to deter youth crime within communities.
Musical theatre and the performing arts provide an essential sense of connection amongst communities – and not only for the people on stage. While being a part of a cast provides you with an opportunity to build relationships, it also gives the audience members a feeling of connection to the arts and to other theatre-lovers around them.
It creates a community of it’s own that’s founded on passion and love for the arts. These days, we tend to stay inside a lot more to watch movies and TV shows. So, theatre gives us a form of entertainment that’s focused on being around people and is one that benefits your community directly.
It’s been proven that Canadians are 2X more likely to feel more connected and as if they belong to their community by engaging in live music events on the regular than those who don’t. It helps create connections across all kinds of barriers – and we need that these days more than ever.
Community theatre is also a great outlet to practice and build creativity. It’s a safe space to learn problem-solving, challenge yourself and build better skills for creative thinking. The more people involved in community theatre, the more creative-thinkers we have in the community. The more creative thinkers we have, the more innovative we will be at solving problems and building a better future.
Theatre also contributes to the education of everybody involved, especially young people. Theatre provides a safe space for kids to try new things, learn about their own strengths and express themselves.
The arts have been proven to be beneficial in preventing dropouts amongst youth. It helps encourage more engagement and overall helps improve performances in school and life. Theatre shows them they are capable of greatness, helping them build the confidence to become strong leaders and emotionally intelligent community members.
Even attending the theatre as an audience member, we are still being involved in the community spaces through a shared love of the arts. And this allows us a safe, welcoming space to learn about things that are happening as well as the issues in the stories on stage, which we can take and apply back into our communities.
Strengthens community involvement and contribution
Theatre and the performing arts can also be responsible for helping strengthen people’s engagement within the community. 90% of Ontarians agree that the arts help bring people together into one community from across various backgrounds, and adults who engage in live performances are 38% more likely to vote, be a part of events within the community or volunteer their time.
It brings people together, promotes civic engagement and inspires us to stand up and work more as a collective people. It’s been shown that those who participate in the arts are more inclined to volunteer, remain in good health and be happier with their lives. The more we give community members the opportunity to be entertained, feel connected and enjoy themselves, the happier they will be and the more likely they are to give back and support the community in return.
And that was only some of the benefits that highlight the importance of theatre!
Having community theatre brings a lightness and joy to what can sometimes be a heavy world. It’s a collaborative, engaging outlet where people can get healthier mentally and physically. Then, all of that starts to reflect back into the community at large.
So get out there to support your local theatre communities!
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“The stage is not merely the meeting place of all the arts, but is also the return of art to life.” —Oscar Wilde