Education

Education & Community Engagement 

Society for the Performing Arts' Education & Community Engagement Department creates affordable opportunities for the discovery, development and celebration of creativity on and off stage by engaging all people in the Houston area through diverse programs and cultural partnerships. From professional development for teachers to pre-performance activities for the whole family, SPA's education and community engagement programs offer something for everyone!

Arts Talks are pre-performance discussions and demonstrations led by touring artists, artistic directors or local experts. These short lectures provide context and insight prior to each main stage presentation.

Performance Preludes highlight local performing arts groups within the Houston community by offering performance opportunities in front of SPA audiences prior to each main stage presentation. Sponsored by HEB.

Master Classes provide local dancers and musicians the rare opportunity to learn from SPA’s world class touring artists and are held in community centers and schools all over the Houston area.

Student Matinees introduce thousands of students to the performing arts through discounted daytime performances geared specifically for K-8 audiences. TEKS-aligned study guides that focus on STEM and arts integration are provided for each matinee performance.

Teacher Workshops are professional development opportunities for K through 12 educators. Whether a dance teacher is looking for new techniques or a science teacher wants to integrate the arts into the core curriculum, SPA provides workshops with teaching tools and strategies that work. Sponsored by Conoco Phillips.

The Wells Fargo Student Art Contest, now in its 18th year, aligns with one of SPA’s main stage presentations, which serves as inspiration for the contest. Hundreds of students submit their artwork to SPA each season; winning entries are showcased in exhibits all around the Houston area.

Artist Residencies give students personal access to SPA’s touring artists from around the globe. Artists visiting Houston as a part of an extended residency engage students through master classes, demonstrations and conversations over several days.

Movement Toward Literacy is a partnership with Writers in the Schools that explores the connections between the written and spoken word and dance to support learning and creativity in the classroom. Sponsored by Phillips 66.

Education Discounts like the Student Series and Teacher Club offer discounts to students and teachers for evening main stage performances.  


If you have any questions or would like to request additional information, please email education@spahouston.org.



Volunteer Houston sponsors SPA's Education & Community Engagement Intern through the 
2016 Shell Nonprofit Internship Program



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H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Houston Choral Showcase

H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Houston Choral Showcase

Performance Preludes
7:30 PM - 7:50 PM Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Piano Level, Jones Hall
Join us in the lobby prior to the show for a free performance by
Houston Choral Showsase.

Houston Choral Showcase is the longest performing mixed community choir in the Houston area, originally formed in 1932. The group performs choral arrangements in a variety of popular styles such as pop, jazz, swing, gospel, and Broadway. Houston Choral Showcase is the only mixed show choir for adults in Houston, and talented singers come from far and wide to participate in this distinctive choir, directed by Jen Young. Houston Choral Showcase performs in a wide variety of settings for public and private events all over the Greater Houston area (and occasionally beyond).
Arts Talk for Balé Folclórico da Bahia

Arts Talk for Balé Folclórico da Bahia

ArtsTalk
7:00 PM - 7:20 PM Friday, January 13, 2017

Orchestra Level, Jones Hall
Join us for a free pre-performance discussion with a company member of Balé Folclórico da Bahia.
H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Ad Deum II

H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Ad Deum II

Performance Preludes
7:30 PM - 7:50 PM Friday, January 13, 2017

Piano Level, Jones Hall
Join us for a free performance by Ad Deum II!

Ad Deum II is the Second Company of Ad Deum Dance Company. Ad Deum II has been functioning as a training company under the direction of Randall Flinn, but since Shizu Yasuda took the assignment of the official artistic director of Ad Deum II in 2014, it has become more of an independent dance company. Ad Deum II dancers have traveled across the United States and overseas. This past summer, Ad II went to Europe for two months to work with Children's Camp in Hungary and Spain and also attended Project Dance France and the Fringe Festival in Scotland.
Arts Talk for Pilobolus: Shadowland

Arts Talk for Pilobolus: Shadowland

ArtsTalk
7:00 PM - 7:20 PM Friday, January 20, 2017

Orchestra Level, Jones Hall
Join us for a free pre-performance discussion with a company member of Pilobolus.
H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring MET Too Youth Company

H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring MET Too Youth Company

Performance Preludes
7:30 PM - 7:50 PM Friday, January 20, 2017

Piano Level, Jones Hall
Join us in the lobby prior to the show for a free performance by
MET Too Youth Company.

METdance is a proud of its Houston MET too, youth training company. This non- competitive, concert based repertory dance company is a product of the growth of  METdance. The MET too works to instill a professional work ethic necessary for dance and beyond.  The company members of the MET too program range from those interested in pursing a dance career after high school to those seeking a highly motivated and pro active extra curricular activity to compliment their academic work.

The MET too youth company participates in many local festivals in Houston as well as the New York City Dance Alliance Dance Convention in November; Open House performance in December; JUMP Dance Convention in January, 24 Sev//en and NUVO Dance Convention in March and April as well as the end of the year concert in May. MET toos also have a chance to perform at the Miller Outdoor Theatre  with the Professional company 2 times a year and take master classes frequently at the Center.
H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Pershing Middle School Dance Company

H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Pershing Middle School Dance Company

Performance Preludes
5:00 PM - 5:20 PM Saturday, January 21, 2017

Piano Level, Jones Hall
Join us in the lobby prior to the show for a free performance by Pershing Middle School Dance Company.

Arts Talk for STOMP

Arts Talk for STOMP

ArtsTalk
6:30 PM - 6:50 PM Friday, February 10, 2017

Orchestra Level, Jones Hall
Join us for a free pre-performance discussion with a member of STOMP.
H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Intuitive African Dance and Drum Culture

H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Intuitive African Dance and Drum Culture

Performance Preludes
7:00 PM - 7:20 PM Friday, February 10, 2017

Piano Level, Jones Hall
Join us in the lobby prior to the show for a free performance by
Intuitive African Dance and Drum Culture.

Intuitive African Dance and Drum Culture, founded in 2007 provides "edutainment" service via performance, workshops and classes in West African drum and dance, including cultural history.  Intuitive's performances include those at Jones Hall with the Houston Symphony; Wortham Theater; Discovery Green; Houston Museum of Fine Arts; the Bayou Arts Festival; the Children’s Museum of Houston; Rice University to name a few.  In addition, Intuitive has taught West African dance for several schools and dance companies including, Prairie View A.M. University; Dance Houston; Crowd Pleasers Dance; HCC; Klein Oak Dance Club; Project Row Houses; and the Haven Center.  
Arts Talk for STOMP

Arts Talk for STOMP

ArtsTalk
1:00 PM - 1:20 PM Saturday, February 11, 2017

Orchestra Level, Jones Hall
Join us for a free pre-performance discussion with a member of STOMP.
H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Vitacca Dance Project

H-E-B Performance Prelude featuring Vitacca Dance Project

Performance Preludes
1:30 PM - 1:50 PM Saturday, February 11, 2017

Piano Level, Jones Hall
Join us in the lobby prior to the show for a free performance by 
Vitacca Dance Project. 

Kelly Ann Vitacca is a native of Chicago, Illinois. She received her Bachelor’s in Performing Arts in Dance Performance at Oklahoma City University and extended Arts Management master studies at Columbia College. Vitacca currently choreographs and master teaches nationally while directing Vitacca Dance Project Pre-Professional School. Vitacca is an innovator in pre-professional training programs and has acted as an international dance program consultant since 2006. Vitacca is a Leo’s International Choreography Award recipient, a Dance Chicago Outstanding Choreographer, an Illinois Artist Fellowship Award recipient and Top Choreographer for Youth America Gran Prix (Houston). 

In 2008 Vitacca joined Houston Ballet’s artistic staff as Artistic Coordinator and Chaired the Dance/USA Host Programming Committee.  In 2010 Vitacca was appointed Dance Houston Director of Programming where she developed numerous programs and acted as the educational programs liaison, supporting dance educators and filling the dance class needs within Houston Independent School District (HISD) schools and at-risk facilities. She has served as Production Manager for Dance Houston and the five Stage ROOTS Festival. She has served as programming panelist for the Texas Weekend of Contemporary Dance; acted as Choreographic Adjudicator for Houston Royal Academy of Fine Arts; and has been a Guest Master Teacher at the ISAS Arts Festival. Ms. Vitacca was cast as an expert ballet coach on MTV’s MADE television series, which continues to air nationwide.

Vitacca’s vast artistic achievements, arts management experience, industry networks and dedication to advance the dance art form allows her to pioneer Vitacca Dance Project. 
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