The Rapidian

Creative Youth Center hosts Characters that Lived

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The Grand Rapids Creative Youth Center invites the community to witness young authors' character-creations come to life through the performance of local actors in this hilarious improv comedy show.
A moment from last year's The Sketches that Lived

A moment from last year's The Sketches that Lived /Eric Tank Photography

Tickets for Characters that Lived

Tickets available here

Learn more about the Creative Youth Center here

Grand Valley State University professor Brett Colley pulled inspiration from last year's performance, "The Sketches that Lived."

Grand Valley State University professor Brett Colley pulled inspiration from last year's performance, "The Sketches that Lived." /Brett Colley

The Grand Rapids Creative Youth Center (CYC) will host an all-ages improv comedy show on Wednesday, October 26, 2016, at 7 p.m. in the Wealthy Theatre (doors open at 6:15 p.m.). The CYC's young authors have created zany characters who local professional actors will animate in this hilarious performance. 

Director Amy Gascon returns to the CYC after her success with last fall's performance, The Sketches that Lived, in which CYC kids wrote scenes that professional adult actors brought to life. The CYC hosted an encore performance of The Sketches that Lived (in collaboration with Gilda's LaughFest) last March, and entertained a full-to-capacity Dog Story Theater. Just like last fall, the CYC will collaborate with local professional actors to portray the young authors' writing--this time focusing on characters written by third to fifth grade students in the Afterschool Adventure program.  

"These young writers are so inventive and clever," said Laura Peterson, a volunteer at the CYC. "I can't wait to see how the actors will interpret these characters." 

If you want to encounter the interior lives of a character who can only say "tuna" and "bleep blob bloog" (Zoe, Grade 5), someone composed entirely of electricity (Pablo, Grade 5) and a parakeet-owning delivery-ward doctor who one day dreams of being a princess in a palace (Libanesa, Grade 3), Characters that Lived is the show for you and your family. 

Characters that Lived promises a riotous, family-friendly evening that not only entertains--it sustains the CYC's one-of-a-kind writing and tutoring programs for students aged 6-18. The CYC prepares kids for life's adventures by supporting their writing and amplifying their voices. Aiming to create a strong sense of identity and enthusiasm for learning, the CYC provides opportunities for kids to become published authors (CYC books and merchandise will be available for purchase before and after the main event). The programs are free for all students attending Grand Rapids Public Schools or living in Grand Rapids. 

"I love seeing the collaboration between students and the community in projects like this," Peterson said. "I'd encourage everyone to come." 

Tickets are available on the Wealthy Theatre website for only $15. The purchase of higher-priced tickets greatly support the CYC's programming--purchasers will receive gifts of gratitude. All proceeds from the event benefit the Creative Youth Center and the kids who learn there. 

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