This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.
Education & Outreach

Art plays a vital role in the creation of a healthy society. We believe in the power of art to affect social change. That is why Penumbra’s unique educational tools are designed to increase awareness and celebrate difference.

Our free study guides are a favorite of patrons and teachers. The guides let you dive into the rich historical details that contextualize each thought-provoking play. Teachers can combine standardized lesson plans with classroom workshops and post-show discussions, giving students an unparalleled opportunity to proactively confront issues of racism and social justice in a safe, supportive environment.

Summer Institute is an intensive theatre training program where junior high and high school students work with professional artists to build community and challenge ideas, using theatre to make a real difference in the world. Students write and perform in an original ensemble piece about issues important to them. After graduation, alumni work with staff mentors to create and execute social change projects inside their own communities. Dozens of these projects have been completed with astounding results.

Sarah Bellamy
Education Director – Penumbra Theatre
Education & Outreach
Horace J. Bond Ambassador Program - Macalester College, the University of Minnesota and Hamline University faculty select exceptional undergraduates who work with Penumbra to address social issues on campus.

Fellowships - Providing support for students from high school through graduate school to explore musical and dramatic theatre, literary criticism, and dramaturgy. 

Internships - Behind the scenes and close to the action, our internship programs give students the opportunity to work and learn at the same time.

Quilting Circle - A community experience you can look forward to annually. Learn new skills and make an original art piece that is featured in our holiday musical favorite, Black Nativity.

Salon Series - Guest lectures, roundtable discussions, symposia and post-play discussions offer patrons the opportunity to think critically about our art and continue the dialogue.

Student Matinees - Offering students ages 14 and up the opportunity to explore the African American experience through artistically excellent productions. Bring your students to see a show and stay afterwards for a post-play discussion.

Study Guides - Free and online, Penumbra's study guides include contextual essays, artist interviews, and much more. Each guide includes curriculum for grades 9-12 by high school educators to enhance learning in your classroom!

Summer Institute - Training the next generation of activist artists! Students study the craft of performance while learning about social justice to promote change in their own communities.

The Wilson Lab - This archival project will preserve the legacy of the preeminent African American theatre company in the nation. The Lab will make personal interviews from founding company members, videography, literature and more available for research.

Workshops - Exploring the power of art to change lives and communities. Join us at the Science Museum of Minnesota or book your own RACE workshop today!

The Penumbra Theatre Company Quilt - See the quilt squares that now illuminate the walls of our theatre.

Meet the Education and Outreach Team!

H. ADAM HARRIS : Teen Programs Coordinator
Adam is the Teen Programs Coordinator with Penumbra Theatre Company and a former Summer Institute Intern. As a professional actor, he was recently seen in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Children's Theatre Company); The Way of Water (Frank Theatre); Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Much Ado About Nothing, (Guthrie Theater); and Penumbra Theatre's production of The Amen Corner at the Guthrie Theater. Adam received his B.F.A from the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theater Actor Training Program along with a minor in African American Studies. Adam recently toured prisons, homeless shelters, and community centers in a production of The Seven with Ten Thousand Things Theater. His primary role is connecting passionate young leaders with Penumbra's Summer Institute program and working with educators to bring theatre for social change into their classrooms.


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