Education

Photo: “Yellow” Cast of SEUSSICAL the Musical (August 2022)
Photo credit: Kayla Ninneman Photography

YAA Principles // Conduct Policy


Upcoming Programs


Spring 2024 Youth Drama Classes

Youth Theater from a Christian Worldview. Open Window Theatre’s Young Actors Academy (YAA) offers top-quality theater education and performance opportunities for youth ages 4-18.

Our semester-based educational classes run every other week in the fall and spring, and participants in our semester classes receive first-priority registration for our summer musical and other performance opportunities. View our info packet to learn more or register now.

Spring 2024 Registrations are now CLOSED. However some classes may still accept late registrations into mid-February. If interested, please call us at 612-615-1515.


Synopsis of YAA

Participants 4 to 18 years old gain confidence, develop creativity and learn theater fundamentals as they participate in skills-based acting games & activities during biweekly classes culminating in an end-of-semester showcase performance.

GUIDING PRINCIPLES

  1. We believe creativity is a gift from the Divine Artist to be used in service of the common good.
  2. We believe creative training is a highly valuable tool for the mental, emotional, and spiritual growth of young people.
  3. We believe that artists, as ambassadors of empathy, should treat others as they themselves wish to be treated, with love and mutual respect.

About the Instructors

JEREMY STANBARY
OWT Founder & YAA Coordinator

Jeremy holds a BA in Fine & Performing Arts with 20-years of experience producing and performing theater professionally while advancing his uniquely redemptive vision for the arts. In 2003, Jeremy began touring full-time with his original one-man and small-cast dramas. For the next 8-years, he performed for tens of thousands of people both nationally and internationally, reaching countless others via cable television. In 2011, Jeremy & Sarah founded Open Window Theatre, which has become a mainstay of the Twin Cities arts scene. Jeremy also has over 10-years of active experience in theater education for youth, developing and growing the E-Rhapsody Youth Theater program between 2007-2016. The legacy of the E-Rhapsody program lives on now as the Young Actors Academy.

SARAH STANBARY
OWT Co-Founder & YAA Instructor

Sarah is the co-founder of Open Window Theatre and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay with a dual degree in Theatre Performance and Arts Management. Sarah toured both nationally & internationally with husband Jeremy between 2007-2011 and also served as a youth theater instructor for their E-Rhapsody Youth Theater program from 2007-2016. Aside from her acting talents, Sarah is also an accomplished ballroom dancer and dance instructor.

JOSHUA ZAPATA-PALMER
Instructor (Open Window Theatre location)

Joshua Palmer is a Twin Cities, MN film and theater artist. He has a BA in Theater Arts from Bethel University and has worked as an actor, director, producer, writer, teacher, clown, host, dancer, musician, and mime in Minnesota, Florida, Arizona, California, Poland, and South Africa. His film work includes the upcoming fantasy web series Hidden Falls, and the award-winning short films Bear, The Paper Jam, Core Value RangersWe Are KickballRosebird, Kowalskis, and Dust & Ashes. In theater, he has collaborated as an actor or director with the National Theatre for Children, Children’s Theatre Company, MN Opera, Prairie Fire Children’s Theatre, Arts Garden, MN Renaissance Festival, Juggler and Mime, MONDO Juggling Fest, Lakeshore Players, and Valleyfair. He regularly performs with the children’s show Lalo’s Lunchbox. Whether he’s telling stories, teaching classes, or creating new works, Josh desires to spread joy and hope in everything he does.

JILLIAN EHLKE
Instructor (Open Window Theatre location)

A graduate of the University of Northwestern with a major in theater and a minor in dance, Jillian is a multi-talented performing artist who was seen on the Open Window Theatre stage three times in as many years, first in A Christmas Carol in 2021, followed by George Orwell’s 1984, and most recently in her critically acclaimed portrayal of Emily Webb in Thornton Wilder’s Our Town. In addition to other local professional theater credits, Jillian was also featured in the independent mini-series film project, Hidden Falls.

Jillian is just as passionate about education as she is about performing, and we’re blessed to have her join the YAA team as an instructor this season!

AMANDA WEIS
Instructor (Church of Saint Paul satellite location)

Amanda Weis is a Twin Cities-based performing artist, private vocal instructor, and stage director. Ms. Weis has a BA in vocal music from the College of St.Benedict and her MM from the University of MN, Duluth. She has performed leading and supporting roles with such companies as Minneapolis Musical Theatre, Duluth Playhouse, St. Croix Off Broadway Dinner Theatre, Gilbert and Sullivan Very Light Opera Company, Really Spicy Opera, and the Paul Bunyan Playhouse, among other houses. Ms. Weis has directed youth musicals for Totino Fine Arts Academy, The Phipps, and the Young Actors Academy. In July 2017, she assistant directed Mozart’s Don Giovanni in Waimea, Hawaii, for the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival. She also music directed High Fidelity for Minneapolis Musical Theatre, earning herself a nomination for Favorite Musical Director with the Twin Cities Blogger’s Theatre Awards. Ms. Weis was the vocal director for the 2019 national tour Nick Jr Live, a new work from Nickelodeon and VStar Entertainment. In 2024, Ms. Weis will be directing youth musicals at The Phipps and Children’s Performing Arts, and will be music directing the Guthrie’s Spring Break Triple Threat Camps.


Questions?

Contact: youth@openwindowtheatre.org or Call: 612-615-1515

Personal Conduct Policy

All staff and contract workers at OWT are required to sign off on our Personal Conduct Policy. Download and review that policy by clicking below:

Download Conduct Policy

About

Participants gain confidence, develop creativity, and learn theater fundamentals as they participate in skills-based acting games & activities during biweekly classes culminating in an end-of-semester showcase performance.

Guiding Principles

  1. We believe creativity is a gift from the Divine Artist to be used in service of the common good.
  2. We believe creative training is a highly valuable tool for the mental, emotional, and spiritual growth of young people.
  3. We believe that artists, as ambassadors of empathy, should treat others as they themselves wish to be treated, with love and mutual respect.