4th Wall Theatre Company has been working on expanding its reach since being featured in season six of Detroit Performs.
Detroit Performs caught up with 4th Wall Theatre Company Co-Founder and CEO, Katie Mann, to see what they have been doing to help people of all abilities all over the country with the educational tools they’ve created online.
Detroit Performs: What has 4th Wall Theatre been up to since Detroit Performs visited?
Katie Mann: Well, our second company, 4th Wall Backstage has launched on the national scale with much success! With our curriculum online now everyone can teach this population about the wonders of theatre. Also, (Co-Founder and Artistic Director) Annie (Klark) and I have been invited to speak at conferences at the national level. Back home in Michigan, 4th Wall Theatre has had their best year teaching 2,017 students! (And how ironic is that that in the year 2017, we taught 2,017 students.)
DP: Any events that are coming up at 4th Wall you’d like to let the public hear about?
KM: Our annual summer camp at the Detroit Opera House will take place August 13-17, 2018.
DP: How did being featured on Detroit Performs help 4th Wall Theatre’s reach?
KM: People from all walks of life were reaching out to us, saying, “We saw you on TV!” Our students’ families and communities were thrilled to be on TV and to be recognized for their talents in their communities.
DP: What were the 4th Wall Theatre students’ reactions to watching the segment?
KM: We were stunned by the editing and production team! How it was put together showed so much respect for our students. And that ending! We can’t cry without hearing our beloved Miss KK say, “If there are butterflies in your stomach, put them on your shoulders and they’ll help you fly.” What a great closer! And the students’ reactions? They loved it! They love watching themselves. It was a win-win-win.
DP: What is the most important thing you’d like for a viewer of the 4th Wall segment to take away from it?
KM: People with disabilities have talent! They deserve to thrive, not just survive.
DP: How can people help out 4th Wall Theatre?
KM: Not all of our students can afford class with us. There is a scholarship fund that is supported by the public.