Education & Engagement Programs

For Theater Lovers of All Ages

Educational programs are a vital part of the Goodman’s mission. The Goodman provides opportunities to explore not only the world of our productions, but also the related ideas and themes that resonate within our lives. The following FREE programs are offered for theater lovers of all ages! For more information or to be added to the mailing list for any of our programs, please contact the education and community engagement department at 312.443.5581 or

  • Student Subscription Series

    For Chicago public high school teachers & students

    A national model for arts education for the past 26 years, the Student Subscription Series creatively supplements reading, writing, critical thinking and communication skills both inside and outside the classroom. Special student matinee performances of Goodman productions are supplemented with exclusive teacher training workshops throughout the year. Participating schools also receive classroom sets of scripts and study guides for each show they attend, and post-show discussions with cast members. In-class visits with Goodman artists and staff can even be offered to requesting schools on a case by case basis!

  • Cindy Bandle Young Critics

    For 10th & 11th grade girls in Chicago and the suburbs

    A joint venture between Goodman Theatre and the Association for Women Journalists, this program introduces young women to theatre criticism and the world of professional writing. Participants are given press night tickets to every production in the Goodman’s season as well as one-on-one mentoring from professional journalists in the AWJ. They write reviews and features on several Goodman shows, attend bi-monthly workshops on writing and other theatre topics, and have the opportunity to interview directors, actors and playwrights associated with Goodman productions.

  • PlayBuild | Youth Intensive

    For 14 to 18-year-old students in Chicago and the suburbs

    This program gives students the opportunity to learn skills from local theater professionals in a six-week summer intensive with a focus on critical thinking, literacy and storytelling. Designed to validate the voices of students, get them to examine their own potential for creativity, and introduce them to all elements of the creation of theater, PlayBuild Youth Intensive is an ensemble-building program that culminates in a public presentation of an original performance created by the participants.

  • Musical Theater Intensive

    The Musical Theater Intensive provides pre-professional experience for young artists wishing to pursue a musical theater career. Working with a team of talented Chicago artists led by Music Director Doug Peck, students this summer will examine musical theater from Hello, Dolly! to Hamilton

  • Youth Arts Council

    For 14 to 19-year-old students in Chicago and the suburbs.

    This initiative allows past participants in Goodman programs to stay involved with the theater. Committed to exposing their contemporaries to the wonders of live theatrical productions, members act as ambassadors in their communities and schools, collaborate with youth councils at other theaters, and lead theater-based workshops for their peers and younger children in this leadership development program.

  • GeNarrations

    For adults 55 and over in the Chicagoland area

    GeNarrations is a writing workshop for adults 55+. Based on themes raised by the Goodman’s mainstage productions, participants develop personal narrative performance pieces which they ultimately have an opportunity to perform in a public forum. The Goodman offers at least two six-week sessions each season, attracting approximately 30 participants each. This program is presented in collaboration with the City of Chicago’s Department of Family and Support Services as well as session-specific Community Based Organizations.


    CONTEXT, our issues series, engages our community—here at the theater and across the city—in conversations that both illuminate our productions and act as catalysts for deeper exploration. Unlike post-show discussions that focus primarily on the production, CONTEXT events concentrate on particular issues raised within the plays and explore how they resonate in today's culture. CONTEXT offers public space for debate and discussion.


    Goodman Theatre and the Center for Performance and Civic Practice have together launched NOURISH, a multi-year partnership that envisions a more just and equitable Chicago. Apply now to join us July 19-22 for one of our single day workshops aimed at community leaders, activists and teachers; experience the potential of arts-based community-led transformation.

Sponsors Become a Sponsor