I am in my 6th year with Blue Apple Players and from the beginning I knew that Blue Apple Players Education Programs were exceptionally unique. There are no other education programs in the city of Louisville who do what we do in the way that we do it. Our programs are interactive and ask the student to focus, assimilate, participate and perform all while building essential life skills such as learning to compromise, collaborate, share and give voice to our ideas. wherever we work, we provide a completely non-competitive environment, establishing a safe place to explore new ways of expressing emotion in our bodies and voices through drama activities.

2011′s elementary school child is vastly different from 2000′s elementary school child and our Department reflects those changes. Since its’ inception in 2000, there have been dynamic shifts and changes within our department that have corresponded to the shifts and reflected the changes within the children that we meet.  Our workshops and drama programs provide flexible, breathable, dynamic curriculum that respond directly to the group of students we are working with at the time.  From our involvement with 21c Museum to bringing drama clubs to many schools without them – our work is constantly evolving to fill the needs and resound the voices of our community’s youth.

As Education Associate of Blue Apple Players Education Department, I have been actively involved in over 50 schools, libraries and community centers this year alone. Having this unique opportunity allows Blue Apple to reach a multitude of students diverse both socio-economically and ethnically. What I have learned over the years I have been with Blue Apple is that all children crave an outlet that provides them with a nurturing and safe environment to explore their creativity while encouraging their growth socially, academically and personally. And this is what Blue Apple’s education programs provide. This is what Blue Apple’s education programs give; a unique gift to the community in which we reside.

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Last week, a single, teen parent – a junior at Shawnee High School – wrote to us that “the Blue Apple program makes me want to come to school.” This simple and eloquent statement gets to the heart of the conversation we need to be having in our community.  We have the opportunity to have a game-changing effect on the future of education in Louisville.  If we act wisely, our efforts will result in a well-educated population that possesses the creative problem-solving skills needed to be a part of the 21st century workforce.

The Jefferson County Board of Education is in the process of selecting a new superintendent and we must be united in our demand that whoever is selected to fill this post must embrace the power of a curriculum that puts an emphasis on the Arts.  The data is clear.  Children with an arts-rich curriculum in every measurable way outperform their peers who do not have this advantage.  Dr. James Catterall’s longitudinal study, DOING WELL AND DOING GOOD BY DOING ART, in fact provides great incentive to make arts experiences available to all young people.  For example, his data shows that students from lower socio-economic sectors double their chances of graduating from high school if they attend a school with an arts-rich curriculum.  Beyond that, and this is incredible, his research also shows that children who attended an arts-rich school but did not partake in the arts programming also did better than the control group.  It seems that the Arts engender a culture that is inquisitive, creative and intellectual.


  1. Call the Jefferson County School Board, and tell them that the next Superintendent must embrace the power of Arts Education and put Arts back in ALL of the schools.
  2. Call your child’s school and let them know that you want your child to have the benefit of an Arts-Rich education.
  3. Volunteer for an Arts organization that provides programs for young people.

Since I opened with a quote from one of our students I think it is fitting to close with the following…

“During Drama Club I learn more than friendship. When I’m in my classroom I don’t raise my hand or speak out, I just be the girl in the corner being quiet, but now I’m the girl who speak up and get the question right. I just want to say thank you!” – Anonymous evaluation comment from Blue Apple middle school program.

Please… be a part of this important initiative… together we can change lives…

Paul Lenzi – Executive Director

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Summer Storytime Fun!

We are happy to announce several upcoming FREE Storytelling Performances! Join us  for this lively, interactive storytelling program where storytellers dazzle with tales that tickle the funny bone and touch the heart. A performance to delight all ages; the session encourages active listening, comprehension and language development – all skills vital to early literacy. Saturday May 28th, 1:00 PM at Wallitsch Nursery & Garden Center. June 11th, 11:00 AM and 12th, 1:00 PM at the Summit Festival of the Arts. Also, over the summer, we will be at the Okolona Library June 16th at 2:00 PM , the Highlands Shelby Park branch July 21st at 2:00 PM, the St. Matthews branch August 6th at 11:00 AM, and the Fairdale branch August 6th at 2:00 PM – All of these events are free of charge!

  • May 28th, 1:00 PM – Storytelling Performance at Wallitsch Nursery & Garden Center
  • June 11th, 11:00 AM – Storytelling Performance at The Summit Festival of the Arts
  • June 12th, 1:00 PM – Storytelling Performance at The Summit Festival of the Arts
  • June 16th, 2:00 PM – Storytime at Okolona Public Library
  • July 21st, 2:00 PM – Storytime at Highlands Shelby Park Public Library
  • August 6th, 11:00 AM – Storytime at St. Matthews Public Library
  • August 6th, 2:00 PM – Storytime at Fairdale Public Library

* Did we mention they are FREE?!!

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The Blue Apple Players will be featured on KET’s, LOUISVILLE LIFE – A series about the events, people and culture that shape the River City. The program will air state wide approximately 20 times, and will have its’ first airing on Derby Day, May 7th at 7:00 PM. It will also air on May 8th on KET-2 at 12:00 Noon, and many other dates (see below). In addition you can view it on KET’s web site http://www.ket.org/louisvillelife/ It is only a five minute segment but covers both our touring and education programs.

  • KET: Saturday, May 7 at 7:00 pm EDT
  • KETKY: Sunday, May 8 at 8:00 am EDT
  • KET: Sunday, May 8 at 10:00 am EDT
  • KET2: Sunday, May 8 at Noon EDT
  • KET2: Monday, May 9 at 7:30 am EDT
  • KETKY: Monday, May 9 at 7:00 pm EDT
  • KETKY: Tuesday, May 10 at 6:30 am EDT
  • KET2: Thursday, May 12 at 7:30 pm EDT
  • KET: Friday, May 13 at 12:30 am EDT
  • KETKY: Friday, May 13 at 8:00 am EDT
  • KET2: Friday, May 13 at 5:30 pm EDT
  • KETKY: Saturday, May 14 at 7:30 am EDT

Dr. James Catterall – An interview was done for KET’s One to One with Bill Goodman – Each week, host Bill Goodman and a variety of interesting and engaging people talk about the state of the world we live in. Important, memorable, and provocative, this series offers an array of interviews spanning a rainbow of guests including politicians and philosophers, artists and authors, and the leading thinkers in Kentucky. This Sunday, May 8 at 1:00 pm EDT on KET; on Tuesday, May 10 at 7:30 pm EDT on KET-2; and on Thursday, May 12 at 6:00 pm EDT on KETKY. In the interview, Dr. James Catterall, professor of Urban Schooling at UCLA, discusses his research on the roles of the arts in human development, with an emphasis on basic roles of imagery in cognition, and on arts-related instructional and curriculum policies impacting teaching and learning.

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