2005 Report: Touring Performances
Bringing educational theater to youth
in 1976, Blue Apple Players is dedicated to the creation and
production of high quality musical theater for young audiences.
Reaching across social, economic and geographical boundaries,
its productions and educational theater programs feed children’s
imaginations and challenge them to examine important life
our legacy is the body of new work that has been generated
by co-founders Geraldine Ann Snyder and Paul Lenzi. The repertoire
of 36 original musicals by Snyder and Lenzi reflects three
decades of experience with young audiences and a commitment
to producing quality material that genuinely captivates young
audiences and their families. Most of the material was written
because good musicals for this audience, that also can be
toured to eclectic venues, are hard to find. These are not
“kiddie shows,” but intelligent pieces that are
respectful of our young audiences.
Ann Snyder and Paul Lenzi have written a show for children
that adults - and this is a virtual miracle - can sit
through without distress. The dialogue is genuinely inventive,
not just a series of childish colloquialisms.
Greg Swen, The Courier-Journal, Review of THE THREE PIGS
Blue Apple Players tours at least three original productions.
Touring a production entails scheduling and renting theater
space in six states, marketing to over 80,000 teachers in
ten states who are within traveling distance to the venues,
booking groups interested in seeing the show, and providing
teachers in each state with lesson plans that link the show
with state academic standards and core content.
company includes a cast of four to six actors plus three support
staff members. This self-sufficient group of artists goes
into a different theater space almost every day and mounts
a full scale musical production. Blue Apple Players’
touring company has a fabulous reputation among the technical
directors of venues in Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee, Ohio,
Georgia, and West Virginia. They report Blue Apple Players
is easy to work with using words such as professional, honest,
Appalachian Homespun Yarns - August 31, 2004-October
Hansel and Gretel - October 26, 2004-December 17, 2004
The Tortoise and the Hare - March 15, 2005-May 20, 2005
2005: 134 Total performances
Kentucky Performances (45%)
School Field Trip Performances (83%)
Family Performances (Saturdays) (2%)
Regional Performances (55%)
Contracted Performances (15%)
Players performs in six states and attracts audience from
ten states. School groups travel an average of 40 minutes
to see a Blue Apple Players production.
FY 2005: 49,850
students, 5600 teachers and parents
- 548 different
- 64% of booking
teachers had never made reservations with BAP before.
- 60% of schools
attending have previous booking history with BAP.
- 45% of schools
attending have 60% or more of their students participating
in free or reduced lunch programs.
- 15% of students
attending received free or discounted tickets.
- 42 venues used
during FY 2005.
- 35% Professional
- 35% College/HS
- 28% Elementary
- 2% Community
- We used two
brand new venues: Niswonger Performing Arts Center, Greeneville,
TN and the Drama Center, Cookeville, TN.
Every adult audience
member is given a one-page survey to return if they wish to
provide us with feedback on the production. Richard Lichvar,
Research Analyst at US Bank, assists Blue Apple Players with
evaluation design and analysis of the data.
We ask audience
members to rate 11 attributes on a scale of one to ten, ten
being the highest possible score. The attributes are: overall
experience, ease of making reservations, bus loading/unloading,
theater, length of performance, time of performance, cast,
sets and costumes, music and sound, price/value, and lesson
- 31.9% of survey
respondents gave all 11 indicators the highest score.
- The average
rating for all attributes was never below 9.
- In response
to survey feedback from past seasons, we hired set designer
Gerald Kean to build updated sets for Hansel and Gretel
and The Tortoise and the Hare. The percentage of respondents
who gave “sets and costumes” the highest score
(10) increased nearly 18% (from 60.9% to 78.7%).
- 78.7% of students
have only experienced live theater as part of their school
program or school trips
in FY 2005, we learned there are five basic motivating factors
for teachers to choose a Blue Apple production for a field
trip experience. These motivating factors are:
- Previous memorable
experiences with Blue Apple Players and our reputation of
quality children’s theater
- Direct mail
- Time, location,
and affordability of the field trip
- Exposing students
to live theater
- Program Content
and coordination with state academic standards
teachers have to say. . .
“We attend every year in the spring. Your
production meets our Language Arts objectives.”
Kindergarten Teacher, Marietta, GA
attended several of your productions. The price, safety
and location are assets.”
1st Grade Teacher, Lafayette, IN
is a return visit for me, as the teacher. It is affordable
and very well done - written and performed. Many
of my students and parents had never seen a theatrical
performance. All enjoyed it.”
Primary Teacher, Pikeville, KY
thought it would be a great experience for the students.
The Blue Apple Players have a great reputation.”
1st Grade Teacher, Somerset, KY
Apple Players are wonderful performers. We attend every
year to strengthen our arts/humanities areas.”
Primary Teacher, Bowling Green, KY
at the request of the Kentucky Opera, Blue Apple assisted
their staff in using our touring model. The November 11, 2004
test performance was so successful artistically and financially,
that Blue Apple will continue to help KYO expand what has
come to be called “The Blue Apple Model” by the
KYO staff. Blue Apple has also helped the Kentucky Museum
of Art and Craft with its educational marketing and has been
approached by the Louisville Ballet for similar help for a
new state-wide touring program. The needs of families in our
region are great and deserving of quality arts.