To share, encourage, and validate the creativity of children by performing original works of theatre, music and dance adapted from literature written by young authors.
To motivate children to write and think creatively and to enhance writing education in schools by sharing drama-based approaches to writing instruction.
To elevate the status of theatre for young people by providing full time employment to theatre artists.
Founded in 1978
Child’s Play Touring Theatre was the first theatre company to realize the value of children’s own writing and perform exclusively stories and poems written by young authors. Combining the important, imaginative writings of children with the craftsmanship of professional theatre artists and educators, we created a unique stage where children’s voices can be heard, examined and treasured.
A nationally recognized, 501(c )3 not-for-profit organization, we inspire young people to read, write and think creatively. Our goal is to help children understand the value and significance that writing and reading has on their lives.
Over the years, we has developed multiple partnerships with other arts education organizations to bring enhanced arts curricula to schools and communities throughout the United States. To date, we have reached over 4.5 million children, educators and adults through workshops, residencies, after school programs, and summer camps, and have performed the original works of over 30,000 young writers.
The future dreams of the company include reaching an even greater audience through the website, increased international touring, an educational television program which will give young writers a chance to see their work produced for television, and the publication of their vast repertory in video, and anthology form.
How we got started
Victor and June Podagrosi founded Child's Play while Victor was teaching theatre at Parkland College in Champaign, Illinois. Asked to stage a performance of children's writings for a Young Author's awards ceremony, Victor was delighted with the sophistication and storytelling abilities he discovered in children's writing.
Believing they had identified a unique form of educational theatre, the Podagrosis formed Child's Play Touring Theatre and began traveling to rural schools in east central Illinois.
They developed workshops for classroom instruction and toured throughout the area before moving to Chicago as the base for the organization in 1982. From there they continued to evolve and have now traveled throughout the country, visiting 45 states from Alaska to Florida and Maine to California, to bring their programs to the nation’s youth.
See our which is over 40 years! History Timeline
Our founders Victor and June Podagrosi founded the organization Childs Play Touring Theatre more than 40 years ago.
Here is the background of each of them for you to learn more about their background and love for children and the theatre.
Co-Founder and Executive Director
More about - June Podagrosi
A Creative Legacy - Remembering Co-Founder
More about - Victor Podagrosi
Each year CPTT present an award to honor individuals and organizations who have demonstrated outstanding commitment, generosity, and service to the arts community.
Past Recipients of Victor Awards
Our Actors and Alummi
Our Acting Company is comprised of individuals and organizations who have demonstrated outstanding commitment, generosity, and service to the arts community.
See Our Actors and Alumni
See Our Videos
We have put on several plays over the past 40 years. Want to learn more about our organization?
Our Past Videos
Listen to Our Songs
Visit our soundcloud to listen songs that we have used in many of our procuctions.