by Jake Speck, President & Managing Director of Studio Tenn
I will never forget being exposed to professional theatre for the first time. It was through a school field trip made possible by government grant funding. I remember sitting in the audience with my classmates and being changed forever. I knew in an instant what I wanted to do with my life. From that moment on I was interested in the stage. I went on to have a successful career as an actor performing on Broadway, in film and television, and at regional theatres across the country. In 2010 I moved back to Nashville to helm Studio Tenn Theatre Company with longtime friend Matt Logan. It was incredibly important to us to provide students with the opportunity to have their lives changed by theatre.
It all came full circle this year when we partnered with local schools to provide student matinees of The Miracle Worker at our home, the Franklin Theatre. I got choked up as I watched kids become engrossed in the story on stage. That I could have a hand in changing a kid’s life like mine had been changed years before was emotional. And it’s not just the kids who decide to go into theatre that we are trying to reach. All students can and should benefit from exposure to professional live theatre. These kids are our future audience members and ticket buyers. Every child and adult in Nashville deserves an opportunity to have their lives enriched by the arts.
Studio Tenn will perform The Sound of Music at the Franklin Theatre through June 17. Visit www.studiotenn.com for tickets.