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Over 70 New Senior Theatre Plays Published

Jul 18, 2013, 8:28 a.m.

More than 70 new Senior Theatre plays have been published, expanding the number of works available for older performers. The shows were chosen from hundreds of submissions for ArtAge’s newly released 2014 Senior Theatre Resource Center catalog. They include skits, short plays, musicals, and more. The resources are useful for Senior Theatre companies, senior centers, retirement communities, community theatres, and any site where older adults gather. There’s something for everyone, from rank amateur to skilled professional.

ArtAge, founded in 1997, produces materials and workshops for Senior Theatre performers and directors worldwide in keeping with the company’s mission to help “older adults fulfill their theatrical dreams.”

The new catalog includes more than 400 items available from the Senior Theatre Resource Center. The catalog may be downloaded from the ArtAge website, www.seniortheatre.com.

ArtAge has the world’s largest collection of plays, books and materials for older performers. Its president, Bonnie L. Vorenberg, does speaking and consulting to help others create and maintain their Senior Theaters. Visit the website for more information.

Senior Theatre Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is Senior Theatre?

Senior Theatre is “a form of drama designed specifically for older adults with a focus on active participation.” It uses techniques that accommodate the abilities of seniors. Scripts feature a majority of older characters who are in situations that revolve around the older persons’ lives.

  1. Why has Bonnie Vorenberg, Senior Theatre expert, said “Senior Theatre is one of the fastest growing forms of the performing arts?”

In 1999, there were 79 companies. Now in 2013, there are over 780 performing groups in the ArtAge Senior Theatre Resource Center’s database, the largest in the field. The growth comes from the stamina of the new generation of seniors. This large group is comprised of healthy and well-educated older adults with a positive outlook on aging. Many have had some experience on stage, so they’re familiar with the arts and the joy of being on stage so they return to theatre.

  1. Who’s in Senior Theatre? What’s the average age?

Performers range from professional to amateur in both rural and urban settings. Ages usually span between 50 to 90 years but most are in their late 60’s and 70’s.

  1. Who sponsors Senior Theatre?

Commercial, professional and community theatres, senior centers, retirement homes, colleges, universities, and social service organizations sponsor Senior Theatres. The largest commercial Senior Theatre has a staff of 160 and over a million-dollar budget.

  1. What kind of theatre do seniors enjoy?

Most of the Senior Theatre plays are comedies with a majority of female roles. They are performed as staged readings or fully mounted shows. The most popular forms are short plays, skits, and musicals like follies and variety shows. Other forms include monologues, scripts based on the lives of the participants, puppetry, and many others. Some groups perform theatre for social change where they present shows that highlight aging, intergenerational problems, health concerns or other issues. Offstage, seniors also work as solo performers, playwrights, or they act in films and commercials. Many help backstage, as ushers or in the box office. They also take classes in all elements of theatre at colleges and universities.

  1. Why participate? Senior Theatre promotes better physical, mental, cultural, and spiritual health while it builds vital social connections for all kinds of seniors, statistically proven.
  2. What is the mission of ArtAge’s Senior Theatre Resource Center?

ArtAge helps participants fulfill their theatrical dreams by providing education, information, and inspiration to worldwide customers. We distribute the largest collection of Senior Theatre plays, books, and materials, publish Senior Theatre Online, the largest Senior Theatre e-newsletter, and operate www.seniortheatre.com, the largest Senior Theatre website. It’s #1 on Google!

  1. How can we reach the ArtAge Senior Theatre Resource Center?

Call 503-246-3000 or 800-858-4998; fax to 503-246-3006, email to bonniev@seniortheatre.com or visit www.seniortheatre.com. Contact person: Bonnie L. Vorenberg, Senior Theatre Expert, Speaker, Author, and President of ArtAge.

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