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Downstage Arts is committed to creating access to the performing arts and performing arts education for all people.


Downstage Arts believes that any student who wishes to participate in the performing arts should have the access and support they need to be successful.  By removing boundaries, students can participate in the arts and have the opportunities to tell their unique stories. We believe that art should provoke thought and invoke justice. We are dedicated to utilizing theatre in a way that gives voices to and changes the narratives of marginalized communities in Chicago and beyond.

Why we are needed

Expenses for one year of pre-higher education training:

Voice lessons ($2,200 per year)
Dance Lessons ($1,800 per year)
Theatre Classes ($1,800)
Theatre Camps ($1,200)

Experiencing professional plays and musicals ($400)
Professional videography equipment for self tapes ($500)
Travel to auditions ($50-$1000)
Application Fees ($200)
Food and lodging at the auditions ($500)
Masterclasses and summer programs ($1,000 - $10,000)
Vocal health aids such as steamers and humidifiers ($200)

Totaling more than $20,000 per year just to be competitive as a young artist.

Students who can afford to spend the necessary money per year typically don’t need to worry about working to save money (or make money to help support their families). They are the lucky few who will get into the college programs. Simply put: this two-tiered system is unacceptable.  

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