Blue Apple Outreach

Commonwealth Theatre Center was formed by the merger of Blue Apple Players and Walden Theatre in 2015 and builds on a shared heritage of excellence and innovation in comprehensive theatre education.


Creating joyful, community-driven learning through accessible, quality arts experiences, and encouraging imaginative pathways to social & academic growth.

Find out more about our programs — from proven favorites to new initiatives — that meet the evolving needs of students, educators, and community partners.

Contact Info:

Heather Burns — Outreach Director

For programming questions and partnership discussions,
email or call 502-589-0084 ext. 315.

Aletia Robey — Outreach Programs Manager

For scheduling and pricing,
email or call 502-589-0084 ext. 305.



Zaynab's Night of Destiny

 Students put on their headphones and embark on an adventure with Zaynab, a young Muslim girl who immigrates to Louisville and has trouble fitting in until she goes on a magical journey of self-discovery. 

Grades K–6


No Turning Back

A live, 2 actor performance highlighting the obstacles and triumphs of Black people using personal perspectives of Kentucky history from the 1860s to the 1970s.

Grades 4–12

In-Person Arts Experiences

= Designates Spotlight Program

No Turning Back – Performance

Grades 4–12

Available January & February 2022 only. Call now to reserve your date!
$400 per performance (100 students max)
Sites who would like to schedule multiple performances on the same day will receive a discount:

  • 2 performances, $700
  • 3 performances, $900

No Turning Back is a live, 2 actor performance highlighting the obstacles and triumphs of Black people using personal perspectives of Kentucky history from the 1860s to the 1970s.

Scenes include: 

  • 1830s: Lucie & Thornton Blackburn escape from slavery and find a new, free life.
  • 1896: Jimmy “Wink” Winkfield describes the career of Black jockeys.
  • 1926: A Black woman recounts the fight for suffrage and the aftermath for Black women.
  • 1937: Siblings tell the tale of the Flood and how it affected the community and neighborhoods of Louisville.
  • 1954: Andrew & Charlotte Wade try to buy a house in Louisville with the unusual support of Anne & Carl Braden.
  • 1960: A young woman defies the discriminatory policies when shopping in downtown Louisville and the “Buy Nothing New” campaign.
  • 1974: A young man talks about being bussed for desegregation.

Readiness Adventure: Dinosaur Dig

Grades Pre-K

Available January–May 2022
$125/workshop | 30 minutes | 30 students max.

Let’s activate our Actors' Tools - body, voice, imagination, and courage. We’ll warm up with some dinosaur movements and then we’ll enter the world of make-believe, pretending to be archeologists brushing the dirt in search of a fossil find, practicing school readiness skills to identify and communicate our learning.

Movement for Stories: Desert Discoveries

Grades K-5

Available January–May 2022
$250/workshop hr. | 30 students max.

Traverse the American Southwest to uncover the wonders of the desert. Students will learn about the desert biome while pretending to be archaeologists digging into the past.

Discover Drama — Virtual Workshop or Residency

Grades PreK–12
Price varies by program. Call for info.

  • $250 per workshop hour
  • $200 per hour residency hour

These fun, energetic workshops introduce foundational acting techniques as students participate in character and story driven theatre exercises.The program may be expanded into a multi- session residency to suit specific grade levels and curricula, including an optional culminating performance. This program can be adapted to suit any age and many different disciplines. A great option for an in-school elective or after school club.

Resiliency – Virtual or In-Person Residency

Grades 4–12
$200/hr. per classroom* (12+ hrs.)

An in-depth residency designed to build confidence, enhance emotional literacy, and introduce the concept of resilience as the natural counterbalance to the negative health outcomes associated with ACEs (adverse childhood experiences). Students will use multiple art forms to explore the meaning of resilience with practical steps they can use to better cope with stress as they become more resilient. Teacher participation strictly required.

Emotional Literacy

Grades 4–12
$200/hr. per classroom* (6+ hrs.)

Drama games, acting exercises and storytelling provide an ideal kinesthetic learning experience for introduction and establishing the foundation of Emotional Literacy. Students will learn to identify the brain science behind why we have emotions, distinguish feelings and their purposes, and methods for processing and communicating. Visual art and writing assignments included; some supplies required.


Grades 6–12
$200/hr. (6+ hours)

This 6-session residency introduces students to youth activism through the arts. Students will observe examples of prominent young leaders to analyze what makes a powerful call to action. Each participant will identify their own issue, compile and organize information and create themed performative art to inspire change. Students will present final projects on the last two days of the residency.

Black History Month Field Trips

$7/student (transportation needed)

Join us at Commonwealth Theatre Center for a performance of No Turning Back. After the performance, audiences will join breakout sessions for a complementary drama workshop, engaging students in active drama exercises exploring themes from the play. Limited seating available - call us for details.

No Turning Back

  • January 31, 2022
  • February 1 and 2, 2022

Distance Learning

(Virtual with live instruction from teaching artists)

= Designates Spotlight Program

Zaynab's Night of Destiny

Grades K–6

Students put on their headphones and embark on an adventure with Zaynab, a young Muslim girl who immigrates to Louisville and has trouble fitting in until she goes on a magical journey of self-discovery. This audio experience includes a picture book featuring original artwork created by Hend Al-Mansour, with multicultural representation inspired by the partner groups that helped shape the narrative: Nur Islamic School of Louisville, Newcomer Academy, Louisville Youth Group, and Imagine Blind Players. A teacher resource guide will accompany the listening experience to spark conversation and increase awareness about Southwest Asian, North African, and South Asian culture, religion, instruments, food, and customs as well as the importance of intersectionality and cultural acceptance. Students will be encouraged to interact with digital tools that will empower them to share and celebrate their own stories about where they come from and what has shaped who they are.

Package 1 ($1,700/school)

  • Unlimited listens of the audio performance for this school year
  • One hard copy of the book for your school library*
  • Unlimited copies of the digital book
  • Teacher Resource Guide
  • 6 classroom workshops - YOUR Night of Destiny!**
    • A live, distance-learning opportunity for your classroom. Students will interact with the central characters from the story and will work together to share their own journeys of belonging and cultural pride.

Package 2 ($500/school)

  • Unlimited listens of the audio performance for this school year
  • One hard copy of the book for your school library*
  • Unlimited copies of the digital book
  • Teacher Resource Guide

*Purchase additional copies of the book for your school at $25/each.
**Purchase additional workshops for the cost of $200/classroom.

Nation In Crisis - Performance

“Civil Rights history is always being created. It’s from our past—and in our present,” says writer/director Keith McGill. “I wrote Nation in Crisis ​to bring history forward so students can learn about it and learn from it - and learn how not to repeat it.”

Grades 4–12
$200 per classroom
Includes video with live discussion, Teacher Guide and Enrichment Tool

Written and directed by Keith McGill, performed by Jacqui Blue

Blue Apple Outreach presents an interactive show that transports students to pivotal moments of the Civil Rights Era. From Little Rock to Montgomery and Martin Luther King, Jr., to a Tuskegee Airman, voices of real people from varying perspectives are brought to life, allowing audiences to encounter the facts and events through a personal lens.

This one-hour program blends pre-recorded videos with live, interactive discussions. Students participate in real-time with professional teaching artists. An accessible program that empowers students to see the human side of history, think deeply about the content, and form their own framework.

This is a distance-learning experience in real time. Schools will need to prepare their classroom so that all students can see/hear and be seen/heard through technology on a date scheduled with our team.

Package 1 ($200/classroom)

Includes video with live discussion, workshop, Teacher Guide, and Enrichment Tool

Package 2 ($200/hr. per classroom -7 hrs. total)

In this 7 session residency, professional Teaching Artists lead interactive sessions including the presentation of one video segment of a Nation in Crisis performance, a facilitated discussion, and interactive theatre games and writing/art exercises focused on content themes.

Connecting Cultures

Grades 6–12

$200/hr. per classroom (10+ hrs.)

Participants establish trust and teamwork through theatre activities, learn elements of drama, and focus on written and verbal storytelling. Objectives are to identify and analyze stereotypes, strengthen emotional literacy, and build community. Also available for in-person residencies.

Arts Engagement On Demand

Movement for Stories

Grades K–3
$500 per school

Pre-recorded videos featuring a professional Teaching Artist guiding students in playing characters and acting out a story. Students will be engaged throughout this literacy-on-its-feet experience as they practice active listening skills with gross motor movement and creative expression.

Spanish Workshops

Teaching Artists guide students in playing characters in Spanish language stories that build vocabulary and grammar. Tales are from European and Latin American traditions.

La Cucarachita Martina (The Little Cockroach Martina)

This beloved tale of a beautiful cockroach and her husband the mouse invites participants to play all of the parts and leaves them with an important message about how to respond when things seem sad. Spanish vocabulary includes Clothing, foods, animals, emotions, and diminutives.

La Pintora y Los Duendes (The Painter and the Elves)

When a painter falls asleep before putting away her supplies a group of mischievous elves decide to redecorate the painter's studio. Spanish vocabulary includes parts of the body, colors, and shape

English Workshops

Adventures in the Deep Blue Sea

Set sail for a two-part journey! First, take a deep dive into imagination as we embody underwater species, and then surface for an alphabetical treasure hunt with a pirate friend.

Adventures in Outerspace 

Let your imagination soar as you embark on a two part adventure through our solar system and to worlds beyond! In this interactive storytelling, students will learn the names and order of planets and discover what makes each of them unique.

There's More to the Story:
Creating a Character Monologue

Grades 4–8
$500 per school

Enrich learning with an artistic project inspired by class content. Students learn how to create and perform a monologue through the viewpoint of favorite fictional characters, moments in history or scientific discovery. Videos provide instruction, clear examples, and bonus costuming ideas. Lesson guide and enrichment tool provided.

Art & Selfie-Awareness

Grades 6–12
$500 per school

An artistic and introspective experience designed for teens and young adults to process creatively during tense times. A series of three videos offers sessions on calming guided meditation, emotional literacy, creativity mapping, “selfie” tableaux acting project and a journey focused visual art project. Lesson guide and enrichment tool provided.