Veorna-based Pushcart Players has been an award-winning touring theater company specializing in arts education for children since 1974. Twice nominated for an Emmy, Pushcart is the recipient of numerous state and private awards for excellence and innovation. Pushcart brings substantive musical theater, workshops, and residencies to young people and their families in schools and theaters nationwide. The company has traveled more than 2 million miles nationally and abroad, from the little red schoolhouse to the White House. And now they’re offering a video of one of their works, Ellis Island: Gateway to America, for free for a limited time.
“During this unprecedented and seemingly turbulent time, we’re all experiencing how the things we do as a community to unite us are the very things that could now make us ill. Many of us are working remotely, our children are learning in virtual classrooms, and some of us are challenged with nurturing our creativity,” wrote Ellen Beattie in an email to followers of the theater company.
This spirited musical production for family audiences takes a loving look at a small group of immigrants who come to the United States in 1903; they provide a symbolic representation of the many émigrés from a multitude of nations that have reached our shores. Their stories illustrate the struggles and achievements of past generations in creating and preserving the precious legacy of freedom and democracy in America.
“We encourage teachers to use the presentation and study guide for a lesson plan,” continued Beattie. “We encourage families to watch and discuss the play together. Most importantly, we encourage you to take care of yourself and each other.”