847-866-8049 info@piventheatre.org

Spring Youth Classes

February 5 – April 23


“It has become clear to me that what the Pivens teach has as much to do with human development as it does with preparation for a life in the theatre.  I am not a teacher.  I am merely a father of five who has watched his children, and many other children, now adults, grow under the extraordinary values given them, in part, through their Piven Theatre Workshop experiences.”

Dick Cusack

Advisory Board Member

NEW! Just added: High School and Middle School Classes

YPC Directors’ Institute

Saturdays 2:00pm-5:00pm

March 12 to April 2



YPC Director Morven Higgins will be leading four weeks of Directors’ Institute, from 2pm to 5pm on Saturdays (perfectly timed for students currently enrolled in High School Performance Lab). This collaboration-focused directing program is an invaluable learning experience for any aspiring theatre artist, where students will have the chance to work side-by-side to generate and workshop new material—some of which may be further developed for the Spring 2022 Shakespeare Capstone (more info on that below)!

The class will be structured around different student-led workshops so the ensemble will get to explore a lot of new material and different directorial points of view with YPC ensemble members leading workshops. Not only will it be a lot of fun to be directed by a fellow actor, it’s excellent preparation for summer and college-level programs that often focus on student-led pieces and devised work. It’s a great resume builder! 

Admission is by invitation or resume submission. For high school students.

Spring Shakespeare Capstone Performance

Saturdays 12:00pm to 5:00pm

April 9 to May 22 (including a weekend of performances)


For 7th-12th grade students

Our Spring Shakespeare Capstone is a performance experience that will incorporate both classical text and contemporary responses to Shakespeare’s works, including story theatre retellings, poetry, adaptations, and more. You will be cast in one or more scenes and/or Shakespeare-inspired stories. You will rehearse for 6 Saturdays starting April 9th, and we will present at least two performances the weekend of May 20-22. 

We will be asking for self-taped auditions by Monday, March 14th. Please email education@piventheatre.org ASAP if you wish to audition, and we will send you further instructions.

*Payment plans available, as well as special discounts for current spring students.


3rd-8th Grade Classes

Intro to Piven for 3rd-5th Graders

Saturdays, 9am to 10:00am

Feb 5 to April 23


Perfect for the young student who wants to begin exploring theatre arts in a fun, supportive environment! Students stretch their creative muscles through theatre games while they begin to discover the art of storytelling and improvisation. This class provides the perfect introduction to the Piven training technique!

Virtual Intro to Piven (VIRTUAL)

Saturdays 11:00am-12:00pm

February 5 to April 23


Join a dedicated ensemble of young storytellers and explore a unique, virtual approach to the Piven method. We use improv games to create original characters, locations, and stories, all while taking advantage of Zoom to hone on-camera technique. Students will gain skills as actors, collaborators, and creative writers. Get ready to play and let your imagination soar!

Advanced Performance Ensemble – 6th-8th Grade

Saturdays 9:30am-11:00am

February 5 to April 23


Students in grades six, seven and eight who have been recommended by their Piven instructor for this advanced program have the opportunity to build work that moves from the classroom to the Piven stage. Under the guidance of their senior instructors, students work within their ensemble over the course of twelve weeks to adapt stories into original performance pieces. This class will culminate in a performance for families and friends exploring the work students have done over the session. Admission is by invitation or resume submission.

6th-8th Improv and Scene

Saturdays 9:30am-11:00am

February 5 to April 23


Students learn about improvisation and scene study in this class that explores all that the Piven Technique has to offer. The class focuses on improvisation as a tool for young actors in ensemble-building and scene rehearsals. Open to new and returning students, especially those who are interested in learning about the techniques employed by Piven’s professional-level youth ensembles.

High School Classes

High School Performance Lab

February 5 – April 23

Saturdays 11:30am-1:30pm


This program is an intensive experience for actors in grades nine through twelve. High School Performance Lab explores the full Piven canon, blending improvisation, theatre games, scene study, adaptation, and directing opportunities. At the end of the program, students perform the work they’ve explored on the Piven stage for family, friends, and the wider Piven community in a special Open Workshop! This class is open to new and returning high school students, and admission is by invitation, recommendation, or resume submission.