Red Bank Theatre for Young Audiences Provides a Theatre Experience for All

“Behold, I do a new thing.” Isaiah 43:19

In years past, the United Methodist Church of Red Bank had a large, vibrant youth program built around volleyball. But times have changed, and sports teams and activities are readily available. Covid put a damper on many church activities, and youth group is one of them.

With many local theatre companies charging tuition for participation in their plays, UMCRB supported a fledgling theatre company and attracted 22 youth from across Monmouth County. These teens came together from various high schools and varied faith traditions and through the production, morphed into a company – a community. “Love, acceptance and welcome are all hallmarks of the Christian faith,” says Bonnie Deroski, “and theatre can provide a rich forum for promoting those values.”

Bonnie continues, “Theatre is an important art form, and all children and families should be able to attend live theatre performances. Theatre promotes empathy, love of reading, engages imagination and helps develop attention span. Many of the local theatres offer quality theatre, but at prices that many families cannot afford.” Built on inspiration from of Joseph Papp’s Public Theater and Jon Bon Jovi’s Soul Kitchen, plays presented by RBTYA presents plays at a pay-what-you-can ticket price and there is no charge to youth to participate in the productions.

This past Saturday, December 3rd, RBTYA presented, Tinker Bell, to delighted audiences of all ages. Directed by Melissa Moore Reimertz, Tinker Bell featured a cast and crew of high school students from around Monmouth County. Tinker Bell was written by Patrick Flynn, based on the works of J.J. Barrie and produced by special arrangement with The Dramatic Publishing Company of Woodstock, Illinois. RBTYA looks forward to their next production in the spring of 2023. RBTYA is an outreach of the Youth Ministries of the United Methodist Church of Red Bank.