Long Island Children's Interactive Theater

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Long Island Children's Interactive Theater LI

Who are you?
My name is Leonora Knight. I am an NYU School of The Arts graduate with a BFA in acting, a professional singer/keyboard player, private voice and piano teacher, mother, and wife.
For more information about me, see the About Me page.
What is this interactive theater thing?

I believe it takes story time to the next level. The children jump into the book and act it out using props, figurines, and their own emotions and expression, making this children's interactive theater a unique experience for all.

I'm a teacher/parent/librarian, and I want you at my school/library! What do I do?
Books Alive is available through the NYC Dept of Ed (active vendor), Nassau, Westchester, and Eastern Suffolk BOCES, Suffolk and Nassau County PTA database, NY State Library Database, Suffolk and Nassau County Library Database, or I can be contacted directly.
How many children can each program accommodate? (Updated!)

Audience size varies greatly; I adapt to classrooms, libraries, or even assemblies! I recommend a 250 maximum for school assemblies. I can also handle large crowds for library concerts. Classroom workshops should be 25 and parent-toddler shows should be limited to 30 children. Contact me or call me to ask for more information.

What do you need from the school, in terms of space, equipment, or help?
I send CDs to the schools in advance, so I like to have one teacher (or the music teacher) to act as a liason to ensure the CDs are being played for the children. It is also helpful for the teachers to pre-pick students who will be performing on stage for each song. This prep work makes for an excellent, more enjoyable experience for the students and includes the teachers as well. For equipment, I only need 2 large tables.
What do you need from the library, if it's there instead?
A room with enough space to move around in. Tables and chairs, a large carpet circle, or carpet squares.
How long does it last?
About 45 minutes for each class or assembly.
How long have you been doing this?
I've done musical storytime at Borders, Books & Music, and wrote many of the songs for storytime at The Heckscher Museum of Art, but in 2004 is when I started putting everything together as "Books Alive," the 45 minute musical/theatrical program in schools and libraries. I added the "Interactive Concerts" in the summer of 2005.
What is the best program for the end of a summer or winter reading program?
The interactive concert is the best program. All the songs are written to familiar books, involve movement, acting, fingerplay, and of course, singing!
Are you insured?
Yes, I am fully insured and incorporated.
Why do you do this?
I majored in acting at NYU because I already could sing and dance. I wanted to be a triple-threat. I'm getting older and I want to use my talents and experience in a different way. I guess one reason I do it is because I can use all the arts to support the school curriculum. Writing music for children comes easily for me, and I enjoy the challenge of capturing the mood of a book through music. We piloted Books Alive in Jesup, Georgia, several years ago and witnessed how the power of the arts can stimulate reading in young children.

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