Broadway Theatre League of Utica has received a $2,500 Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Health and Wellness Award to support their Students on Broadway Program. This one-of-a-kind program is uniquely designed to reveal all aspects of the theater to at-risk, underserved youth, those living in group/foster homes, low-income neighborhoods, schools, drama clubs and more. Students must be enrolled in a local school and in grades K-12th.

“The Excellus BCBS Health and Wellness Awards demonstrate a corporate commitment to support local organizations that share our mission of helping our members live healthier and more secure lives,” said Eve Van de Wal, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield regional president. “We recognize that addressing social determinants of health is vital to the health and wellbeing of our communities and we are pleased to support Broadway Theatre League of Utica with this funding to help remove barriers to education by providing exposure to arts and culture though live theatre for children who might not otherwise have this opportunity.”

Funds from this award will go directly to purchase tickets for students who will attend a show presented by Broadway Utica at The Stanley Theatre. “We know that the theater is special, and we believe every student should experience the magic that happens on stage.” stated Kristen Matteson, Community and Youth Coordinator at Broadway Utica. “It is critical in today’s world to have outlets for our youth, a safe place to express themselves, to have their voice heard and learn from peers. Through this program, each student will be able to witness every intricate piece of this puzzle and watch it all come to life on stage. We are extremely grateful Excellus BlueCross BlueShield sees how important this is too”.

Broadway Utica’s Students on Broadway Program has welcomed thousands of students over the years. Such productions as Blue Man Group, Bluey, Annie and more, all had children and their mentors/teachers in the audience on behalf of this program.  Applications can be found on along with eligibility requirements to be the recipient to attend a show. For additional information you can contact Kristen Matteson at or by calling 315-624-9444.

Students on Broadway is a program that offers a complimentary ticket to a touring Broadway production presented by Broadway Utica at The Stanley Theatre. The program is geared towards at-risk youth, underprivileged students, group homes, Big Brother Big Sister programs and more.  The goal of the program is to allow all youth an opportunity to see the theatre and enjoy all the offerings of live theatre, an experience they may never get to see due to financial constraints, transportation issues, living situations, etc. The theatre is a place of powerful messaging, hope and acceptance. We believe in giving all students a chance to witness the magic of the theatre.

Broadway Theatre League of Utica provides arts entertainment as well as educational and cultural experiences for the Central New York region. Founded in 1957, Broadway Utica exposes the community to high-quality live theatre and the performing arts, while also providing opportunities for youth to participate in, and benefit from this exposure.

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