Asheville, NC- Asheville Creative Arts (ACA), Asheville’s professional children’s theatre continues to build on new initiatives unveiled in its 5th Milestone Season, growing into its 6th year with innovative MainStage productions, including BUGS!, plus the launch of its mobile unit with the touring puppet musical, SLUG & SNAIL, the continuation of its Incubator Series with PETE & PICKLES, and expanded educational outreach with after-school classes in acting and summer camp.  Details will be unveiled at ACA’s annual Fall Fete held Oct 11, which will also feature food, drink and live entertainment.  Tickets and registration information will be available on ACA’s website, to book mobile unit, matinee tickets, or for more information contact Abby Felder at 914/830-3000 or  

“It’s amazing and very exciting to have reached our 5th Year Milestone” says ACA co-Founder Abby Felder, “and we are continuing our growth as we look to our next 5 years with a renewed commitment to using sophisticated aesthetics and creative storytelling, and embracing diversity, equity and inclusion.  The arts are a powerful tool for social change and each of our shows and educational programs aims to provide a creative and profound space for our young people and their families to practice abstract thinking and empathy necessary for creating a more just and peaceful future world.”

Building on last season’s productions of socially engaged and artistically sophisticated new works this new season will again feature expanded programming and enhanced community engagement, growing connections with community partners at Hood Huggers to ensure reach and inclusivity. The coming year will feature diverse artists engaging in the art and act of storytelling, with a goal to empower young people from all backgrounds to see the value in their own stories and points of view, while modeling the tools for their story’s expression.  

Upcoming productions and programs, to be held at the company’s new theatre home, Magnetic 375 (375 Depot Street) include:

BUGS! (July 2018) an original, immersive musical created by ACA resident artists, Gina Stewart and Brenda Gambill of Jonesalee

Comprised of a series of vignettes, this play with music observes and explores the tiny, teeming with life and “life lessons” of the insect world.  Rich with scientific fun facts, folklore and legend, the story of BUGS is told by musician/actors who lead audiences on an imaginative romp to explore the interconnectedness and interdependence of all life forms, and cause and effects of actions.

Both Mainstage productions include weekday matinee performances with specially discounted and free tickets, plus pre-show study guide designed in accordance with Common Core benchmarks for learning, and post-show Q&A underwritten by generous individual donors: THIS GIRL… will offer these performances for students and campers on spring break from April 4-6 and for elementary school students from April 10-13 with tickets at $5 each; BUGS! will offer performances for camp groups at 1pm with tickets at $7 each, and will have special outreach performances in partnership with Hood Huggers in Burton Street Community Peace Garden (47 Bryant Street).

SLUG & SNAIL (mobile unit available for booking October 2017) an original toy theatre puppet piece by Abby Felder

Continuing ACA’s mission to ensure accessibility to diverse audiences, the Mobile Unit was launched to tour innovative and sophisticated works for families into the community, and begins with SLUG & SNAIL, a charming and uplifting puppet performance in which a Snail that loses its shell meets a Slug who tries to prove Snail is actually better off without it.  They begin a journey to determine whether life with or without a shell is better, which puts them in situations sometimes frightening, sometimes funny, but ultimately leads them to friendship.  It is a 30-minute interactive experience with a whimsical score that encourages singing along. Meant to be enjoyed by ages 4-8, this 30- minute solo performance (with 30 minute set-up and 30-minute strike) is appropriate for classroom and multipurpose rooms, and can include a pre-or-post show workshop with puppet building activity tailored to each audiences’ needs that may address literacy, community building, and give participants the opportunity to work with music, writing and other media.

INCUBATOR SERIES (May 2018 at 2:30pm)

A series that presents script in hand readings to nurture new work.  Audiences are invited to give feedback and participate in the growth of the piece during post-sharing moderated Q&A, this season the Incubator Series returns with a new adaptation of the beloved children’s book, Pete & Pickles, written by Katie Jones.


After-School Theatre Class: CREATING CHARACTERS

6 Tuesday Evenings from Sept 19 – Oct 23, 2017 from  5:15 – 6:45

Students ages 9-12 will learn the basics of embodying a character in a play. We will focus on analyzing text, finding character movement and speech, and creating the character’s history.  A playwright’s script is set. A director’s vision is clear and firm. And within those parameters, an actor has limitless possibilities for creating a character that is interesting, beautiful and uniquely their own. Tuition for 6 weeks is $200 per student- scholarships available.  

Plus Summer Fun with Summer Camp, 2 sessions over 1 week June 2018, and more details TBA.

ABOUT THE COMPANY: Asheville’s critically acclaimed, award winning theatre devoted to creating works for children of all ages, Asheville Creative Arts was founded in 2013.  ACA has the following mission: To produce, present and create professional and innovative theatre for the very young to the young at heart, and embrace diverse cultures with a main stage season of productions of musical, literary adaptations, and puppet based work that push the boundaries of children’s theatre; to train the next generation of artists; and to ensure that all families in Western NC and beyond have access to theatre arts through outreach such as touring, and “in-reach” such as specially discounted performances for school and community groups. In honor of contributions to the cultural landscape, Asheville Mayor Esther Manheimer declared July 18, 2014 “Asheville Creative Arts Day;” ACA has been awarded 3 Grassroots Partnership Awards- a grant from the NC Arts Council, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, distributed by the Asheville Area Arts Council and CLICK, CLACK, MOO received a grant from Puffin Foundation West.

LISTINGS INFORMATION:  Visit Asheville Creative Arts’ website for information on how to get tickets (; For more information on booking school or camp performances, or registrations for educational offerings, contact or call 914/830-3000, additional information about ACA’s 6th Milestone Season available at For more information about The Magnetic Theatre visit                

Theater for young audiences in Asheville starring George Awad presented by Asheville Creative Arts