I want to support SPARC!    Give Now
Home Mobile
Home Mobile
previous arrow
next arrow

About Our Stages Program

SPARC’s acclaimed Stages program provides community-based performing arts training to 3rd grade students in Richmond City Public Schools, with a focus on increasing access to these important life skills. This in-school program brings together students, schools and communities to provide a rich experience that positively impacts academic achievement and life skills.



Elementary Schools

Students Per Year

Hours of Instruction

Years Running

How It Works

Under the guidance of professional teaching artists, students experience the process of creating and applying their academic themes or personal experiences into writing, resulting in a performance script. Together they select music, song, movement and dance. Each student receives 26-30 hours of training per year in the three primary disciplines of performing arts – acting, singing and dance. The students are mentored by a team of two or three teaching artists at a teacher/student ratio of about 12-to-1.


SPARC measures the educational progress of STAGES students using the Virginia Oral Langauge Standards of Learning (SOLs). To do so, SPARC developed a quantitative measurement instrument with the expertise of a specialist in the educational evaluation field. Through this assessment, SPARC documents an average of 53% student improvement in a single year. SPARC also shares its evaluation process and data with schools and other arts partners in the region.

For More Information

Contact our office at sparc@sparcrichmond.org or (804) 353-3393 ext. 222.

Support STAGES

The STAGES program is provided free of charge to schools and neighborhood centers. More than 600 young people in the 2nd and 3rd grades are profoundly influenced by this program, thanks to the generous support of individuals, corporations, and foundations. Help sustain the STAGES program by giving a gift to SPARC today!