PlayhouseSquare's International Children's Festival

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The International Children's Festival returns to PlayhouseSquare - it's four days of fun and games, performances and activities lead by artists from around the world. And, it's a chance for attendees to learn something about other cultures and perspectives through the arts. We introduce you to some of these arts ambassadors.

Many of the spaces in PlayhouseSquare where the International Children's Festival will take place were built during an era when industrial cities like Cleveland were booming and needed more office space, warehouses and manufacturing plants. But as times changed, and the economy collapsed many of these spaces were abandoned. Thankfully, some of these buildings have been re-purposed. In his book, “Shattered Dreams Revisited: The Death and Rebirth of the Midwest Industrial City," author Lauren Pacini discusses the re-birth of forgotten spaces.

For over 25 years, up-and-coming musicians between the ages of 12-18 have had an opportunity to learn from the best musicians in the world: members of the Cleveland Orchestra. Through the Orchestra's "Youth Orchestra" program, teens are tutored in the fine art of playing together in an orchestra setting. It's also a way for the Orchestra to increase public participation in music. For the young musicians accepted into the program, the time spent with their mentor is more than a music lesson; it's also a way of learning about themselves and how to reach their goals of one day becoming a professional musician.

And we're off to Milwaukee, and the Public Museum, for a glimpse into the daily life of pirates.


Cindi Szymanski, Playhouse Square
Author, Lauren Pacini, Shattered Dreams Revisited: The Rebirth of the Industrial City
The Cleveland Orchestra, Youth Orchestra
"Real Pirates, at the Milwuakee Public Museum

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