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From its beginning, ARIEL Theatrical has been about more than musical theatre – much more. Gail Higginbotham, Founder and Artistic Director, has dedicated her life to the idea that “every child is intrinsically and inherently valuable” and that all individuals have the power to make choices that will impact others and the world around them. All that is taught and modeled by the staff at ARIEL is inspired by this philosophy. Ultimately, it is our hope that lessons learned will transcend the stage and affect the way young people conduct themselves at all times. We encourage participants of all ages to recognize the opportunities and resources they enjoy with a sense of gratitude and that they are therefore responsible for their part in making the world a better place.

Over the years ARIEL has presented hundreds of productions. As each story unfolds, belief is suspended for a time and audiences are swept away. They travel to distant lands, make-believe places, or even back in time, without leaving their seats. The young people in our casts are part of the magic as they transform themselves with costumes and makeup and use their blossoming acting skills to create compelling characters that walk, talk and look differently than they do. Imagination may fuel these on stage adventures but respect for others is paramount as we consider each journey.

The world is currently in a precarious state. With a global pandemic, financial uncertainty, racial tension and civil unrest, we truly stand at a turning point in time. While the ARIEL nonprofit bylaws require our neutrality in regards to political movements, campaigns, candidates and legislation, and we do not make official public statements regarding political or social issues, we firmly stand by the principles that have guided our organization from the beginning.

We are grateful to have been an influence for good in so many lives. As we continue to stand for Accountability, Respect, Integrity, Excellence and Leadership it is our goal to inspire others to adopt and embrace these principles in their own lives. We hope that the world can begin to heal and that ARIEL will continue its role in that process, one day at a time, and one young person at a time.

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