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Walltown Children's Theater Teaches More Than Dance And Drama

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DURHAM — In the peaceful calm of a west Durham neighborhood, if you listen carefully you justmighthear the rhythm of dreams takingshape. Almost every afternoon, dozens of kids stretch their imaginations at the WalltownChildren's Theater.

"It's keeping our minds off of bad things, off of negative things. It gives ussomething constructive to do," says one student.

Joe and Cynthia Henderson opened their theater in the heart of the Walltown neighborhoodjust a few months ago.

Cynthia Henderson is a former Alvin Ailey dancer. She and her husband Joe openedthis dance and drama studio in hopesof reaching kids from all walks of life. Parents pay on a sliding scale dependingon what the family can afford.

"When I look at the guys, I know they're loving it and they can't believethey're here." says Cynthia Henderson.

"I think that was one of the challenges for us was to put it in this neighborhood and then bring everyone else from Durham into this neighborhood," says Joe Henderson.

The classics are a staple at this studio. For these teens, Shakespeare rules.

""It's a great place if you've had a bad day at school to get out all youranger and express yourself," says Max Rose.

"I like coming here. [They] may be strict, but it's a good environment," says anotherstudent.

When people see kids coming in and doing things you didn't expect them todo, that wins over any heart," says Joe Henderson.

The Walltown Children's Theater is on Berkley Avenue just off of Guess Road. An openhouse is scheduled for May 19th at2 p.m.


Julia Lewis, Reporter
Don Ingle, Photographer
Julian King, Web Editor

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