North Texas Performing Arts Launches North Texas First Deaf Theatre, Appoints Director

The North Texas Performing Arts (NTPA) has launched the NTPA Deaf Theatre, the first in North Texas and one of the first of its kind nationally. It has appointed Daymond Sands as the Deaf Theatre’s new Program Director.

Sands will produce the Deaf Theatre’s first major production, “It’s a Wonderful Life,” which hits the stage in November. He’s currently directing a cast of 22 actors in the adaptation of the classic story, according to a news release.

Award-winning arts educator and mentor

Daymond Sands [Photo: NTPA]

Sands, a Dallas native who first took the stage at age five, recently received the Art Centre of Plano’s “Arts Educator Award” for his work as a deaf actor, sign singer, director, and mentor. Sands has worked as a professional performer and ASL consultant in theater since 2016.

“I appreciate the Arts Educator recognition, and look forward to propelling this program to greater heights,” Sands said in a statement. “I’m thankful to NTPA for creating the Deaf Theatre and bringing this opportunity to deaf performers across North Texas.”

NTPA “Accessible Theatre” program

The NTPA Deaf Theatre is part of the organization’s Accessible Theatre program. It aims to promote equal access to theater for deaf and hard-of-hearing youth while encouraging diversity and inclusiveness, the organization said. 

In addition, every NTPA Deaf Theatre Board Member has to be a member of the Deaf community, either by being Deaf themselves or by being a parent of a Deaf child.

“We’re excited about Daymond’s leadership as we expand this program’s impact,” NTPA CEO Darrell Rodenbaugh said. “This builds on our vision that every child should have the opportunity to take the stage.”

The nonprofit NTPA aims to develop the character of youth through performing arts education and family entertainment. Founded as Plano Children’s Theatre three decades ago, NTPA has grown to become the largest youth theatre organization in the country, the nonprofit says.

Headquartered at the Willow Bend Center of the Arts in Plano, NTPA now has spaces in Fairview, Frisco, and Dallas.

Every year, NTPA provides opportunities to over 11,000 students ages 3 to 18 through its “Ten Characters” leadership development program. Using the power of theatre, dance, music, voice, film, and television, NTPA’s professional artistic staff works to spark a passion for the performing arts in young people while helping them become better citizens.

“It’s a Wonderful Life” will run November 17-19 in the Egelston-Akers Blackbox Theatre at the Willow Bend Center of the Arts in Plano. Tickets are $12 in advance, $14 starting November 13.

Go here for tickets or more information.

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