The Growing Stage-The Children’s Theatre of New Jersey is a non-profit professional performing arts center dedicated to theatre for young audiences. A member theatre of the Association of Actor’s Equity, we provide opportunity for all to learn and grow through participation in the arts.
The mission of The Growing Stage is to nurture the development of the performing arts through education and to create, produce and perform works that engage the entire family
Play, learn, grow!
seek to be a model of excellence in theatre for young audiences and strive to develop new arts initiatives which will enhance the lives of young people.
|treat children as adults; giving them the quality, attention to detail and dedication to our craft that they truly deserve.|
|treat adults as children; in the hope that they can re-appreciate the words “Once upon a time,” and re-evaluate the importance of imagination and the arts in their lives.|
|bring this commitment to our work for all of our audiences, so that together a family can share not a just a moment, but a memory in the theatre.|
The Growing Stage was founded by Executive Director Stephen L. Fredericks in 1982 with a small professional staff, a dedicated corps of volunteers and a dream to bring quality professional theatre to children and their families. Initially, Main Stage productions were performed at the Black River Playhouse and the Williamson School in Chester, New Jersey. As our audience and our reputation for outstanding children’s theatre grew, the company embarked on a journey to create the only performing arts center in the state dedicated solely to young people and their families.
The Growing Stage purchased the Palace Theatre in Netcong in 1995, and this historic venue has become our home. Built in 1919, the Palace was in a desperate state of disrepair when we moved in, and its restoration, involving thousands of hours of contractor and volunteer labor, has become an integral part of our history. In 2012, we celebrated the completion of our final major capital project, the restoration of the Palace’s front façade, capping a $2 million, 17-year renovation effort. The Growing Stage is the only theatre-for-young-audiences company in the state of New Jersey that owns its own facility, and the Palace is listed on the County, State and National Historic Registers.
Today, The Growing Stage enjoys a statewide reputation for creating professional, quality theatre for young audiences. Since our inception, over 500,000 patrons have shared in the wonder of the performing arts both at the Palace Theatre and through our workshops, residencies and programs throughout the state. We have much to celebrate in our 31st Main Stage season, and we look forward to the continued expansion of our artistic and educational offerings.