2016 Life Stories participants
“The Life Stories program puts The Theatre Lab a step ahead of other theatre organizations in terms of social responsibility toward the community.”
Gregg Henry, Artistic Director, The Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival


The Children's Inn at the National Institutes of Health

Since 2011 The Theatre Lab has offered a unique Life Stories® program at the Children's Inn at NIH, for families that have often traveled long distances to live together while their children receive medical treatments, providing a fun, interactive, creative outlet for parents and children to “play” together in a time of need. Our improvisational workshops (theater games, storytelling, etc.) can be attended as a one-time activity or a series. The workshops reconnect children with past achievements and, through visualization, help them project into a hopeful future where they are more than simply their diagnosis. The program was an immediate success with both families and staff, and The Theatre Lab now offers monthly workshops.


“Theatre Lab night is one of our families’ favorite activities. It gives parents and their children the opportunity to have fun and act silly together. Everyone ends up laughing a lot, which relieves all the stresses of the day."

- Ronny W. Kempenich, Education Program Coordinator, Children’s Inn

Camp Mariposa

The Theatre Lab partners with The National Center for Children and Families and Camp Mariposa to provide a Life Stories program supporting children who are impacted by substance abuse in their families.  Life Stories participants at Camp Mariposa experience theatre as a means to release stress and tension through laughter, play, and teamwork.   They also work on social, developmental, communication, and coping skills to help break the cycle of intergenerational addiction.

Greentree Shelter for Women

The Theatre Lab partners with Greentree Shelter for Women through the National Center for Children and Families to provide an acting and improvisation workshop twice a month to families living in temporary housing.  The workshop allows both parents and children to use improvisation to help nurture social and developmental skills as well as increase self-confidence. The program also provides a release of energy and anxiety to families by cultivating a creative outlet through imaginary play in a fun and safe environment.