Lakeland News Posting

Cleveland Public Theatre and the Lakeland Women’s Center set the stage for students to perform their way to self-discovery and growth

Posted: May 23, 2016

The Lakeland Women's Center and the Cleveland Public Theatre (CPT) will present a live performance of “Courage to Speak,” Wednesday, June 8, at 7 p.m., in Building H, room H-101. The program is free and open to the public.

“Courage to Speak” is the product of a 12-week hands-on learning experience from nine Lakeland student participants who range in age from 16 to late 40. Under the direction of Sally Groth from the CPT, the students become storytellers of their own lives.

Using theater and writing techniques they learn in the 12-week workshop, students tap into their own raw emotion about the challenges they have overcome and then perform their piece onstage in front of a live audience.

“These are women who have faced, and continue to face, incredible obstacles in their lives and yet are trying to attend school, get a degree and improve their own lives and the lives of their children,” saidGloria Lane, manager of the Lakeland Women’s Center. “It's a great program for many people to see. If you are already a student, you will gain a lot of inspiration to overcome your own obstacles. Or, if you are a woman considering coming back to school, you’ll see how others defy odds.”

Lane added that because the students are trained through the 12 weeks in storytelling and theater, those who enjoy live stage performances should also consider attending.

Lakeland previously held the CPT program for students in 2013 and 2014. In 2015, the Women’s Center presented the concept at a national conference, Student Parent Support Symposium, which is held annually at The Ohio State University. The presentation included Lakeland students giving their stage performance to conference attendees.

“We didn’t realize what a unique program this was until the conference,” said Lane. “Our peers from colleges and universities from coast to coast were not familiar with this kind of thing. They were intrigued and impressed with this rare approach for college students who usually have to focus on research. This is really about telling your story, creative writing and performance.”

A talk-back discussion and reception will follow the performance.

Reservations are appreciated but not required. For more information, call 440.525.7322 or email

By: Jessica Novak, Office of Marketing and Communications

Media Contact:
Kerry Jonke