New Moon Theater is unique, bringing both professional theater and opera to young audiences in schools and public venues throughout the region. Our interactive style allows children to be part of our performance, and residences allow us to share our passion for the performing arts at a deeper level with students.

Executive Director Julie Kurzava and Co-Founder Tom Zielinski both have extensive professional credits, advanced degrees in performance and are certified through the Teaching Artist Institute in drama and opera.  Our teaching adds depth to our nine assembly programs, focusing on opera, world wide folk tales and Maryland history.

New Moon Theater can provide one hour workshops for groups (approx 25 students) in conjunction with an assembly program. 

The workshop is to introduce the art form (drama or opera) to members of the audience, and allow them to have a hands on experience of creating a character or singing a story.  Workshops can precede or follow a performance.

Workshop fee: $100 per session.




Artists in Residence
Residencies typically begin with an assembly program where the artists demonstrate the art form and engage student interest.

Opera is Singing a Story – A Big Song 
By demystifying opera and demonstrating that opera is, at its core, simply singing the story, (a big song), students actively learn and demonstrate the basic music principles needed to create an opera.   

As a culminating event, students sing a story that they’ve adapted from their classroom literature.

Grade Level: 3–8
Duration: 4–5 sessions per class (approx 25 students)
Fee: $75 per session (45-50 minutes)
Artist: Tom Zielinski

Exploring Character Through Drama
The residency focuses on building inference and empathy by applying drama skills to literature. Students learn how actors create characters and relationships, and how conflict and resolution impact a story. By assuming another character’s point of view, students bring the stories to life, drawing inferences about the characters and situations not expressly stated in 
the text.

The residency culminates in students using acting tools and skills to infer, improvise, write and perform scenes extending characters from their classroom literature.

Grade Level: 2-8
Duration: 4-5 sessions per class (approx 25 students)
Fee: $75 per session (45-50 minutes)
Artist: Julie Kurzava

Space Requirements:  Large classroom with desks moved to create space for movement. 
Materials Needed:  Easel, chart paper & markers.

Funding Opportunities
Because New Moon Theater is on the Maryland State Arts Council’s roster of Artist-in-Residence, you can request MSAC funding for a full residency by up to $30 per classroom session, plus half of the kickoff assembly and travel costs. To apply for funding, schools must submit their application for each school year by May of the previous year. You can find more information at the MSAC website  Grant applications must be coordinated through New Moon Theater, so please contact Julie Kurzava at New Moon Theater for assistance.

After School Classes
New Moon Theater offers Creative Drama in 6–10 week sessions for students in grades 1–5.

The purpose of the class is to help students develop acting tools and skills, focusing on how actors use movement, voice and imagination to create characters. We will also practice ensemble skills such as communication and cooperation. The students will share what they’ve learned in a short performance of scenes immediately following the final class.

New Moon Theater staff are currently offering classes after school at Hillcrest and Westchester Elementary Schools in Catonsville, Baltimore County.

For more information on these programs, please contact New Moon Theater at 410-719-8603 or

Residencies & Workshops