Board of Directors

Dear Friends,

It has now been 40 years since I joined the Theatre Within Workshop and 57 years since the workshop was founded by my great teacher, Alec Rubin.

The workshop changed my life in so many ways: It was where I learned to cry, no small thing for a young man. It was where I learned that my real voice is my creative voice, a vital lesson. And it was where I learned, encouraged by Alec and inspired deeply by John Lennon (who lived just down the street from our studio), to take the risk of fully expressing myself.

From the very start, Theatre Within has been about nourishing consciousness and creativity. The essential task of the artist is to become more conscious — Carl Jung called this process “individuation” — and to share the journey along the way. The artist’s journey then is one of continual self-discovery and sharing. We become more conscious through meditation, remembering our dreams, and sharing our felt experience as we are naturally inspired to — in written or spoken word, music, movement, and the visuals arts.

Since 2014, our main focus has been providing ongoing, free workshops — in songwriting, art, meditation and more — for those whose lives have been impacted by cancer at Gilda’s Club, NYC. In 2018, Theatre Within provided over 50 free workshops for the New York-metro cancer community, with more planned for the current year.

Our most popular program, the John Lennon Real Love Project, is a songwriting workshop that uses Lennon’s music and message to inspire children who have lost a parent to cancer and adult cancer survivors to compose their own songs and sing their truth.  In the fall of 2019, contingent on funding, we will offer the John Lennon Real Love Project to public schools in the tri-state area at no cost.

Meanwhile, our Annual John Lennon Tribute charity concert, now in its 39th year, continues to be a vitally important New York cultural event, attracting top artists and fans from around the world. Proceeds from the Tribute and our other shows, such as last year’s 75th Birthday Tributes for George Harrison and Joni Mitchell, help support our creative, life-affirming mission.

With your heartfelt support, we will continue to have a powerful positive impact!

Onward, with love,

Joe Raiola
Winter 2019

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