Performing Arts Education

Fostering creative growth

Auburn Public Theater partners with Auburn Public Schools & community centers to provide free performing arts classes for all ages in grades K-12. We also offer ongoing, dynamic and affordable classes & summer camps right here at the theater in film, theater & music. Our youth programs challenge and educate our community’s children and foster creative growth through shared artistic experiences. Tuition assistance and full scholarships available!

Vision & Mission

Our classes offer an accessible, safe and inclusive space that fosters talented and motivated students to do their best and pursue their dreams. We value diversity and respect each community member and their contributions equally. Click HERE to read more about our Vision & Mission for all of our education programs.

Youth Classes

Auburn Public Theater Exchange Street Records

Exchange Street Records

Cancelled due to Covid-19 Closure.

Write, Collaborate, & Perform in a Band!

Scholarships are available!

Tuesdays January 14th – May 12th 5:30pm-7pm (no class February 18, March 17, or April 7) Sunday Showcase May 17th 4-6pm

Grades 7-12

Jim Van Arsdale (view Bio)


The Exchange Street Records (ESR) program offers an opportunity for young people to gain the skills needed to explore the world of popular music. Whether a student is interested in playing guitar, drums, bass, ukulele, keyboards or just sing, they will learn today’s favorite songs both solo and with a group. Students also study successful techniques in the areas of improvisation, stage presence and live sound. Songwriting techniques and song structure, with the goal of composing their own songs for performance and future recording, will be covered. The semester will conclude with a live performance event and class pot luck at Auburn Public Theater. Following completion, participants will also be invited to showcase their new skills in the Perform 4 Purpose concert series. ESR students get to perform live every week at APT’s Open Mic, and they get FREE admission for themselves & a guardian at any music event produced by APT. Select ESR students & alumni also have the opportunity to open for nationally touring professional acts at APT.

Summer Camps

Auburn Public Theater offers summer day camps in Musical Theater, Reel Filmmaking and Exchange Street Records.

To register for classes & camps, please fill out the registration form & mail or drop it off at Auburn Public Theater 8 Exchange Street. Or call 315-253-6669 to register during box office hours. Download scholarship form for need-based tuition assistance HERE.

Click HERE for class rules & policies for classes and camps (note: not all of these rules are applicable to free programming offered through public schools & community centers).

Auburn Public Theater Summer Camp

Free Youth Programs

We are proud to partner with Auburn Public Schools & community centers to provide free arts programs for all ages in grades K-12. These programs include a “music club” version of our Exchange Street Records class, music video production, yoga, free film screenings at APT & more. APT currently runs free programs in partnership with Booker T. Washington Community Center, Auburn High School, Auburn Junior High School, Casey Park Elementary, Seward Elementary and Genesee Elementary.


APT educational programs are made possible through the generous support of:

Cayuga Community Fund an affiliate fund of the Central NY Community Foundation; Marie C. Bean Harris and Evelyn B. & Emery S. Osborn Funds (administered by the Central NY Community Foundation). The Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation, The John Ben Snow Foundation, The Kiwanis Club of Auburn, The Nelson B. Delavan Foundation, Lyons National Bank, J.M. McDonald Foundation, Inc., The Mimi Fishman Foundation, M&T Bank, NYSCA, The Guido and Ellen Palma Foundation, SKARTS Skaneateles Area Arts Council, The United Way, and Wegmans.


Kids cinema at Auburn Public Theater
Kids cinema at Auburn Public Theater
Auburn Public Theater receiving Lyons Check
Kids in the studio at Auburn Public Theater