Theatre of Youth has always been dedicated to providing enriching experiences for the youth of WNY.  While our plays are certainly entertaining, we pride ourselves on performing shows that have underlying themes and messages that are important for all children.  Whether it be highlighting the impact of bullying; demonstrating empathy, awareness, and sharing; questioning ethical dilemmas like plagiarism; or dealing as we will this year with acceptance, diversity, and self-identity; Theatre of Youth provides a safe, responsible, alternative space to explore and practice the fundamental tools of Common Core.  Not only that, we all don’t even realize the great things we are learning because we are having so much fun while we do it! 


    for Grades K-3

October 2019 (sold out )

Based on PETE THE CAT series of books by KIMBERLY and JAMES DEAN. Music by WILL ARONSON.  Book and Lyrics by SARAH HAMMOND. PETE THE CAT was originally commissioned, developed and produced in New York City by TheaterWorksUSA.

The ever cool, guitar-playing Pete the Cat gets caught for disturbing the peace and is sentenced to live with the Biddle family to learn some manners.  However, the groovy blue cat creates distractions for the super organized, second-grader Jimmy Biddle.  When Jimmy draws a blank on a school art project; it turns out Pete is the perfect pal to help him out!  Join Jimmy and Pete as they embark on a wild adventure of artistic inspiration, friendship, and creative confidence.  

Next Gen ELA Standards: K-1R3, K-1R9, K-3SL1, K-3SL4

Themes:  communication, discovery, friendship, responsibility, self-confidence


    for Grades 2-5

December (sold out )

Book by ROBERT KAUZLARIC.  Music and Lyrics by GEORGE HOWE

Nothing brightens the dull days of winter like a troupe of tap-dancing penguins!  Based on the unforgettable classic, Mr. Popper’s Penguins tells the warm-hearted tale of Mr. Popper, a man who dreams of becoming an Antarctic explorer.  But when he receives a gift of a real live penguin, the Antarctic comes to his house and he soon has an entire family of little penguins!   How will he support his new family? Join TOY this holiday season to find out in this exuberant musical treat! 

Next Gen ELA Standards: 2-5SL1, 2-5R2, 2-5SL4

Themes:  family, empathy, responsibility


     for Grades 2-4

(Just a few seats left on select dates! ) January 23, 24, 28,  31 & February 4, 7, 2020

Music, Book & Lyrics by JOAN CUSHING. Based on the book “Miss Nelson is Missing” and “Miss Nelson is Back” by HARRY ALLARD.

Illustrated by JAMES MARSHALL

Spitballs flying across the room, paper airplanes sailing every which way and uncontrollable children send the nice, gentle, long-suffering teacher, Miss Nelson, over the edge.  But the students of Room 207 are in for a surprise when Miss Nelson is suddenly missing and is replaced by Miss Viola Swamp, an awful, super-scary, meanest–substitute-teacher-ever who assigns a horrendous load of homework and wields her ruler like a sword!  In desperation, the students set out to find their beloved Miss Nelson….but will they get her back before it’s too late – for them?! 

Next Gen ELA Standards: 2-4R2, 2-4SL1, 2-4SL4

Themes:  appreciation, mystery, respect for others, team problem-solving


    for Grades 6-9

(Just a few seats left on select dates! )March 11, 13,17,18, 27, & April 1, 2, 3,  2020

Adapted by CHRISTOPHER SERGEL.  From the book by S.E. HINTON.

Produced by special arrangement with DRAMATIC PUBLISHING, Woodstock, Illinois.

The Outsiders is a searing story of real kids in real situations with real consequences seen through the eyes of young Ponyboy.  Territorial battles between the have-it-made rich kids — the Socs — and Ponyboy’s tough, underprivileged "greaser" family and friends are just a part of life.  But even in the midst of urban gang warfare, somehow Ponyboy can't forget a short poem that speaks to their fragile young lives. This heroic story of belonging, friendship, and maintaining hope in the face of struggle is a powerful reminder of what young people encounter every day.

Next Gen ELA Standards: 6-10SL1, 6-10R7, RH2, 3 & 5

Themes:  adversity, friendship, belonging


     for Grades PreK - 1  (Minimum Age Level 4 Years) 

May 6, 7, 8, 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, 28, 29 & June 3, 4, 5, 2020

Adapted by ALLISON GREGORY and STEVEN DIETZ.  Adapted from the book “Go, Dog, Go!” by P.D. EASTMAN.  Published by Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc. Copyright © 1961 by P.D. EASTMAN.  Copyright © renewed 1989 by MARY L. EASTMAN.  All rights reserved.  Music composed by MICHAEL KOERNER.  “Do You Like My Hat?” Lyrics by MICHAEL KOERNER.  Produced by Special Arrangement by Plays For Young Audiences.

Get in gear with GO, DOG, GO! These playful pups delve into life with gusto, creating a visual spectacle for the audience to feast upon.  They drive in cars.  They sing and dance. They climb trees.  They snorkel. They howl at the moon, and even ride a Ferris wheel!   Authors Gregory and Dietz play inside the classic story to explore the buckets of bliss, wonder, longing and discovery.   One and all will enjoy this big little musical world of rollicking doggy fun! 

Next Gen ELA Standards: PKRZ, PK-2R9, PK-2W4, PK-2SL1

Themes: adventure, exploration, wonder, discovery



Getting your group to a TOY performance is as simple as choosing your play, your date and then contacting the box office at:

 Email    or   call (716) 884-4400 ext.304  

For a faster process, please have as much of the following information ready when booking:

  • School name, address and phone number
  • Contact person who will be on the trip, along with their cell phone number and email address
  • Show title and preferred date
  • Grade level attending
  • Approximate number of students
  • Approximate number of adults 
  • Will you need any accommodation for wheelchairs or impairments, etc.?





Buses should arrive at the theatre between 9:20 am and no later than 9:45 am for parking and seating. School performances begin promptly at 10 am.  
If you have a late start from your school, please contact the box office to ask about options.


Our full-scale main stage productions offer a professional theatre experience to your students at an affordable rate of $8 per ticket. As a bonus,for every 20 students attending, you will receive one complimentary seat out of the total attendance. (TOY will calculate this on your order for you)


Groups of less than 25 must pay in full upon booking. For larger groups, invoices will be mailed to the contact person several months prior to their chosen performance. Payment due dates will be stated on the invoice with large payments divided into a deposit and final payment. The non-refundable deposit is required by the stated date in order to secure your reservation.

Payments can be made by check, money order or credit card. To pay by credit card please call (716) 884-4400 ext.304. We will not accept cash for school performances. Your reservation attendance may not be decreased after the deposit due date and no refunds will be given after payment is received. Complete payments must be received prior to attending the performance. Payments should be submitted in the form of a single check, credit card payment or money order. Additional tickets may be purchased based on availability.


PRE-SHOW PACKETS will be available for download for teachers prior to the performance.  These will include show-specific information and theatre-driven activities for students to promote creative discussion before the show.

TALK-BACK WITH THE CAST  Stay seated after the performance for an essential moment of learning - our actors will lead a fun and interactive conversation to give your students the fullest understanding of the play.

WORKBOOK - Workbooks will be provided to take back to the classrooms for additional learning about themes of the play. 


BOCES Arts in Education CoSer: TOY is a recognized program in the BOCES Arts in Education CoSer.  This means your trip to TOY is reimbursable up to your District’s BOCES aid ratio the following year.  In other words, you might grow your fieldtrip budget!  Contact your principal – or have your principal contact your school’s Business Office – to learn how to take advantage of this perk.

ARTS IN EDUCATION BUDGETS: Does your District have an arts in education budget?  If so, a field trip to TOY would qualify!  Again, have your principal connect with your district’s business office to check on this possibility. 

NEXT GENERATION STANDARDS: Every TOY show has curriculum crossovers that touch on ELA common core standards and character education.  But that’s not all; a trip to TOY extends the classroom and provides context and examples to reflect on History, Science, and more!