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With classes for every age group plus educational events for the whole family to enjoy, ArtPlay aims to connect our community with the arts like never before. Check out our classes, workshops and performances, and start creating today!

Calendar of Events

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ArtPlay, the education and outreach initiative of UAB’s Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center, endeavors to educate, inspire, and nurture creative growth and self-expression in people of all ages by providing innovative arts education programming in a collaborative and holistic environment.


Meet Our Musical Theatre Camp Director, Valerie Lemmons!

Valerie Lemmons has been around Birmingham theatre for years.  Chances are, if you’ve been involved in local theatre (or visited Dollywood in the 90s), you know that Valerie is one of the most effervescent and talented ladies in town.  If you’ve heard of a triple threat, meet one who is a quadruple.  Valerie isn’t just a dynamo on stage, she’s a wonderful teaching artist.  As Minor High Schools theatre instructor, Valerie inspires and dedicates her energy daily to the hope of future actors.  We are excited that she will be leading us in all three of our musical theatre camps this summer.  Let’s see what Valerie had to say when we sat down with her!

How did you develop a love for performing?

When I was four,  I saw the TN Children’s Dance Foundation perform.  I told my Mom I wanted to do that.  I went down to the front of the stage and spoke to Dr. Floyd, the Director.  She told me I would have to be five before I could take classes and that I should practice hopping up and down my driveway on one foot.  She probably had no idea my drive way was a steep incline, but I practiced everyday.  I began dancing when I was five and I’ve loved performing ever since!

What do you love about live theatre?

I love that you mess up!  The most joyous experience is that it’s real people in real time.  The flaws are what make it human.  The give and take between the actors and the audience is a beautiful thing.

What is special about the ArtPlay camp experience?

I love the ArtPlay experience because we are about doing quality work in a loving environment.  The kids are going to learn solid technique.  We have FUN!

What are you most excited about this summer?

I simply cannot wait for my favorite show of all time….HAIRSPRAY!!



UAB’s Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center proudly unveils ArtPlay, a new arts education and outreach initiative for our community.

Upcoming Events

  • Register for Fall 2014 Classes Today!

    17 Jun 14 // Birmingham, AL 35205

    Register today for our fall semester! We have many fantastic new offerings and your ArtPlay favorites available for registration now. Classes for all ages and interests.

  • Sonic Dreams, Earfilms – "Creating the Story", discussion

    21 Aug 14 // Birmingham, AL 35205

    Join us for this Meet the Artist Experience like non-other.

    What is an EarFilm?

    An EarFilm is a purely audio film for the ears and the imagination. We fuse live story-telling, 3D sound and a cinematic musical score to create an experience that truly unlocks the listener’s imagination. EarFilms breathes new life into the tradition of storytelling, turning it into a hyper-real experience.

    “Filmmakers are only ever projecting their own imaginations. EarFilms allows the viewer to use their own. Yes, the attendees are actually blindfolded as they experience cinematic storytelling with 3D sound to create a minds-eye movie all of their own.”- Source Magazine

  • Auditions for ArtPlay's "Make it Happen" Performing Ensemble

    23 Aug 14 // Birmingham, AL 35205


    Through a partnership with “Make it Happen” Theatre Company, the ASC’s ArtPlay invites high school students to audition for this performance-based program in which students will attend weekly theatre classes and rehearsals that will culminate in the performance celebrating Black History Month. This performance will be researched, written, and performed by the student participants as part of the ArtPlay Presents series. Students selected for the ensemble will also participate in the Martin Hames Arts Mentoring Program (above). The program requires a year-long commitment to all rehearsals, performances, and activities.   Call 205-975-4769 for more information.

  • The Nile Project Preview – Troubled Waters, discussion

    12 Sep 14 // Birmingham, AL 35205

    The Nile Project Preview

    Friday, September 12

    Noon – Lower Lobby of ASC

    Troubled Waters

    Featuring Shaun A. Crawford, PhD, CIH, UAB School of Public Health, Department of Environmental Health Sciences

    In anticipation of the upcoming Nile Project residency, Dr. Shaun Crawford leads us in a discussion on how the study of our most precious natural resource holds the power to ensure the future of generations to come.

    Shaun Crawford, PhD, CIH, is experienced in conducting environmental health and industrial hygiene services for business, industry, government and communities since 1990. He currently holds a faculty position in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He has also been on faculty in the Urban Environmental Studies curriculum at Birmingham-Southern College, as well as in the Environmental Management graduate program at Samford University. His current research focus includes exposure modeling, the built environment, respiratory protection, and healthy and sustainable communities.