Introducing Children’s Theatre Company’s New Howard Fellow: Raegan Henderson
Children’s Theatre Company’s (CTC) new Howard University Arts Administration Fellow, Raegan Henderson, expounded on her view of theatre’s role in creating inclusive spaces as we got to know her before the start of her fellowship at CTC in mid-August. While talking to Raegan, it became clear that she has abundant experience both on and off the stage. She recalled that, when she was three years old, her parents slept through a performance of The Lion King while she watched raptly, mesmerized by the spectacle onstage. The experience stayed with her, inspiring her to take part in all aspects of her high school’s and college’s theatre programs. She’s embraced multiple facets of theatre, serving as everything from lead actress to stage manager, lighting designer to event planner.
"Theatre has been, and always will be, a safe, limitless, expressive space for people to create."
Raegan comes to CTC after four years at Howard University, a place she refers to as home. Howard, located in Washington, D.C., is one of the nation’s top historically black universities, and its theatre department is internationally acclaimed. Raegan views the Howard community as a supportive family. “I frequently called the staff and faculty my aunties and uncles,” she enthused. “I still keep in touch with many of the staff that worked on campus.” Howard and CTC have an ongoing partnership, and each year the university’s Theatre Arts Administration Department hand picks a promising graduate to come to Minneapolis for a yearlong fellowship. Raegan was confident that she wanted to participate in a fellowship program after graduating. She reflected, “With my own personal interest in arts education for youth art, I knew CTC would be an amazing place for me to grow and learn.”
When asked about the area of theatre administration she’s most drawn to, Raegan is quick to mention her enthusiasm for fundraising and development. She worked in the grants department of the D.C. Commission on Arts and Humanities during her time at Howard and aspires to one day start her own nonprofit, so she’s looking forward to learning how CTC’s development department works. She remarked, “Development and fundraising are at the core of any good organization, and I really hope to learn from CTC since they've been so successful!”
As a Howard Fellow, she’ll have the chance to get hands-on experience in all areas of professional theatre arts administration, and she’s excited to see how she can contribute. Raegan also hopes that her time at CTC will help her to further focus her areas of interest. “I think my biggest challenge at this point is wanting to do too much,” she stated. “I'm having trouble limiting myself, but I hope with time, my interests will become more focused.”
A native of southern California, Raegan is new to the Twin Cities area and is both eager to explore the area’s culture and a little nervous to experience her first Minnesota winter. At CTC, we’re looking forward to working alongside her throughout the year as she deepens her understanding of arts administration and youth theatre—and maybe below-zero wind chills.