Stories 4 Strength brings education, healing and play through theater, music and art to underserved populations of children and teenagers around the world. After working in Madagascar with at risk youth, and collaborating with UNICEF to promote health education through theater, founder Annie Worden was inspired to create a global organization that brings free arts programming to children in hospitals, foster care, homeless shelters and refugee camps. At Stories 4 Strength, we believe creative expression through art is deeply important to a child's growth. Every child, no matter their circumstances, deserves access to arts education that unlocks their creative potential. We teach story creation, songwriting, and performance techniques to build confidence, resilience and community, giving children power through the value of their own voices.
MEET OUR TEAM
Annie Worden (Founder, Artistic Director) is an actor, puppeteer and teacher from California. She spent four years working as the education/outreach coordinator for Zara Aina, an NGO that does theater with underpriviledged children in Madagascar. She's taught at the Hunts Point Alliance for Children in New York, The 52nd Street Project, and worked with Mighty Shero Productions bringing theater and storytelling to incarcerated women. She also developed a program to bring after school art classes to homeless shelters in Brooklyn and Queens. She recieved an MFA from Brown University/Trinity Rep. www.annieworden.com
Matt Citron (Company Manager, Music Director) is an actor, musician and teacher. He has taught music and theater at The 52nd Street Project, Zara Aina, Peace Child, Marin Country Day School, and The Bank Street School. As an actor and music director he has worked at Lincoln Center, The Public Theater, Playwright's Horizons, New York Theater Workshop, The Williamstown Theater Festival, and many others. His music has been heard on MTV, The CW, Bravo, TruTV, the Olympics 2016, and the Emmy nominated web series Honest Trailers. He received an MFA from NYU's Graduate Acting Program. www.mattcitron.space www.mattcitron.net
Katie Nave Freeman (Director of Developement) supports Stories 4 Strength's external communications and fundraising initiatives. Katie has over ten years of experience in non-profit development, communications, and creative strategy. Driven by her passion for children's rights, education and storytelling, Katie is honored to support Stories 4 Strength's mission to make a difference in the lives of underserved populations of children around the world.
OUR TEACHING ARTISTS
Tristan Cunningham has been teaching circus arts and theater to children for over ten years. She is an experienced theater teaching artist, head of acrobatics and clowning, and director of circus summer camp for companies on the east and west coast. Her passion for teaching comes from her deep love for children and her belief that theater and circus are for everyone. She enjoys seeing her students grow their skills and learn helpful tools they will carry for the rest of their lives. Circus and performing has changed her life and she feels lucky to share this passion with her students. She recently won the 2018 Luminary Award for education from California Shakespeare Theater. www.tristancunningham.com
Cherie Corinne Rice is an educator and actor based in New York City. She is the head of Voice and Speech at the Professional Performing Arts School in NYC and has most recently performed in the Shakespeare Festival St. Louis' production of Romeo and Juliet. Cherie is bets known for her work on the TV comedy Nightcap. She has worked as an actor for The Light Fantastic Theater, performing in prisons, nursing homes and homeless shelters all over the east coast. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Stories 4 Strength. www.cheriecorinnerice.com
Korey Jackson is a native of Maryland, and current resident of the New York City area. He is an actor, director, writer and founding producer of F.A.M. Creative Productions. In addition to his work on stage and screen, he loves bringing the arts to communities who need them most. Whether he is teaching music to 5th graders at P.S. 48 in the Bronx through the Hunts Point Alliance for Children (HPAC), acting in musical plays written by kids in the Hell's Kitchen area with the 52nd Street Project, or performing great plays for our enlisted men and women around the world with Art In The Armed Forces (AITAF), these are the artistic experiences that mean the most to him. He couldn't be more excited to continue this important work with Stories 4 Strength.
Leicester Landon is a theater artist and educator from New Orleans with a strong faith in the restorative power of theater. He has performed professionally in film and on stage regionally and in New York. He also works with children struggling to beat cancer at the What You Give Will Grow organization in New Orleans. He was a member of the Chautauqua Theater Conservatory and received his MFA from Brown University/Trinity Rep.
Christine Stulik is an actor, writer, and musician recently relocated to NYC having spent the past 12 years in Chicago. She was a company member of The Hypocrites, where she acted in 14 productions over 6 years. In NYC, she has worked at HERE Arts Center and the MCC Youth Company. She has acted regionally at A.R.T, Berkeley Rep, and Actors Theatre of Lousiville and is a proud graduate of Northwestern University and The School at Steppenwolf. www.christinestulik.com
Sunny has been a full time faculty member at Friends International in Phnom Penh for over 20 years. In addition to working with the kids at Mith Samlanh, he also regularly hosts a singing competition on Cambodian TV under the alias VJ Color.
Socheat Vouen is a peer mentor at the Angkor Hospital for Children in Siem Reap. She supports children facing difficult health issues at the hospital and educates her community about better hygiene practices. She also loves spicy mango.
Saphon is a full time staff member of the Angkor Hospital for Children in Siem Reap. He helps organize the community outreach for the Capacity Building Team at AHC.