Tucked away on Aversboro Road in Garner is Spiritual Twist Productions, a Christian youth theater that is one of the best kept secrets in the Triangle. Beginning their sixth season in their Garner location, STP provides year-round theater opportunities for students of all ages, producing ten major musicals a year. Their mission is to produce real musical theater with a spiritual twist, speaking truth and showing hope, every time their young actors and actresses hit the stage.
Spiritual Twist Productions began as a summer children’s theater workshop in 1987 in Fuquay Varina. Natalie Snapp, the ministry’s founder, responded to a need in the community – parents who wanted their children to experience theater in a Christian context that would bring glory and honor to God. She began writing her own material that provided real theater with a spiritual twist, offering students the opportunity to grow in their faith and share the gospel on stage. Students have loved bringing her fairytales, classic literary stories and Bible accounts to life.
What began as a small summer ministry blossomed into year-round classes that grew little by little every year. Classes rehearsed in spaces in Fuquay, and later moved to Angier. Productions were hosted by local churches, and audiences traveled to wherever the next performance might be. After almost 25 years, Spiritual Twist Productions was blessed to find their permanent home in the former Victory Church building on Aversboro Road and received its 501 (c) 3 non-profit status shortly thereafter.
Currently, Spiritual Twist Productions is a hub of activity, with over 200 students learning each week in eight classes that serve ages 4-18. Classes begin in September each year, and every class produces a major musical in the spring. There is a class for young actors (ages 4-7), homeschool classes, afterschool classes and classes in the evenings for teens. Adults can revisit their high school production days in Spiritual Twist’s unique adult class that begins each January and produces a show each June.
One of the highlights of the ministry is the leadership opportunities that it affords to teens. Each class is staffed with TTAs (theater teaching assistants) who mentor younger students, praying with them and teaching skills that are valuable both on and off stage. This past season one of the plays that was produced, Never After, was written by high school students who have grown up in the program. This summer, STP is pleased to present the premiere production of Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, another musical written by STP graduates.
Directors are carefully chosen for their skills in theater, their love for students and their faith in Jesus Christ. Directors, assistant directors, and TTAs are trained on site, and there is a 1:6 volunteer to student ratio for younger classes. Students receive training in acting, voice, and dance each week, and there is a gospel-centered devotion given at the beginning of each class. Families are encouraged to volunteer on their child’s production, serving in one of the many production areas, and joining the strong community of faith that is another ministry highlight.
Registration is currently open for theater classes for the STP 2019-2020 season. In addition to theater classes, there are opportunities to take art and design, worship in motion, tap and piano. Be sure to check out their summer camp opportunities for ages 7-12! Each week of camp features creative learning experiences in a variety of areas including dance, mini-productions, and even storytelling!
Spiritual Twist Productions…speaking truth, sharing hope, creating community!!