Press Release

Release Date: April 11, 2019
Contact: Lisa A. Baehre/ Executive Director
Sandler Center Foundation
757.385.0227 |

Another Stellar Year for the SCF’s Education Program

~Over 14,000 students served at the Sandler Center | Thousands more in Outreaches~

April 11th, 2019- Virginia Beach
The Sandler Center Foundation’s Education Program just wrapped up another stellar year, serving 20,360 students through its live performance matinees at the Sandler Center during the academic year and through its exhibit at the NAS Oceana Air Show STEM Lab.  Of the students who attended Education Program matinees, 11,599 students (81%) were able to participate due to full funding provided by the Sandler Center Foundation through the generosity of its donors and education partners. This year’s title sponsor was Consumer Real Estate Group LLC. Grants to support the Education Program were received from the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts, The Helen G. Gifford Foundation, Chesapeake Fine Arts Commission, Walmart Community grants, and Tidewater Children’s Foundation. Over the past nine years, the Education Program has served over 75,000 total students.

From Professor Wow’s Fun-Believable Science Show to The Ugly Duckling, the 2018/19 matinee season was packed with fourteen performances at the Sandler Center. An additional 10 on-the-road performances with Richmond Ballet, the State Ballet of Virginia, were taken to Title I schools in all seven Hampton Roads cities. In September 2018, the Foundation participated in the NAS Oceana Air Show as part of the STEM Lab. Students were introduced to the technology and science side of the arts through an informative theatrical lighting exhibit. Together, these opportunities furthered the Sandler Center Foundation’s mission to educate, inspire and enrich lives.

The Sandler Center Foundation’s Education Program offers unique cultural and educational experiences to teachers, students and homeschool families. The matinee performances provide many students with their first experience in a world-class performing arts venue, while also providing a fun learning experience to support and enhance the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs).

Founded in 2005, the Sandler Center Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to educate, inspire, enrich and build our community, strengthen local arts organizations, and instill an appreciation of the arts in future generations through the underwriting of world-class performances at the Sandler Center.  The Foundation serves the community through its three pillars: education, community outreach programs and performance underwriting.

In addition to its Education Program, the Foundation hosts the local military, educators, first responders and their families to a free Sandler Center resident company performance through their Local Heroes Program.  Partnerships with the Virginia Arts Festival and Armed Services Arts Partnership also provide performing arts opportunities to educate, inspire and enrich our community. More can be found about membership and all these programs at