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Wed-Thu: 11AM-5PM | Fri-Sat: by advance appointment
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Part-time ,
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Teaching Artist, Part-Time

To apply, please send your cover letter and resume to with the position title in the subject line.

Position Summary.

The Teaching Artist (TA) is a mentor and artistic coach who works with justice-involved youth in the creation of original theatre, songs, stories and poetry. The TA reports to the Program Manager and supports the Artistic Lead with implementing creative programming during each session. The TA is responsible for coaching youth (ages 13-18) through the writing and performance process, conducting one-on-one conversations about the story, character development, motivations, and emotions of the piece. The TA will participate in all rehearsals and performances. A successful Teaching Artist will have a performance theater background. They must demonstrate collaborative skills and be a role model for others, especially in stressful situations.

This is a part-time, hourly, position working an average of 8 hours per week at a secure juvenile detention facility. This individual must work successfully with all persons in the organization without regard to ethnicity, religion, age, national origin, physical challenge, sexual orientation, or gender.

Job expectations.


  • Study and develop proficiency in Storycatchers Theatre’s artistic process.
  • Work with participants to help them share and write personal stories; read drafts of all participant stories.
  • Learn choreography, blocking, songs, and other elements of staged readings or productions and be prepared to coach and/or understudy participants in all aspects of performance.
  • Provide participants with individual acting or presentation skills coaching as needed.
  • Support participants onstage; manage onstage entrances and exits as needed.
  • Lead theatre games and rehearsal activities.
  • Attend weekly team meetings.
  • Provide emotional support to participants as needed; model professional rehearsal demeanor; work with other TAs to create and maintain a safe, positive program environment for all participants

Additional expectations:

  • Act as a role model for participants by being on time to program sessions, rehearsal calls, and/or touring calls as determined by specific program needs.
  • Maintain a mature, respectful, and patient demeanor.
  • Maintain working rehearsal space, including participation in setup and breakdown of rehearsal elements.
  • Comply with security and access procedures as outlined by partner facility.
  • Other duties as assigned.

What you’ll need to be a great candidate.

  • Be level-headed, resilient, and patient in the face of challenges and/or volatile situations.
  • Have experience working with and be willing to work within a documented, trauma-informed writing methodology.
  • Have experience teaching in and collaborating with a diverse team.
  • Have characteristics of a motivational, empathic leader.
  • Self-starter comfortable balancing immediate responsibilities and urgent tasks.
  • Be willing to respectfully accept and apply feedback.
  • Able to accommodate a flexible, changing schedule.
  • Have a strong interest in advocating against the societal issues and oppressions prevalent in minority communities and the justice system.
  • Have a strong sense of professional boundaries in relationships with youth participants.
  • Successfully complete a facility-required background check.

Where you’ll work and required availability.

Average of 8 hours per week for in-person programming and assigned off-site prep time.

  • Temporary LockDown Program: Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center, 1100 S Hamilton Ave.

Required in-person hours: Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays 5-6:30p

Why work here.

We believe our staff is the heart and soul of the organization. Our workplace culture is challenging, supportive, collaborative and mission driven. We take a genuine interest in career paths, work-life balance, and welcome contributing ideas from staff at all levels. Working at Storycatchers means working somewhere full of engaging, savvy, diverse people who care deeply about pushing our work forward. If you want to work in a progressive organization, where you can build something meaningful and have fun while doing it, we would love to hear from you.

About Storycatchers Theatre. 

 Storycatchers Theatre guides young people to transform their past experiences into expressive arts-based presentations while developing the courage and vision to become leaders and mentors. By creating support for youth within the criminal justice system, Storycatchers prepares them to change their lives and emerge successfully from court involvement. We dedicate all our resources to meeting the complex needs of adolescents and young adults who have become involved in the justice system. We have worked with young people in the Illinois juvenile justice system since 1990, developing and refining a nationally recognized, award-winning, trauma-informed creative youth development methodology. We conduct year-round residential programs in three separate juvenile justice facilities and offer a post-release performing arts jobs program, Changing Voices, to young people navigating reentry to Chicago.    

We are a collaborative organization that believes in committing to each other and the youth we serve. We implement a uniquely effective arts education model that helps marginalized young people develop the capacity to envision and pursue meaningful futures. We believe in second chances.

Contact Info:
Storycatchers Theatre
Job Type: Permanent
Compensation: This role is paid hourly and assigned offsite prep time is compensated.
Location: Chicago / Near West Side