FC Spring 2024

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Connecting on Campus!

Connecting on Campus!

Growing the Campus Initiative. You Can Help!

Fellowship for Performing Arts brought its newest play, C.S. Lewis On Stage: Further Up & Further In, to two major campuses in February — the University of Florida and the University of Virginia.

Each campus production marks the culmination of months of planning and coordination that begins when we connect with a student organization that partners with us to produce our show in a campus theatre. These performances marked the 20th and 21st campuses we’ve visited with a live show. 

Now, we want to do more. And you can help!

“The Campus Initiative is perhaps the most challenging and most exciting thing we do,” said FPA’s Founder and Artistic Director Max McLean. “It begins with the visionary generosity of our supporters, who subsidize deeply discounted student tickets for our works right in the midst of student and campus life. But the next vital step is to find that on-campus partner organization to work with us.” 

That’s where University Coordinator Erin Reed comes in.

“I’m continually reaching out to Christian organizations on campus,” Erin said. “However, if we have a connection with them through our FPA family, it truly speeds the process.”

In 2024-25, our goal is to significantly increase the number of campus productions. Do you have a connection at your alma mater or with a student group at a nearby college or university? We encourage you to reach out to Erin at [email protected] and let us know.

One thing we know right now is that the Campus Initiative is making a difference.

“The students are the best at describing the Initiative’s impact,” Erin said. “Here are just three highlights from those who attended or helped us come to their campus.” 

Brown University — C.S. Lewis On Stage: The Most Reluctant Convert drew a full house of 400 to experience Lewis’ journey from atheism to faith. “Nothing like this had ever happened at Brown!” said Elizabeth Yeh, a senior who helped organize FPA’s production. “An event with full-frontal nudity would be more common on campus than a play about conversion to Christianity.”

UC Berkeley — The birthplace of the free speech movement — provided a surprise welcome for Christian worldview theatre. A beautiful, on-campus, 1,500-seat venue was filled to the corners with students, faculty, staff and folks from the community. 

“A student told us he felt as if Lewis was reading his personal journal entries. The questions were the same. The skepticism was the same. And just like the man in the play, this young man took ‘the leap of faith’ to believe in Jesus”

GOT A CAMPUS CONTACT? Share it with us!

It starts with an introduction! We need student organizations to partner with us on campuses. Do you have a contact at your alma mater or a school nearby? Connect them with FPA’s University Coordinator Erin Reed.

“Tonight was absolutely amazing,” one of our student leaders said. “I know that all of us were like, OK, are we going to even fill this auditorium halfway? And then seeing the ticket sales come in and the numbers. It just speaks to the need and the desire among students.”

University of Kentucky — Finally, following a completely full production of Further Up & Further In at Kentucky, a young skeptic in attendance said it felt as if Lewis was reading his personal journal entries in the show: the questions were the same, the skepticism was the same, the fervor and want for truth was the same. Then he told us he took ‘the leap’ during our performance – to believe in Jesus as his Lord and Savior.

The Campus Initiative is only possible through the generosity of our Fellowship Circle of supporters. We would love to partner with you or someone you know to bring a show to your alma mater or a campus near you. As mentioned, contact Erin Reed at [email protected] for more information or visit our Campus Initiative page on FPAtheatre.com.

FPA’s audience at UC, Berkeley (left). Post-show discussion at University of Kentucky (right).
Students react to Further Up & Further In

“It was a really great experience, and I would love for more productions like this
to come.”

“The whole show was phenomenal. I would give it a 10 out of 10. Everything felt like I was seeing C.S. Lewis in person. The intro was a big grab, the whole boom, showing the whole universe.” 

“I know that our campus ministry had quite a few non-believers, a lot of skeptics in the front row watching all this. …The play itself also encourages questions I didn’t even think about before. It was really great.”

“It felt really real. There were times where I was in tears…I’d see it again and again and again. It’s one of a kind. I have never seen anything like it before and, honestly, I wish I could sit down with this dude and just like talk to him. I think a lot of people should see this play because it was amazing.”

“It was really beautiful and touched me personally.”

“As a Christian, it made me actually tear up inside because it showed how beautiful Christ can be.” 

“It brings more reality to Christianity and what we are taught and what we believe. I think that sometimes it does feel far away, and it feels distant. …Throughout the whole play he seems to be bringing it to like this is happening now, this is reality now. This isn’t just something that happened 2000 years ago. It is happening now.”

“I really loved the part of the play that talked about the joy that we were born knowing and the beauty that we cannot reach. It’s that reminder that we are living in a fallen world and that we are striving for something that is so much bigger than us.”

“This is like the Christian event of the century.” 

“It was great to see so many college students that I’ve seen around campus all come together and witness this wonderful production.” 

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