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Standing on the Edge

Stage Play and SEL Residency

An arts-integrated program designed to create teams of student leaders who are trained in creative facilitation strategies and SEL competencies in order to implement the creation of safe spaces for their fellow students.

Strategies include:

  • Storytelling

  • Role-playing

  • Journal Writing

  • and other proven drama therapy techniques


The objective of this program is to define in-school youth-led spaces

that create a culture of interconnectedness and support “for youth by youth”.

Overall this project creates a space for young people to:

  • Engage in productive, helpful dialogue,

  • Boost their self-confidence,

  • Improve their interpersonal/social skills,

  • Increase their mental and emotional flexibility,

  • Identify their school's critical issues related to a positive culture, mental health, and safe school climates

  • Develop and implement systems to address those critical issues

What people are saying about 

Standing on the Edge

            Navigating high school isn’t easy. Trying to identify with who you are, being “labeled” and interacting with the plethora of other teenagers who are doing the same but are “labeled” differently, is not an easy subject to tackle. Our school decided to bring the play Standing on the Edge to our students as a part of our PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) program in order to help with these issues. Not only did the play help us, we soon realized we were in for a treat! The play tackles subject matter that teens find themselves dealing with daily and gives a "jumping off" point for conversations between them and the adults who care for them. Adults and teenagers alike are able to identify with the characters on the stage, creating a comfort level to open up about the troublesome teenage years. Audience members, especially teenagers, connect with the characters, seeing themselves on the stage as Bookworm, Insecure, Aimless, Artsy or Jock; sometimes pieces of each.
          As a high school principal, I hear the struggles of my students every day as I try to convince them of their strength to make it through their high school years; what to many students are the hardest four years of their young lives. My students now know they aren’t alone and they will survive, thanks to Ayesis Clay’s production of Standing on the Edge. Every high school OWES it to their students to bring this production to their school. You, your staff and parents cannot do it alone; give your students an opportunity to become comfortable in their own skin and find hope on the stage through Standing on the Edge.

--Rebecca Castle 
Assistant Principal
Prince George’s County Public Schools




            In order for theatre to be truly impactful, it must be relevant! So many times students are dragged to theatrical venues to experience dramas that they can’t relate to. Standing On The Edge was quite the opposite experience. Through a clever use of words and movement, the playwright gives birth to five salient voices that truthfully reveal the strengths and struggles associated with student life. The ultimate goal of a drama is to draw its viewer in and take them on an uninterrupted emotional journey. I believe that not only did my students experience an emotional journey but they also saw a reflection of themselves on that journey. We, as educators and parents, look to nurture and engage the whole child; this work of art is an essential text that easily compliments any high school curriculum and helps us begin conversations that are very much needed.

               The arts have the power to speak to our youth and capture their immediate attention. Standing On The Edge speaks volumes!

--Bridgit Artis

Theatre Teacher 

Benjamin D. Foulois Creative and Performing Arts Academy (K-8)


     My students were completely engaged with this play! From the Hip Hop music and the choreography to the funny moments between the characters and the poignant words spoken, this play (Standing on the Edge) had their complete attention! The talkback after the play really opened up some conversations that NEED to continue in the classroom and beyond. Thanks cast and crew for a great show! 

--Larry Clay
Dean of Students
Thomas Johnson Middle School

To Book a call to discuss how Standing on the Edge can help your school or organization contact
Ayesis Clay
or use the button below to schedule a chat!

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