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Image of Rick Sperling

© Gilles Perrin http://www.gilles-perrin.com/

Rick Sperling
Founder and CEO, Mosaic Youth Theater

We are not a theater in a building; we are a theater company. We’ve been around for twenty years. It’s really youth development through the arts.

When I started going into these schools through this professional theater and seeing all the kids … the talent was incredible, and the hunger. We thought we were doing a nice program for these kids. Artistically it blew us all away. And that’s really where the idea for Mosaic was born.

I think a lot of people say this about Detroit—you can accomplish more, you can have a greater impact in Detroit than a lot of other places. In New York, or Chicago, or L.A., it takes years and years just to make a dent, just to be there. In Detroit the opportunities are so strong. So I often wonder whether I could have done Mosaic somewhere else. There’s something unique about doing it in Detroit.

There’s a lot of talk right now in the education world about twenty-first-century skills that our kids have to learn. They’re innovation skills; there’s the four Cs: creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking. If you take those four things, nothing does all four of them better than the arts.

From June 15, 2012, interview