Our Why

Because every child deserves arts experiences

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Remember your school arts field trip?

In Arizona, schools increasingly do not have funds for educational arts field trips, and this is especially the case for Title 1 schools in low-income communities. Act One was founded in 2011 to provide school children from lower-income families in Maricopa and Pima counties the opportunity to experience arts performances and exhibitions through field trips to professional theaters and museums.

Mission & Vision

Act One provides meaningful arts experiences that enhance the academic and creative potential of children and families in Arizona. We envision a time when all Arizonans acknowledge the value of creative arts experiences as a significant component of educational advancement and personal well-being.

What We Do

Act One makes the arts accessible to more than 530,000 children and families in Arizona each year through field trips for K-12 students from Title 1 schools and the Culture Pass.

How and Why Act One was Founded

Act One was founded in 2011 by Russ and Mac Perlich in response to the lack of arts access in Arizona schools. Although many theater companies offered student matinees, low-income schools could not afford the tickets. And even when ticket prices were reduced, many schools didn’t have budgets to cover the transportation. The solution became Act One’s flagship venture: the Act One Field Trip Program.

Our History

Act One: Partner, Game-changer, Equalizer

“This is who we are. This is what we do. This is why it matters.” The Act One Field Trip Program is a system and a solution for narrowing an opportunity gap that denies students from low-income families equal access to educational arts experiences. In strategic focus, program implementation and scale, there is nothing else like it in Arizona, perhaps in the country. Find out more about Act One, its programs and why arts field trips can make a difference in students’ lives.

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Our Board

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Our Staff

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Our Supporters

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Support a Child

Your monthly donation to Act One lets children experience the wonder of the arts. Just $20 per month helps us bring a classroom on an arts field trip.

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Want to experience the arts?

Check out our field trip program for Title 1 schools and learn about how you can use a Culture Pass.

Field Trips Culture Pass


Students attended Act One field trips

More than 43,000 students and chaperones from 269 schools attended Act One field trips during the 2018-19 school year.

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Our Why