Metropolitan Homeschool Productions began in 1999 as Cornerstone Youth Theatre Project when ‘retired’ theatre professional, Barbara Enns Schwartz, developed a homeschool drama program at a community co-op. Her observations of how students who had minimal interest and no training in acting could be inspired to produce admirable performances grew into a passion for challenging them to go further – to think of a production as ‘something bigger than themselves’ and worthy of their BEST efforts.
A few introductory acting classes grew into a program with over 160 students ranging in age from 6-18. A simple, end-of-year showcase for families of students grew into a fully-mounted play festival with professional costuming, lighting and sound. The performances were valued for their standard of excellence and the program was sought after by homeschoolers all over the Northern Virginia area.
In 2014, Barbara was asked to develop a similar program of classes at Metropolitan School of the Arts and in 2017 the program debuted its first full production, Getting to Know the Sound of Music.
She continues her work in collaboration with the professional dance and music teachers of Metropolitan as well as her husband Steve, striving to help students gain an appreciation of the beauty all art should possess.
Barbara holds a B.F.A. in Theatre from Transylvania University and an M.F.A in Acting from Catholic University of America. Throughout her forty-five-year theatrical career she has worked professionally as actress, director, production manager, Equity stage manager, puppeteer and technical director. She has worked on hundreds of professional and community theatre productions. She has performed, directed and taught specifically for children’s theater most of her career.
Steve Schwartz holds a B.A. in Theatre from Washington University and studied lighting design in the master’s program at Indiana University. He has worked as lighting and set designer, technical director and IATSE stage hand. He supports Barbara and their four children as Senior Research Policy Manager at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.