Hip to Hip Theatre Company, now in its 8th season of touring free, family-friendly professional theatre to public parks in under-served communities, announced today the appointment of Gabourey Sidibe to its Board of Directors.

Inspired by the legacy of Joseph Papp’s New York Shakespeare Festival, the Queens-based Hip to Hip Theatre Company was founded in 2007 with the aim of producing free, family-friendly, professional productions of popular classics in public spaces. Hip to Hip’s flagship program of “Free Shakespeare in the Park” consists of a tour of two professional productions to twelve parks, with an emphasis on outreach to under-served and underprivileged communities. Hip to Hip provides its beneficiaries with a total theatre experience, including great plays, professional actors, sets, lights and costumes.

In the summer of 2013, Hip to Hip launched a brand new children’s program called “Kids & the Classics”. The program was so successful that it will return in 2014. “Kids & the Classics” is offered before every performance, and it gives children of all ages a taste of live theatre by introducing them to classical text and performance.

“It is a perfect fit, and I jumped at the chance when our Managing Director, Guy Ventoliere, brought the idea to me” said the Artistic Director, Jason Marr. He went on to say, “Gabourey’s experience and her integrity as an artist make her ideal for Hip to Hip’s Board of Directors, where her unique perspective will have a welcome voice as we navigate the next stage of our development.”

“I wholeheartedly endorse Hip to Hip’s belief that great plays and great performances can change lives,” said Gabourey Sidibe.

Gabourey joins current Board members Nina Szarkowski Jones, Daren Kelly, Jason Marr, Joy Marr and Katie O’Sullivan.