The Croton Academy of Arts was founded in 2003, by two theater professionals, Catherine Riedel and Myrlin Valerio, to help teens develop their self-expression and individuality through creative exploration.
Our initial program, The Croton Academy of Comedic Arts (dubbed "caca") began with a class of 18 curious Croton students in Catherine's living room. Soon, the expanding program found space for classes and rehearsals in local church basements. Performances were staged in village auditoriums and restaurants, and caca troupes traveled to schools, shelters, and other area venues for benefit performances.
Initially focused on improvisational and sketch comedy, the Academy has grown to include acting, summer camp, teen and children's theatre plays, show choir, dance company, adult improv classes, and more.
In 2011, after years of nomadic existence, CAA moved to their first home and then in 2012, to their permanent location at 8-b Old Post Road South in Croton on Hudson, New York. Our new center includes space for workshops, rehearsal, and performances.
Nearly one thousand students have participated in Academy programs, with enrollment expanding every year. Original caca graduates are now performing in college improv and theater programs across the country and working with professional improv companies.
The Croton Academy of Arts, located in Westchester County, New York, provides unique programs for children, teens, and adults that foster creativity, communication, self-awareness, confidence, and social interaction.