Go Backstage

2020 Spring Gala Honors Donald Thoms, Public Media Legend

Adventure Theatre MTC (ATMTC), recipient of the Harold Oaks Award, a national award for excellence in Theatre for Young Audiences, is pleased to announce that it will honor Donald Thoms with the Spirit of Adventure Award, date TBD, at its 2020 Spring Gala for his accomplishments in delighting and educating families through the medium of television and providing opportunities for talented individuals, especially people of color. Thoms’s career spans more than 45 years, most of it in Public Television as well as at the Discovery Communications.

A seasoned broadcaster, journalist and leader in media, Thoms is recognized for his commitment to mentor for up and coming talent. As a senior member of several national broadcasting networks, he has been a staunch supporter for independent and minority producers and filmmakers. In addition, Thoms has extensive experience with television production and development, staff and budget management, journalism, marketing and communications, and strategic planning.

Beyond television audiences, Donald Thoms has also passed his love of the arts on to his children. He and his wife of nearly 50 years, Mariana, helped raise their daughter, Tracie, from an aspiring 10-year-old star to the heights of Broadway, television, and the silver screen. Their son, Austin, has emerged with their nurture as a talented musician and composer. “There was never any doubt they were going into the arts,” says their father.

“Adventure Theatre is dear to my heart because of its commitment to providing high quality musical theatre experiences to our youngest children and opening doors for them to prepare for college and careers,” says Thoms. “I am honored to receive this honor and deeply touched to have my efforts to open doors, to educate, and to celebrate theatre recognized by Adventure.”

Leon Seemann, Executive Director of Adventure Theatre MTC, notes that Thoms embodies and has lived out the values, standards, and commitments that are core to ATMTC. “Entertainment is the most accessible way to inspire children to change their world and empathize with those around them. Donald Thoms has made a career and a lifetime of delivering this inspiration directly into children’s homes.”

Donald Thoms will be honored with the Judith Frosh Spirit of Adventure award, named after the co-founder of Adventure Theatre MTC. For more information about Adventure Theatre MTC or its 2020 Virtual Gala, visit or call 301-251-5766, ext. 2223.