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Early Childhood Conference

December 6, 2019

Young Audiences

2020 National Conference – Young Audiences Arts for Learning. March 25-27, Nopsi Hotel, New Orleans – Arts from the Start: An Exploration of Early Childhood Learning. This year’s conference will explore timely issues around the theme of early childhood learning.

Call for Workshop Proposals
Deadline: January 15, 2020

Save the Date!

March 25-27, 2020

 NOPSI Hotel
317 Baronne St., New Orleans, LA 70112

Proposals are now being accepted for workshop sessions that address the conference theme, or relate to other priority topics as detailed in the 2020 Conference Workshop Session RFP Guidelines and Application document.

To Submit a Proposal, please download, review, and fill out the 2020 RFP Guidelines and Application document. Email the completed application form to Lauren Altschuler (lauren@ya.org) by 5:00 pm ET on January 15, 2020. Incomplete applications will not be considered. You will receive email confirmation upon receipt of your proposal.

Evaluation and Selection of workshop proposals will be completed by a Conference Advisory Committee. Lead Workshop Session Presenters will be notified via email of the final selection by February 3, 2020.

Questions? Please contact Lauren Altschuler at lauren@ya.org or 212.860.1563 ext. 107.

Stay tuned for the Official 2020 Conference Site, conference.youngaudiences.org, for the latest information, including how to book accommodations through YA’s room block at  NOPSI Hotel, where workshop sessions will be held.

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Waterfall Arts

December 5, 2019

Education director position

Waterfall Arts in Belfast seeks a motivated, energetic, and creative Education Director who will be responsible for a comprehensive, mission-related programming plan. This position is responsible for the development, scheduling, and implementation of programs offered through our classes, exhibitions, and events. A supporting Programs Committee of the Board will work in close coordination with the Education Director.

STATUS: 35 Hours a week

REPORTS TO: Executive Director

LOCATION: Belfast, Maine

SUPERVISES:

  • Youth & Family Outreach Manager
  • AR Girls Teacher/Coordinator
  • Studio Monitors
  • Visual Arts and Performance Curators (contracted curator, artist or project leaders paid per project)

DUTIES & RESPONSIBILITIES

Programming

  • Leads, under the direction of the ED and the Program Committee, implementation of a comprehensive, balanced, mission-driven programming plan for Waterfall Arts that enhances participation and community involvement in the arts
  • Coordinates, schedules, and implements programming plan, producing both short-term and advance (1-2 years) schedules for use in planning, fundraising, and marketing
  • Work with Marketing Manager to assembles dates, bios, artistic descriptions, and related image content as necessary to promote and market program streams
  • Takes lead with problem/conflict resolution for students, faculty, guest artists, and other program-related situations.  Consults with Executive Director as necessary during or after identifying the problem/conflict
  • Carries out evaluations of WA programming, including classes, teaching artists, exhibitions, residencies, and events
  • Works with the staff to ensure collection of accurate and comprehensive program statistics for compilation as needed for evaluations, internal and external reports, grant submissions, and analysis
  • Schedules and coordinates off-site events such as non-profit conferences, lectures, as well as events related to the WA public booth at the Belfast Art & Farmers Market, etc.
  • Handles teaching and curated exhibition contract negotiations
  • In coordination with other staff and Development Committee, ensures the promotion of the Waterfall Arts Membership Program

General

  • Develops and oversees annual budget for program area with ED
  • Acts as key staff for Program Committee: providing committee reports to the board, communicates schedules to the committee and staff, coordination of committee assignments and goals, and recruitment and maintenance of committee membership along with Committee Board Chairs
  • Shows commitment to mission, goals and organizational objectives and is able to articulate WA mission to all constituencies both verbally and in writing
  • Work closely with ED and grant writer and/or Development Manager to develop compelling proposals for current and new programming. Available to assist with grant writing or other fundraising/development efforts
  • Shares WA representation with Executive Director or Board Members as appropriate
  • Contributes to building strategic partnerships with key constituencies (e.g. environmental and land trust groups, artists, the Maine Arts Commission, the city of Belfast, artists’ networks, downtown business groups, colleges, public schools, educators, and other professional contacts)
  • Meets regularly with Executive Director

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Bachelor’s degree in education or equivalent
  • 3+ years’ experience in program planning and development in the arts
  • Management experience
  • Media relations and communications experience
  • The ability to manage multiple projects and tasks with limited staff support
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Thrives working in a team
  • Adapts easily to a flexible work schedule that accommodates occasional evening and weekend events.
  • Self-directed, able to create a plan, prioritize initiatives and execute independently and in collaboration with others, to agreed deadlines.
  • High-energy, outgoing, can-do personality, ability to prioritize and triage real-time demands of ongoing programs.
  • Ability to give and receive feedback well
  • Enthusiastic, friendly, and professional
  • Adaptive to the changing needs of a dynamic, small office
  • Ability to prioritize tasks and handle multiple projects at once;

BENEFITS:  Salary commensurate with experience ($38,220 – $41,860), benefits include pro-rated vacation, sick leave, and holidays.

SCHEDULE: This position requires a flexible schedule at times, with some night and weekend work required as needed for staffing onsite and outreach events and meetings.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS: Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Most work will be done at a computer with some background noise. Requires typing, participating in meetings. Limited public speaking will be required.

ABOUT WATERFALL ARTS: Launched in 2000, Waterfall Arts is a community arts center that offers resources to students, professionals, and arts enthusiasts of all ages. Opportunities include classes, exhibitions, art events, performances, open community studios (clay, print, and darkroom photography), public art projects, and more.

HOW TO APPLY: Please send a cover letter, resume, and references to jobs@waterfallarts.org. Please submit all materials as a single PDF. Position open until filled.

Waterfall Arts is an equal opportunity employer, committed to attracting, developing, and retaining exceptional people. We welcome and encourage applicants with diverse experiences, identities, and educational backgrounds. Applicants and employees shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender (including pregnancy and gender expression) identity, color, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local law or ordinance.

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Harvard Study on Music

December 4, 2019

Songs across societies

Scientists at Harvard published a study on music as a cultural product, which examines what features of song tend to be shared across societies.

We sometimes talk about cultures and communities in terms of the music that represent them. I have been moved to tears more than once while listening to a song while visiting another country. One time while visiting a Japanese elementary school I looked down the row of American guests in an outdoor setting and there wasn’t a dry eye in the group.

The Harvard scientists set out to address big questions: Is music a cultural universal? If that’s a given, which musical qualities overlap across disparate societies? If it isn’t, why does it seem so ubiquitous? But they needed a data set of unprecedented breadth and depth. Over a five-year period, the team hunted down hundreds of recordings in libraries and private collections of scientists half a world away.

“We are so used to being able to find any piece of music that we like on the internet,” said Mehr, who is now a principal investigator at Harvard’s Music Lab. “But there are thousands and thousands of recordings buried in archives.

The entire article is at THIS LINK.

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Light Up the World

December 3, 2019

Local workshops

On Saturday morning I arrived at the library in my town with a car full of materials to make lanterns. Basket reeds, telephone wire, tiny LED lights, industrial size coffee filters, white glue, blow dryers, brushes and containers to hold the water downed glue. I learned how to make lanterns from artist Gowri Savoor while attending the 2017 New Hampshire state arts education conference. I am forever grateful to Julianne Gadoury, New Hampshire State Council on the Arts Education Program Director invited Catherine Ring and myself to attend.

Since that conference Lindsay Pinchbeck, founder and director of Sweet Tree Arts Center in Hope, and I have offered the lantern making workshop several times at the local and state level to all ages and backgrounds of people. This is the type of art making that is inviting to all.

When we’ve provided the workshop it exemplifies the essence of small communities in Maine. Whether it’s at the library, community center, a community event, or an arts focused facility people find joy and success making lanterns.

Kate Smith is involved in the South Berwick Lanternfest that takes place each August. This past summer she helped lead music making with a drum circle and at the end they release the lanterns down the river to honor those who have gone before.  All ages come together for an amazing day. Whether it is small or large communities art making has the power to bring communities together.

The two hour lantern making workshop is enough time to make at least one lantern (two people made 3 in the time allotted) and dry it enough to carry home. The next day the tree lighting on the town common was a chance to lead the processional with Santa following in a town fire truck. Two people returned with their lanterns decorated. I wondered if everyone would return and sure enough my heart was warmed seeing everyone with their lanterns lit waiting at the designated spot.

My takeaways:

  • The arts bring people together in a non-judgmental way and everyone feels good.
  • All ages need and want community based chances to come together.
  • People naturally work across generations to help each other.
  • Many adults don’t make art everyday but jump at the chance to do so and love it.
  • Adults are looking for opportunities to do something engaging side-by-side with children.
  • Having a follow-up chance to use the lanterns collectively is like the glue that is needed in communities.

What I’m curious about is this – what have you noticed or been involved with that includes the arts to bring people together beyond the school – in the community? Please feel free to share in the comment section below. Thanks!

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Intergenerational

December 2, 2019

Puppetry, Storytelling, Music

On Saturday, December 7, students from Falmouth High School (FHS) and residents of The Cedars retirement community in Portland will gather for An Intergenerational Celebration of Puppetry, Storytelling, and Music. The event will mark the culmination of a four-month long project in collaboration between FHS, The Cedars, and Figures of Speech Theatre (FST).
FST Director of Education, Ian Bannon, designed and directed the project, which began with a series of TimeSlips creative storytelling sessions at The Cedars. TimeSlips is a collaborative storytelling format designed by MacArthur Fellow Anne Basting for use by people with cognitive disabilities like dementia. Creativity is an ideal way for people with cognitive challenges to communicate. TimeSlips is developed as a ritual so people with memory loss can learn it through their subconscious or implicit memory. It is based on shifting the emphasis from memory to imagination.
FHS students took turns joining Bannon for the sessions at The Cedars, assisting with the storytelling sessions while gaining first-hand experience with TimeSlips and familiarity with the residents.
FHS Theater Teacher Dede Waite’s students from FHS then dove into the rehearsal process, learning about full-body silhouette shadow puppetry from Bannon and Devon Kelley-Yurdin, a visual artist and community organizer. Students then used the skills learned during rehearsal to adapt three of the TimeSlips-generated stories into original shadow plays. Students in FHS Music Teacher Jake Sturtevant’s music composition class created an original score for each performance, elevating and polishing their fellow students’ work.
Towards the end of the rehearsal process, Cedars residents were invited to join FHS students at the school for a hands-on shadow puppetry workshop, allowing students a chance to work side-by-side with the residents to create short vignettes using the skills they had developed.
The final performances will take place during An Intergenerational Celebration of Puppets, Storytelling, and Music at The Cedars at 1:30 PM on Saturday, December 7. Students will present their adaptations live for the residents. Following the performances, the students, residents, and audience members will be invited to join in an ice cream social designed to foster an intergenerational exchange about the process and performance. Members of the public are fully encouraged to attend.
This project was been funded in part by a Project Grant for Organizations from the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.
Since 1982, Figures of Speech Theatre, has toured the world for more than 35 years with original works created at the intersection of drama, poetry, sculpture and dance. The company has performed in venues including the New Victory Theater, the Smithsonian Institution, the Kennedy Center, and Tokyo’s International House. Through their educational programing—which takes place in all 16 Maine counties—FST seeks to engage imaginations, impart skill-based training, awaken consciousness regarding world cultures, and expand students’ sense of life’s possibilities. We offer a range of programming and touring productions in service of that vision.
More information about Figures of Speech Theatre is available on their website: www.figures.org.
The Cedars, Maine and Northern New England’s most comprehensive, non-profit senior community was founded in 1929 as the Jewish Home for Aged. As we celebrate 90 years of innovation, The Cedars offers a full continuum of senior living options, including: Independent Living, Assisted Living, Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Care. Currently under construction is the new Sam L. Cohen Households, due to open in Fall 2020, will provide a home environment using the best practices for an enlightened, person-centered approach to care in private rooms for rehabilitation, skilled nursing care and a new, vitally-needed memory care assisted living.
More information about The Cedars is available on their website: www.thecedarsportland.org.
An Intergenerational Celebration of Puppetry, Story-Telling, and Music will be presented on Saturday, December 7 at 1:30 PM at The Cedars, 630 Ocean View Ave in Portland. The performance, which will be followed by an ice cream social, is open to the public free of charge. For more information, please contact Angie Hunt at (207) 221-7171.
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Simon & Garfunkel

December 1, 2019

The Sound of Silence

OK, I admit it – this song takes me back many years. Never gets old for me!

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The Ross Sisters

November 30, 2019

Solid Potato Salad

A real treat – amazing dancing and singing from a different era.

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