Nancy Hanks Lecture 2013: Yo-Yo Ma.

“STEM without STEAM loses steam. STEM to STEAM will power our country forward.” -Yo-Yo Ma

STEM= Science, Technology, Engineering and Math
STEAM= Science, Technology, Engineering, ARTS and Math.

Without the ARTS, we will lose steam, funding, education and immigration reform for the arts is just as important as for any other STEM division. We need creative thinkers who can look outside of the box with an innovative mind. Please listen to Yo-Yo Ma’s inspiring speech at the Nancy Hanks Lecture at The Americans for the Arts Convention of 2013.

Neighborhood Bridges & Arts-in-Education

It is the second year that the Arts-in-Education Department at The Performing Arts Center at Purchase College was thrilled to host Neighborhood Bridges, made possible by The Frog Rock Foundation.

The Children’s Theatre of Minneapolis, http://www.childrenstheatre.org/ created this program as a vision of an “arts integration residency that combines professional development, creative drama and storytelling to enhance 4th and 5th grade literacy and writing skills”. We had two teaching artists fly in from CTC to prepare classroom teachers, as well as teaching artists for a 10 week long endeavor to “team-teach classroom sessions, incorporating creative drama and storytelling to encourage, cultivate and refine student writing skills”.

Traphagan School and Pennington School of Mount Vernon, as well as Paideia School 15 of Yonkers were able to participate, with a total of 6 fourth grade classrooms, counting about 140 students. Throughout the process, the Arts-in-Education team was onsite and in constant contact with the teaching artists and teachers to document the progress of each classroom. We were hoping to find that the program encouraged students to explore their artistic side and look at reading and writing from a completely different, fun and engaging perspective.

After the 10 week in class program, we organized a Neighborhood Bridges Festival at The Performing Arts Center. Each class would read a creative piece and perform their own interpretation of a fairy tale on stage of The Pepsico Theatre, which holds up to 713 audience members! It was inspiring to see that the students came equipped with newly found theatrical voices, inventive costumes, and a ton of enthusiasm for the event!

It was an eye-opening experience and we decided to invite school administrators and the teaching participants to come together for a Neighborhood Bridges Reflection Session. We came to a mutual understanding that this program did meet and exceed our expectations. It was extremely helpful for every participating student and especially for some who were able to explore another realm of expression. Students, who had had difficulty paying attention or participating in class previously, started partaking, contributing and even delegating.

It was with great pride that we at The Performing Arts Center were able to host such engaged, talented and creative students and artists to realize such a wonderful program and event!

If you would like to learn more about the program, feel free to contact us at (914) 251-6232 or visit The Children’s Theatre’s website: http://www.childrenstheatre.org/

PAWS 2013

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On January 8th we are going to have our 26th annual Performing Arts Workshops for Secondary Students (PAWS) at SUNY Purchase. This year we are hosting about 350 students from 11 High Schools from Westchester and Fairfield County! The students will have a chance to participate in numerous workshop offerings that are normally not taught at their schools. Every student will partake in three workshops based on their preference.

This year for those students interested in DANCE, we offer:

 Jazz Dance, Belly Dance, Irish Step Dance, Modern Dance, Hip Hop, Latin Dance & Choreography

Or take one of these workshops to try out your VOCAL chords:

Jazz Singing, Gospel & Choral Singing for Musical Theatre

Or try your chance at THEATRE:

Yoga for the Actor, Directing, Audition Techniques, Advanced Studio Acting & Stage Combat

OR CHOOSE ONE OF ALL THREE FOR A MORE DIVERSE DAY OF WORKSHOPS!

There is something for everyone at PAWS to try out and we are excited to see this year’s event succeed like it has for the past 25 years: “PAWS is a celebration of the arts and helps me improve on things I’m passionate about.” “The whole day was one of the best learning experiences I’ve ever had.”

-Exploration leads to passions and we are happy to provide this opportunity to this year’s students once again.

Hansel and Gretel at Arts-in-Education!

Purchase College Opera
We are so happy to have had the Purchase College Opera conservatory perform Hansel and Gretel for our audiences!

The set, the lighting, the voices, the costumes, the orchestra! Everything was marvelous! We had about 1200 students attend the performances! Some students got the chance to have in school residencies with teaching artist Natalie Kikkenborg, a Purchase College Alum and 2 Opera performers, Robin Clifford, who played Hansel and Bronwyn White, who played Gretel. The students were able to learn abut the fairytale, different types of voices, orchestras and got to ask the performers questions right at their school before watching the performances at our Center!
One of the most common observation was ofcourse that Hansel is actually a boy! This is actually because she has more of a boy like voice, industry term: mezzo-soprano!

For more info on the Purchase College Opera please visit http://hansel-gretel.blogs.purchase.edu/