Artist Connect: Clara Kamunde

In an effort to connect our communities and networks with our teaching artists, we are beginning a new blog series called "Artist Connect". Each week, we will feature one of our artists on our roster and dive deeper into their art form and history with Young Audiences. 

In honor of Black History Month, Young Audiences honors the many artistic and historic accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans. The first few "Artist Connect" posts will be of our artists that honor and celebrate the incredible stories of wisdom, courage and power of African-Americans through their art. 

 The power of creativity and play to catalyze personal change inspires Clara’s work as a performer, teacher, laughter yoga leader, and team builder. Clara brings her experiences to the classroom to encourage play-based self-realization and to enable individuals and communities to thrive.

The power of creativity and play to catalyze personal change inspires Clara’s work as a performer, teacher, laughter yoga leader, and team builder. Clara brings her experiences to the classroom to encourage play-based self-realization and to enable individuals and communities to thrive.

Getting to know...Clara Kamunde, Storyteller

Can you tell us a little bit about your art form?

The shortest distance between two people is a story. Storytelling is also a universal human trait. We make meaning through our constructed narratives and storytelling is an interactive process that brings people together to discover ourselves.

What is your teaching philosophy and how do you use that to approach each new audience/classroom?

I think of myself as a facilitator and believe that learning is an active, constructive process. My approach to an audience or a classroom is to invite investigation and discovery through process.

How does your art form help connect students to what they are learning in school?

Storytelling is the oldest educational tool and even in the digital age students love oral storytelling and narrative can be used across the curriculum to bring subjects/content to life.

How do the lessons and skills you teach students about or through your art form apply to their everyday life outside of the classroom?

Communication, collaboration and critical thinking are skills embedded in the art of storytelling. These skills are among the constellation of 21st century skills every student needs to thrive outside the classroom.

Why do you believe it is important for every student to have access to the arts?

In too many schools cognitive skills are emphasized over other learning domains. However, emerging research suggests that students learn best by integrating cognitive skills with effective and psychomotor skills. I believe that art’s learning is the best way to do this, so it’s essential that every student have access to the arts.

What are three words that describe your performances?

Engaging. Entertaining. Enlightening.

What has been the most memorable part of the programs you have brought to students with Young Audiences?

Story Telling and Story Acting with the second grade students at a school in San Jose. Their ability to tell and then re-enact their stories has been really profound. Even shy students have volunteered to tell their stories and it’s gratifying to provide a forum where students feel confident that their fantasies and ideas have value.

What is the most rewarding aspect of becoming a Young Audiences roster artist?

To be able to work with an organization that has a strong commitment to and that advocates for arts education.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Thank you to Clara Kamunde for providing these responses. Learn more about her here!

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Artist Connect: Hip Hop Fundamentals

In an effort to connect our communities and networks with our teaching artists, we are beginning a new blog series called "Artist Connect". Each week, we will feature one of our artists on our roster and dive deeper into their art form and history with Young Audiences. 

In honor of Black History Month, Young Audiences honors the many artistic and historic accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans. The first few "Artist Connect" posts will be of our artists that honor and celebrate the incredible stories of wisdom, courage and power of African-Americans through their art. 

 Hip Hop Fundamentals is a diverse group of professional breakdance performers and instructors dedicated to teaching youth empowerment, social issues, and academic content through Hip Hop Dance.

Hip Hop Fundamentals is a diverse group of professional breakdance performers and instructors dedicated to teaching youth empowerment, social issues, and academic content through Hip Hop Dance.

Getting to know.....Hip Hop Fundamentals

Can you tell us a little bit about your art form?

Breaking (or Breakdancing) is, to me, the coolest dance on the planet. It’s incredibly technical and physically demanding, but it’s also very innocent, spontaneous, and soulful. Breaking, created by disenfranchised New York City youth in the 1970’s, began as an informal activity, a folk dance for the young and energetic. Since then, it has grown to be a youth-driven International phenomenon, and its inclusive nature allows for all ages, cultures, abilities, and individuals to create a home and find identity inside the Breaking circle. It’s entertaining, expressive, and unlike any other dance in the world.

How did you first hear about Young Audiences? What made you decide to become a roster artist?

Young Audiences approached Hip Hop Fundamentals in 2013, and we quickly realized that we wanted to collaborate with them. After working with other agencies, it was an uplifting experience to find an organization who truly cared about presenting quality arts education, getting programming to communities in need, and also looking after roster artists. Breaking is a very specific and often under-appreciated art form within Hip Hop dance, and Young Audiences embraced our art form and our teaching style, helping our company grow and succeed. I am a huge fan of the work Young Audiences has tirelessly done to simultaneously empower youth and roster artists.

How does your art form help connect students to what they are learning in school?

Where we can, we partner with schools to connect our workshops and residencies with themes, topics, or essential questions which students are currently studying in the classroom. We’ve linked everything from history and social studies to reading skills into our dancing, and because Breakdancing is so inherently creative, open, and youth-driven, it’s easy to connect its physical movements to any academic content. In terms of our assembly programs, we have performed shows which teach subjects like the American Civil Rights Movement to States of Matter in Physics. We are always looking for new ways to integrate Breaking into the classroom, as the arts can often be the most effective way to learn.

How do the lessons and skills you teach students about or through your art form apply to their everyday life outside of the classroom?

Breaking is a very dynamic, intense, and individualized dance form. To learn it, one must be disciplined, open-minded, persistent, and healthy. When we teach the dance in a community or classroom setting, students have to work together in small and large groups, practicing teamwork, confidence, and authoritative skills. Breakers also have to be creative, and learning Breaking (through our workshops or assembly programs) teaches an appreciation for diversity. Breaking (and Hip Hop) culture in general is a powerful example of diversity of culture, style, and ways of thinking. There’s a long list of positive influences which Breaking can provide, and to us, our art form is the perfect way for young people to practice life skills while having fun.

Why do you believe it is important for every student to have access to the arts?

To quote Pearl Schaeffer, my Arts Integration professor from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, “The arts let you be challenged without ever being wrong.” The arts require thought, action, and emotion simultaneously. The arts, particularly dance, utilize all parts of our brains. Every student needs:
-A voice
-A variety of ways to process information
-A community and a safe space
-An emotional outlet
-A series of never-ending (yet achievable) challenges

Because of these needs, the arts are not only important, they are vital to the growth of every student.

What are three words that describe your performances?

Dynamic, Engaging, and Fun.

What is the most rewarding aspect of becoming a Young Audiences roster artist?

Young Audiences allows me to do what I love for a living.

Where can we learn and see more about Hip Hop Fundamentals?

Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Website

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Thank you to Mark from Hip Hop Fundamentals for providing these responses. 

Remember: Young Audiences is offering a $100 discount on Hip Hop Fundamentals and five other roster artists. Available until February 15th! Find out more about that here

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Welcoming Emily Katz, our new Arts Education Administrative Assistant!

Young Audiences of Northern California turns 60 this year and is poised for all types of strategically creative expansion. The addition of this new administrative role will allow for more face to face interaction between our programming and development staff and teaching artists, schools, board members, and supporters. Emily, in her new role, supports Young Audiences of Northern California's future and our ability to serve both students and artists symbiotically.

Emily joins Young Audiences after recently completing her masters degree in Museum Studies at the University of San Francisco. In addition to her recent internship at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, she has been an art class instructor and teaching artist at the Omaha Children’s Museum, an arts education intern at the National Museum of Mexican Arts in Chicago and the Latino cultural program's intern at the Denver Art Museum. These experiences, combined with her education at U.S.F, have solidified her belief in using arts education as a tool for social change and building community.

We have already seen the value of Emily and the addition of this new role, and are excited to see where this 60th year takes us. Welcome Emily! 

 "I am excited to further the mission of Young Audiences to bring art experiences to students around the Bay Area. My past work has highlighted the critical responsibility we hold to provide arts education to children. I firmly believe in the mission and goals of Young Audiences and am ready to jump into this work".

"I am excited to further the mission of Young Audiences to bring art experiences to students around the Bay Area. My past work has highlighted the critical responsibility we hold to provide arts education to children. I firmly believe in the mission and goals of Young Audiences and am ready to jump into this work".

Celebrate Black History: Special Assembly Opportunities

Young Audiences honors the many artistic and historic contributions of African Americans. We are offering discounts ($100 off) on select assembly programs that showcase incredible stories of courage, wisdom, and humor through traditional and contemporary African-American storytelling and music.

Book by February 15th, 2018 for any performance date* thru May 15th, 2018.
*Dates are subject to artist’s availability.

Assembly Performances by:

Alphabet Rockers

  • "Change the World" – Students get up on their feet learning choreography, thinking critically about changing the world...
  • "Stand Up for You" – Students see the impact of exclusion when a new kid comes to school in this engaging assembly...
  • "Shine" In this high-energy concert, students are highly engaged with hip hop dance, beat boxing and self-expression...

Clara Kamunde

  • "Fair’s Fair" – Clara tells ancient tales from around the world that entertain and teach fairness, kindness, and justice as universal values... 
  • "Tales Without Borders: The World through Wisdom Stories" – Students' imaginations transport them to a different time and place...
  • "Trickster’s Treats" – Trickster tales and fables are found in all cultures around the world. These tales help us better understand human behavior... 
  • "Safaris Stories" – Set in the vast African landscape, animals abound in tales that educate about the climate, ecology, and geography of this great continent...

Diane Ferlatte

  • "Aesop: Alive & Well" - Diane weaves five of Aesop’s fables emphasizing creativity, perseverance, honesty, and the difference between need, want, and greed.
  • "Have I Got a Story To Tell" - Drawing on stories and songs from African-American history and folktales, this program emphasizes principles, character, and values.
  • "The Promised Land: The Dream of a King- Martin Luther King, Jr." - From “Jim Crow” to “This Land is Our Land,” this program honors Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his legacy with stories and songs from the Civil Rights struggle and Dr. King’s personal reflections.
  • "Wickety Whack: Brer Rabbit is Back" - This Grammy-nominated, award-winning program brings to life tales of a little rabbit that outsmarts bigger and stronger animals. These tales gave slaves in the South hope and provided humor in the face of adversity.
  • "We Were There" - This program emphasizes not only Black History, but Blacks in American History, and provides an excellent tie-in to an American history curriculum.

Hip Hop Fundamentals

  • "The Principles of Hip Hop" - Hip Hop Fundamentals uses interactive dance to explore Hip Hop’s rich cultural history and how undeserved inner-city youth changed the world. This extremely dynamic show focuses on youth empowerment, diversity, creativity, and working together, embodied by Hip Hop’s four principles: Peace, Love, Unity, and Having Fun!

 


Kirk Waller

  • "Cultural Tales from Around the World" - Using a dynamic blend of mime, musicality and emotion, Kirk takes students around the world with wonderful, moving and humorous tales from Europe, South America and Africa
  • "Storytelling: Quck, Gabble, Squawk and Other Animal Tales" - Do you know why birds peck away at the ground or why the turtle shell is cracked? Hear delightful pourquoi or “How-They-Came-To-Be” tales, as well as a host of other courageous, silly and serious animal stories
  • "African American Folktales and Legends" - Kirk shares incredible stories of courage, wisdom and humor, through African and African-American stories, folktales and legends.

 SoVoSo

  • "Rhythm, Harmony and Improvisation" - In this assembly performance program, SoVoSo demonstrates their dynamic and inspirational "voices only" music-making and group improvisations.
  • "One planet, One World, One People" - This in-depth performance honors Black History Month and contributions of African Americans, specifically in the music field.  SoVoSo share their own personal stories, the history of African-American musicians and how they have inspired and changed music for the better: a celebration with an overall message that we are "One Planet, One World, One People."

 

Call (415) 974-5554 or email scheduling@ya-nc.org to book an assembly today.  

Assembles must be booked by February 15th, 2018 for performance dates through May 15th, 2018. This special offer does not apply to any previously contracted assemblies or program. PLEASE NOTE: Dates are subject to assembly artists’ schedules and availability.

Join our team!

Arts Education Administrative Assistant (Program and Fund Development Support)

Job Description

Passionate about arts education? Dream of collaborating with artists on enriching experiences for young people? Want to spend your days bringing arts curriculum to students all around the Bay Area—over 20,000 of them a year (and counting)?

Young Audiences of Northern California (YANC), a leading provider of arts experiences for youth throughout the Bay Area since 1958, seeks an Arts Education Administrative Assistant (Program and Development Departments) to work Part-Time to help us achieve our mission of providing arts experiences that inspire young people, expand learning, and enliven communities.

Today, young people receive dramatically fewer opportunities to engage with the arts than youth did just 25 years ago. At Young Audiences, we counter that by working with schools and communities to present engaging arts programming that touches Bay Area students who might not otherwise have access to the arts. But our ability to do this hinges on having the right administrative assistant to help lead the charge – is this you?

If You Are

  • A self-starter who is able to learn from past processes but can ultimately develop your own systems
  • A “people person” with strong customer service skills who can get along with artists, administrators, students, coworkers and board members, all with diverse backgrounds
  • Both creative in big-picture, strategic thinking and also detail-oriented and reliable in execution
  • Versed in the arts and enchanted with the idea that viewing art performances could be part of your job
  • Excited to go home each day knowing you are improving the lives of Bay Area children and getting things done

Then this might be the job for you!

Your Role:

Administrative Assistant (Programming & Development Department Support) Responsibilities

Programming Assistant

  • Coordinating artist/venue contract scheduling and program delivery
  • Update compliance data in Salesforce
  • Seek updated compliance data from artists, and handling aspects of that communication and data input
  • Update and maintain Website Program Content (Squarespace) such asartist bios, program blurbs, photos; fixing broken links; updating pricing;

Development Assistant

  • Salesforce data input: donation information and attach supporting documents
  • Maintain Foundation profiles and all related documents
  • Attach research to existing Foundation profiles
  • Draft Thank You letters and other donations-associated correspondence
  • Scan donation receipts, award letters and signed letters
  • Facilitate scheduling of fundraising committee meetings
  • Research predetermined Foundations and Corporate Grants

Day to Day Operations

  • Daily Office Duties including: Monitoring phone, email inbox, and printing.
  • Attend selected performances, document and photograph them and make in-person connections with the artists and the venues
  • Assist in outreach marketing including program catalog, monitoring and posting tosocial media sites

Qualifications

The successful candidate will have most of the following qualifications:

  • Background in arts and/or education and the ability to articulate the benefits of YANC programs with enthusiasm and clarity;
  • Experience in programming scheduling, communications, community engagement, or related field;
  • Basic background in Salesforce or any other CRM a must;
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office: Excel, Word, PowerPoint, etc;
  • Ability to optimize communication techniques for audiences and dialogue partners of diverse racial/ethnic/cultural backgrounds, religious backgrounds, ages, community sectors, etc.;
  • Familiarity with K-12 education, National Core Arts Standards, and California State Department of Education Visual and Performing Arts Standards a plus;
  • Prior non-profit experience or knowledge.

Qualified candidates must possess great customer service, communication and organizational skills. Ability to handle sensitive information in a confidential manner.

This is a part-time position to begin with, approximately 20-24 hours per week.

This Moment

We are on the eve our of 60th anniversary and poised for all types of strategically creative expansion. For the right person, this job represents a unique and exceptional opportunity to come in and make something grow. You’ll be part of an intimate team of three full-time staff members working together with a highly accomplished board to make our well-run organization even stronger. Your support will have profound effects on our future and our ability to serve both students and artists symbiotically.

About Us

Our Board of Directors, staff, artists, and community partners are comprised of creative, diverse, and dynamic individuals that value authenticity, curiosity, self-discovery, self-expression, understanding, and connection. We leverage differences in work and learning styles to maximize our efforts and deliver outstanding experiences. We work hard and enjoy having fun. Most importantly, we believe in the mission and support one another in our personal and professional endeavors.

To Apply

Send an email with the subject line “YANC Office Assistant” to jobs@ya-nc.org

Please attach:  your resume and a one-page or less cover letter detailing why you believe you would be a great fit for this position. No phone calls please.

Deadline: November 10, 2017

Young Audiences seeks candidates that nurture our commitment to providing outstanding services that impact diverse and multicultural children, families, artists, and community members. Young Audiences is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. Our success depends on the combined skills and talents of all our employees. We are committed to making employment decisions without regard to race, religious creed, color, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, religion, marital status, family status, medical condition, disability, military service, pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions or any other classification protected by federal, state, and local laws and ordinances.