Frequently Asked Questions about California’s New Dance Credential Law
We are truly in a new era in California Dance Education. With the passage of SB916, the Theatre & Dance Act of 2016, also known as TADA!, we as a community of educators and advocates have so much to celebrate. As I wrote here on ARTSblog last September, Dance Credentials had not been obtainable in the state of California since 1970—and now they’ve been reinstated again. Yet this hard-earned victory leaves our profession with a new set of questions. Here are answers to our most frequently received questions in the first month after the passage of the standalone credentials in dance and in theatre.
Artists and Communities: John Malpede & Christina Sanchez Juarez in Conversation
In 2016, the Los Angeles Poverty Department—a performance group now in its 30th year made up of members and former members of the city’s Skid Row community—created and performed multiple new works, put on an annual parade and festival, secured awards from the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts and the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, and continued to run the Skid Row History Museum and Archive. LAPD founder and director John Malpede and L.A.-based social practice artist Christina Sanchez Juarez recently sat down together to connect over their tireless work using art to empower L.A.’s homeless and working poor.
Building a Culture of Creativity
The author, a Global Business Director at Thomson Reuters (TR) and Chair of the Board of the Arts & Business Council of New York (ABC/NY), worked with ABC/NY’s arts-based employee engagement platform and the Thomson Reuters Project Empire employee resource group to launch Thomson Reuters Arts & Culture (TRAC)–a program geared towards building an outlet for employee creativity. Here, she talks about corporate and personal benefits of the arts, as well as her vision for what TRAC could become.
The Starving Artist Syndrome & How to Cure It
Working in both arts and marketing/business, I've noticed a disconnect between the desire for artists to become successful and earn a living with their art and how they think about their craft as a business.
Childhood Lesson: Color Outside the Lines—How being a child artist helped me become a better
I’ve been an artist since my earliest childhood memories, falling in love with crayons, paint, paper, pastels, pencils—anything I could get my hands on. I would create with reckless abandon. Slowly, as I got older, I began to learn how to become a better artist. I learned how to control the medium, hone the skills and techniques needed to make my art look like it was supposed to, how to follow the rules. Although important, I fell into the trap of focusing too much on the technique and final product rather than the process of creativity. I was not exploring the potential for creative discovery by breaking the rules! Here are my top 5 reasons how coloring outside the lines has helped me in business today.
STEM to STEAM
Business needs a creative workforce to compete in the global economy. But our schools are locked into 20th century priorities. We are testing mastery of content when the Internet delivers content in 0.7 seconds. If the only public measure of a school’s progress is standardized testing, then schools have every incentive to “teach to the test.” With limited resources, teaching the arts is dropped, diminished, or dismissed.
Testing establishes the educational priorities. So, how do you measure creativity? How do you test for the A in STEAM? In Massachusetts, we began discussing the concept of a Creative Challenge Index.
Inspiring Future Scholars—An Intergenerational Model
While the economy seems to be on the upswing, with jobs increasing and unemployment down, one group is still falling behind: children. The rate of children living in poverty has gradually increased since 2008; currently, 20% of children are living in poverty. That’s one in five American children. This means that the citizens most at risk to deficient health, emotional, and cognitive development, and the poorest citizens of our country, are also the youngest.
It’s Time to Engage and Listen to Millennials
It’s not uncommon for our media and popular culture to generalize Millennials as lazy and narcissistic, with an outsized sense of entitlement, interested only in their next opportunity to take a selfie. But this is the largest, best educated and most college debt-ridden generation in Western history. Based on a growing body of research, Millennials have emerged as creative, adventurous, civic minded, tech savvy, socially aware, and consider themselves global citizens, to name a few of their positive characteristics and drivers.
Seven Resources for Highly Effective Arts Professionals
The most important reason to join or renew your membership with Americans for the Arts is because we can help connect you to our entire member network—more than 6,000 people who work for themselves or for our nearly 1,500 member organizations, covering the entire spectrum of Americans with an interest in advancing the arts. That’s not all we do, though. Here are seven benefits we offer our members that make us your best bet.
The Arts Don’t Just Heal, They Also Unify and Inspire Action
I have been playing a lot of piano lately—my antidote for when I am feeling low, or my energy source for when I am working through challenges. This election season has brought to light challenges in our country, divides that I have always believed the arts can bridge. And so I find myself sitting at the keyboard and playing tunes by artists I admire like Bob Dylan, or trying out some dark Leonard Cohen pieces on guitar, or writing some of my own poetry in order to help me get from one state of mind to another. It also makes me imagine how to better convey the power of the arts during these difficult times as part of the solution for our country, much like my own art does for me.
Why Does Your Business Value the Arts?
In their acceptance speeches at the 2016 BCA 10 Awards, twelve industry leaders spoke about what being honored at the 2016 BCA 10 means to them and why they encourage and seek out opportunities to bring the arts into their worlds.
"We believe that everyone in this room is art. And when art and the folks in this room come together, we spark innovation; we inspire youth. We celebrate and heal communities. We stimulate economies. We sustain this great nation."