This year’s Storybook Ballet performance and Free Arts Day, we were able to include children and teaching artists from four Professional Artist Series all taking place at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts.
The participants were from one of our partner facilities and they joined Dance Theater West dancers on stage for portions of the Alice in Wonderland ballet. One highlight was the teens celebrating and free-style dancing during the bows at the end of the performance. These same teens also participated in a spoken word Professional Artist Series and wrote poems that were recorded. Those recordings were played in the theater after the ballet portion of the show. A few audience members expressed how moved they were by the poems, and some of the teens were surprised and happy to hear that their words impacted people.
Two partner facilities participated in two different visual arts Professional Artist Series in the weeks leading up to the performance, and their art was displayed in the lobby of the theater. One teaching artist, led children through the creation of an accordion book where each child created a visual representation of their autobiography. The other teaching artist led the children through a photography and painting series where the children created and illustrated stories. Both artists and the children from both houses were able to attend the event. The children were very excited to see their artists and their art displayed, some even were brave and shared more information about their creations with attendees.
The Free Arts Day portion of the event had four different art projects. Painting The Roses My Way was one of our art projects that allowed the children to color white fabric roses using the colors on our color key that they felt best described themselves. The World of My Own project gave the children an opportunity to use clay, stickers, charms, and of course, glitter glue to create a world made just for them. At the Unbirthday Card table, the children clacked away on our typewriter to write themselves or someone special in their lives an unbirthday card, then afterward decorated their cards. The final project available was our Mome Rath Finger Puppets, where children wrote down their worries on a piece of felt and then used that felt to create their puppets to chase away their worries.