Mary-Mitchell Campbell honored by Transport Group Theatre Company

Katherine Nolan Brown; katherine@asteponline.org | 212.921.1227


MUSICAL POWERHOUSE
MARY-MITCHELL CAMPBELL
HONORED BY TRANSPORT GROUP THEATRE COMPANY
ON FEBRUARY 6th

Founder of ASTEP Honored with Performances by Tituss Burgess,
Raúl Esparza, Debra Monk, Melissa Errico,
Sierra Boggess, and More

February 7, 2017 – The Transport Group Theatre Company – which last night celebrated their 2017 Annual Gala with “An Evening with Mary-Mitchell Campbell and Friends” – honored the accomplished Broadway musical director and arranger with an evening of songs featuring the pianist herself at The Times Center.

Several of Campbell’s Broadway collaborators lent their talents to the evening, including Tituss Burgess; Raúl Esparza; Debra Monk; Melissa Errico; and Sierra Boggess. Video greetings were sent from Kristin Chenoweth and Jonathan Groff, who were unable to attend. Each performer told a short story to honor their friend, citing not only her musical talent but more importantly, her giving and loving nature and “for bringing so much love, music and grace into the world” through her efforts with ASTEP (Artists Striving to End Poverty) the non-profit arts organization founded by Campbell in 2006.

Jack Cummings III, The Transport Group’s Artistic Director, choked up when speaking of Campbell’s involvement of their first-ever project, the 2002 production of Thornton Wilde’s Our Town, for which Campbell composed, arranged, and directed the music. Citing her contribution as having arranged an entire score incorporating the Shaker song “Simple Gifts,” he said she created an expanded universe of sound for the production, and as this was the inaugural effort for The Transport Group, she was in effect their “birth mother” and they her baby, with her music ushering forth a brand new theatrical entity.

Mary-Mitchell, on accepting the award, thanked all her teachers who guided and supported her, and all the artists and directors with whom she had worked. Referring to ASTEP, she said “art has the power to transform lives …..” and that now, more than ever, “we need to make art.”

ABOUT ASTEP:
ASTEP was conceived by Broadway Musical Director Mary-Mitchell Campbell and Juilliard students to transform the lives of youth using the most powerful tool they had: their art. Today, ASTEP connects performing and visual artists with underserved youth in the U.S. and around the world to awaken their imaginations, foster critical thinking, and help them break the cycle of poverty. For more information, please visit www.ASTEP.org.

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Jennifer Saltzstein Kaffenberger Fellowship

Jen play

ASTEP is honored to announce that the Jennifer Saltzstein Kaffenberger Fellowship is now accepting applications for 2017 summer programming. This Fellowship will take place from July 1 – August 18 2017 in the position of a storytelling/theatre Teaching Artist at the Refugee Youth Summer Academy in New York City.

For the eighth consecutive summer, ASTEP will support the 2017 Refugee Youth Summer Academy (RYSA) in partnership with the International Rescue Committee. ASTEP designs, implements, and oversees RYSA’s creative arts classes, which focus on visual art, dance, music, and storytelling for 120- 130 refugee youth aged 5-25 years old. RYSA is a six-week summer camp, held five days a week from July – August; from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and culminates in a graduation ceremony and performance for students’ families and their community.

The Fellow will be joining a team of 16 ASTEP Teaching Artists, who will lead the creative arts classes at RYSA. This Fellow will work to build English language skills, school readiness, coping and self-regulation skills within this vulnerable and underserved population——tools they need to thrive in school and to help build a new life in their new home. The Fellowship responsibilities include:

  • Curriculum building and lesson planning for three (3) classes, each to meet twice weekly.
  • Planning and teaching age-appropriate and culturally-appropriate lessons that focus on English Language skill building, school readiness, and the development of soft skills.
  • Preparing a 2-4 minute performance piece in each class, or for visual art, preparing a showcase of student artwork, to be shared at graduation on August 18.
  • Regular collaboration and communication with IRC and ASTEP staff members for a cohesive camp experience.
  • Support and implementation of camp-wide behavior management techniques in the classroom.
  • Support and implementation of both ASTEP and IRC methodology and pedagogical techniques in the classroom.
  • Implementation of ASTEP evaluation tools in the classroom.
  • Full participation in ASTEP and IRC training sessions.
  • Full participation in ASTEP post-program surveys.
  • Weekly blog post to share experience with the ASTEP community.

Applicants must have experience in teaching English Language Learners, teaching in a school environment, and teaching art in culturally diverse classrooms. This Fellowship requires complete commitment and artists must be available for all training and camp days.

The Fellow must be available for the following dates:

  • ASTEP Team Training: July 1-2, 2017 (tentative)
  • RYSA Training: July 5-7, 2017 (tentative)
  • RYSA Dates: July 10 – August 18, 2017

From July 10 – August 18, the Fellow will teach six (6) hours per week and should plan to spend at least ten (10) hours per week on site.

The accepted Fellow will receive a stipend and materials/supplies budget.

This Fellowship is named after Jennifer Saltzstein Kaffenberger, 1976-2016, a loving soul who valued the arts. She inspired everyone she met with her quick wit, compassion for others and passion for the dramatic arts. Jennifer’s love for drama started early in life in Kansas City when at the age of four, her mom took her to the musical, Annie. The live stage and sound of music captured her heart, and the thrill of the theatre and her admiration for all things related to drama was a hallmark of her life.

The Jennifer Saltzstein Kaffenger Fellowship gives this unique opportunity to someone who closely models Jen’s personal values and skill set and ensures newly arrived refugee youth will experience the transforming power of the arts, much as the arts impacted Jen’s life.

If you are interested in applying for the Fellowship, please complete the ASTEP Volunteer Artist Application, making note that you would like to be considered for the Fellowship.

** Email Aaron Rossini at aaron@asteponline.org or give us a ring at 212.921.1227 to learn more!

Deadline to apply is: April 15, 2017




Bring the power of the arts to refugee youth

For our an eighth consecutive summer, ASTEP is teaming up with the Refugee Youth Summer Academy, a 6-week summer camp that focuses on welcoming newly arrived refugee youth to their new life in NYC and giving them the tools that they need to thrive. A team of 16 ASTEP Teaching Artists will lead performing and visual arts classes to develop skills for 120-130 refugee youth, including school readiness, comfort with the English language, increased coping skills and a greater sense of community in their new home.

Tentative Program Dates: July 10 – August 18, 2017
Tentative ASTEP Team Training: July 1-2, 2017 
Tentative RYSA Training: July 5-7, 2017 
Application deadline: April 15, 2017
Location: New York City
Who: All artists! We need a diverse team and hope that you are a part of it!

** Email Aaron Rossini at aaron@asteponline.org or give us a ring at 212.921.1227 to learn more!

“ASTEP’s arts classes at RYSA give children who may be struggling with academics the opportunity to shine, build their confidence, and develop a positive outlook towards school.”
— Courtney Liu, Upper School Dance Teacher, ASTEP Volunteer Artist 2016






Be the Change You Want to See in 2017

Step outside of your comfort zone and make a difference in the world this year with ASTEP. This spring, we are sending a team of Volunteer Artists to Shanti Bhavan Children’s Project in Southern India to deliver a multi-week arts camp that focuses on visual and performing arts including music, filmmaking, dance, and musical theatre.

ASTEP believes poverty is defined by a lack of choice. Our team of Teaching Artists, along with the faculty and staff at Shanti Bhavan, use their art, their passion, and their talents to teach students that they have the power to make choices in their lives.

We will show our students that their ideas have value and that they are capable of making positive transformations in their country, their communities, and their world. By bringing arts education and application to these students from India’s lowest castes, we are able to provide them with the space and time to practice communication, collaboration, empathy, and creativity: all skills necessary to live and thrive in a world where their voices matter.

Dates: May 24 – June 12
Application deadline: February 25, 2017 (EXTENDED)
Location: Shanti Bhavan Children’s Project just outside of Bangalore
Who: All artists! We need a diverse team and hope that you are a part of it!

** Room and board is provided by ASTEP and Shanti Bhavan for all Volunteer Artists
** Email Aaron Rossini at aaron@asteponline.org or give us a ring at 212.921.1227 to learn more!

 

“One of the best things about volunteering at SB was waking up every morning and starting my day with the preschoolers. They are so playful, smart, and filled with smiles; they overwhelmed me with joy every single day. ”
–Kaila Galinat, ASTEP Volunteer Teaching Artist

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