by Amy Downing, Teaching Artist
Youth Arts Festival 2011 Featured School – Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders
I, along with Jenn Hartmann of the University of Texas’ Drama and Theatre for Youth Program have been meeting with the girls at Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders. This semester the girls have been composing music and writing monologues and poems about the challenges of friendship.
Last semester the girls wrote a piece on self-esteem and how it affects all aspects of their lives. They discovered that their body-image, school, family and social lives were all touched by the issues surrounding self-esteem.
In addition to performing their piece at their school, the girls have also performed at an open-mike night at Thunderbird Coffee and recently sang back up for Sara Hickman for Theatre Action Project’s Best of Times fundraiser at the Paramount Theatre in February of this year. You can hear one of the songs they composed, Don’t Let The Pictures Fool You on YouTube by clicking here. This song explores how the media affects our self-esteem and warns young women about the dangers of chasing these unrealistic ideals.
These amazing girls will perform at TAP’s Youth Arts Festival next Saturday and present more original songs, poems, and monologues. Their piece, What it’s Worth follows five girl’s struggles with friendships. The piece highlights the girl’s struggle with issues such as why friendships are amazing, why they break up, whether a relationship is healthy, what they can do to save a friendship, and when to let a friendship go.
Join us on May 21st to see our film at Theatre Action Project’s Youth Arts Festival at the George Washington Carver History Museum, 1165 Angelina Street, Austin, TX 78702-2034 (map). The fun starts at 1 p.m. and it’s FREE!
Photo above: Sara Hickman, third from left, sings with the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders at the Sara Hickman & Friends concert in February 2011.
Photos: Carol and John Acurso.