Young Arts Ambassadors

by Jonah Barrett for OLY ARTS

The Young Arts Ambassadors program (YAA) begins its third successive year this fall, and the window for new applicants is closing fast. High school sophomores, juniors and seniors are encouraged to apply for this program, with applications due Oct. 1. The program, which accepts a maximum of 20 students, encourages community involvement and art exposure among the youth of Olympia. YAA is the brainchild of Jill Barnes, executive director of The Washington Center of the Performing Arts (WCPA).

The program began in 2014, with Vanessa Postil serving as YAA coordinator. Students may expect to gain experience in leadership, workforce and life skills while developing a sense of the importance of the arts by volunteering in the art world. To apply, they’ll need a completed application form, school transcripts, two recommendations, a 300-word personal essay and, if under 18, parental permission.

The majority of Young Arts Ambassadors’ work will culminate in a showcase, which students will help plan from October to May. A presentation of both performance and visual art, this showcase highlights communication, empowerment and participation. Students will be invited to perform, host or work behind the scenes for the event. They will also have the chance to attend workshops, meetings and WCPA shows.

“Every month we hold a workshop in a different genre of the arts,” said Postil. “Our first workshop will be improv comedy. Over the months we will explore technical theater, visual and media art, movement and dance, teaching artists and other aspects of the arts.”

What: Young Artists Ambassador Program

Where: Washington Center for the Performing Arts,
512 Washington St. SE, Olympia

When: first meeting 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8

How much: free

Learn more: 360-753-8585 ext. 104 |