A Letter to StART the School Year from YA President & CEO Michele Russo

Dear Arts Advocates:

Energized learning. Joyful expression. Authentic artistry and creativity.

When a YA teaching artist enters a school, the energy in the room shines bright. The space feels transformed as students are immersed in an artist’s studio or a performance hall. The students’ creative voice is given a platform and a new art form, culture or tradition is explored. The unique creativity of each student, teacher and artist are all rays of the same vibrant sun.

You may have noticed our new logo–we are excited to share it with you! It reflects our commitment to the energy and vibrancy of arts education, the creativity of our artists and participants, and the authentic “’handmade” nature of our work. Furthermore it honors the rich history and dynamic connection with our Young Audiences network across the country.

YA Assembly Artist Group Samba to Salsa engaging with students through call and response.

For over 47 years, Young Audiences Arts for Learning has passionately worked towards our mission: to inspire young people and expand their learning through the arts.  We have grown and evolved to embrace workshop and residency work as a critical means of engaging students in the arts and improving their learning. We’ve embraced diverse arts programming as an essential component of children’s education and global understanding. We’ve developed professional learning programs as a means of extending the impact of our work with students.

Looking towards the future of arts education, we continue to grow and learn as we further embrace diversity, equity and inclusion as core values. Our innovative, customized programs are improving school climate and culture. Our artists are leading the region in developing ways to integrate and infuse arts with other learning goals. And our programs are addressing serious concerns, such as childhood nutrition, absenteeism and religious based bullying.

We couldn’t do it without the partnership and collaboration of talented teaching artists, passionate educators, dedicated arts advocates and devoted school volunteers. Thank you for being a partner with Young Audiences Arts for Learning. We can’t wait to work with you!


Image of Michele Russo's Signature




Michele Russo

YA President & CEO