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Showing blog posts written by Guest Blog

Speak For Yourself (Guest blog by Imad Rahman)

One of the most common logical fallacies some writers of color, or some writers of color born outside the U.S., encounter is one of representation (this is somewhat akin to the ‘You speak English very well’ conversational gambit some well-meaning strangers employ). You are automatically drafted into the position of ambassador, or spokesperson, for your entire ethnic community. You are supposed to write about them, voice their concerns, represent their emotional truths, chart their logistical realities, reveal their deepest darkest secrets, make them accessible through their flaws. In short, a personal truth is expected to become the Universal Truth. And truth, of course, is much murkier than a zero-sum game.

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It's not about my feelings

Photo by Steve Wagner

"Incendiaries" photo by Steve Wagner

I’m fortunate to be part of an artistic community that values and supports risky experimental work. By risky, I mean just that. There is a fair portion of this work that fails. It may confuse or perhaps even offend the audience. But that is what artists and innovators do, they embark on journeys often unsure of where they will end up.

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Categories: innovation, Neighborhoods, Race, Storytelling | comments

Providing safe afterschool arts & sports programming to CMSD youth (Guest Blog by Boo Geisse)

Miss Bri works on poetry with some of the 3rd graders at Mound STEM during summer programming at Mound Elementary School.

I think about safety in two ways. There’s physical safety, which includes the safety of the body, the home, and environments that lend themselves to opportunity. Physical safety is you and I working and living without injury, our children getting through school without harm. This type of safety also incorporates the space around you: your right to exist, to take up space, to participate. It’s being in an environment that allows you to do what you want to do, to pursue goals and dreams.   

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Categories: Arts and Safety, Arts Education, creative intersections, sports | comments

The Power of Learning In and Through the Arts (Guest Blog by Santina Protopapa)

Ever since I can remember, music has been an important part of my life.  Playing an instrument since kindergarten empowered me to become a leader, showed me how to collaborate with others, and provided the perfect opportunity for me to develop creative problem-solving skills.  These skills play a role in every aspect of my personal and professional life.

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Categories: Artists, Arts and Safety, Arts Education, creative intersections, Music | comments

Set the Stage for More Young People to Thrive (guest blog by Marsha Dobrzynski)

We are born learners.  

Anyone who has watched an infant grow into a toddler can attest to that.  So what goes on when we get to school?  Boredom and the subsequent conviction that school is irrelevant has led high school students to drop out at the rate of 30% nationally; as much as double that in some demographic groups and geographic areas.

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Categories: Artists, Arts Education, Best Practices, Education | comments

Why You Need A Feedback Loop (by guest blogger Darlene Montonaro)

Malcolm Gladwell, in his book Outliers,says that it takes roughly ten thousand hours of practice to achieve mastery in any field (a daunting statistic for those of us who aspire to achieve mastery in the arts).  His comments have generated someinteresting conversations,  but Daniel Goleman adds a wry sidebar to the research.  InFocus,he points out that if you keep doing something badly, or making the same mistakes over and over, even thousands of hours of practice won’t improve your craft.  In other words, your hours must be devoted to increasing your skill level – pushing your limits, tweaking your practice, and including a feedback loop that helps you recognize errors and correct them.

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Categories: evaluate, writer | comments

So, there’s cancer.

And then there is fear, terror actually.

There is anger and uncertainty and more fear…

There is the feeling of being totally out of control, of knowing nothing except despair and more fear…

And the cancer isn’t yours, it doesn’t belong to you, it belongs to your four-year-old daughter who is the light of your life and who you would die for at any moment…

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Categories: art therapy, Artists, artsandhealth, Health | comments

"I Hate This" (guest blog by David Hansen)

When my wife and I lost our first child due to preeclampsia, I took what solace I could in writing. My journals of that time express the sorrow, anxiety and anger which came from discovering how incapable we are as a society to talk about child loss, especially men. These writings soon after became the source material for my solo performance ³I Hate This (a play without the baby)². Because I am a theater artist, creating this  work was simply the most obvious way for me to communicate my grief, by  telling our story on a stage, as a play, to be produced for a theater audience.

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Categories: arts, artsandhealth, Health | comments

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