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vol.7 issue 8 // NOVEMBER
NYC NON-PROFIT “ARTS TO GROW” GIVES TOTS A CHANCE TO EXPLORE THEIR CREATIVITY. THE GLUE NETWORK’S AMBITIOUS BRIDGE AROUND THE WORLD.
KIDS WORLDWIDE GET FREE SHOES
YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL
PUBLIC ART TO INSPIRE THE UNINSPIRED.
NYC based non-profit organization “Arts to Grow” provides children access to visual, literary and performing arts.
The bridge project aims to provide the means for individuals to connect worldwide.
A buy-one-give-one shoe company founded by Blake Mycoskie.
YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL
A global, public art effort to spread a simple and positive message: You are beautiful.
iration heatre Artist Draws Inspildren. NYC T From Teaching Inner-City Ch By Jackie O’Neal
Patricia Runcie is a teaching artist with Arts to Grow, a New Jersey based non-profit that provides inner-city children in New York exposure to the visual, literary and performing arts by partnering with local public schools and community-based organizations.
s uncertain economic times continue to impact arts related prog rams in N YC, in Brookly n at IS 171,children are busy at work writing an orig inal theatre production thanks to Arts To Grow that is focused on enriching the lives of .inner-city school children ages 5-18. The arts have always been integ ral in enhancing the learning process in academic subjects. Arts To Grow sends teaching artists like Patricia Runcie into the
public schools to bring creativity and excitement that would otherwise be absent. A musician friend prompted Patricia to help him out with a production. “A friend of mine who was a teaching artist needed some assistance working on a musical with 3-5 g raders in an after school set ting. I had previously taught theatre camps during the summer at various professional summer stock theatres, and I thought this would be a rewarding way to supplement my income from acting and directing,” she said.
W hen people observe Patricia in the classroom, they may assume she is a certif ied teacher, but she is clear the inf luence she brings with her are distinct from those of a reg ular teacher. “W hat separates me from a certif ied teacher is that I am a professional artist; meaning I not only have a foot in ‘academia’ but I practice what I preach. I am able to bring examples from my ow n personal stage experiences, directly into my classroom. On many occasions I am going right from class to a rehearsal or performance, which is g reat to share with my children. I can g ive them fresh f irst hand accounts of exactly what we are working on. They are performing, and I am performing. We are connected that way. In those moments we become ‘colleag ues’ sharing war stories. Others have asked Patricia to describe her q ualif ications and training, and she is eager to share her insight, as well as pride in her work. “I believe you need a deg ree in the discipline you are teaching, professional working experience in the discipline you are teaching, and you need to show an aptitude for working with children. W hen I tell people I am a teaching artist, I always receive interested and positive responses. I am proud to say what I do, “ she said. Patricia’s ty pical day as a teaching artist is a f lurry of activity, and so she schedules her ow n “prep” time to get prepared for the busy day ahead. The structure of the class includes checking in with the students, and set ting the day’s agenda. She realizes young children need room to ventilate about things, and she addresses that need. “I g ive them each a turn to ‘get something of f their chest’— as actors we need to leave our troubles at the door, so to speak, so I g ive them a chance to air their daily g rievance, in preparation to work,” she said. After the children have set tled in, a series trust within the g roup. “Also, as we move on in the class, the exercises get more specif ic to the story we are telling. Exercises also focus on stage presence, stage movement, telling the story through behavior and gesture, creating character and relationships,” she said. Rehearsal includes runthroughs of the project at hand, “Aq ua Net,” and adaptation of the musical “Hairspray.” During rehearsal, we stage the show, rehearse, f ix what needs f ixing, and run through it again. If time allows, we play a short game as a reward for hard work . And f inally, the children participate in a closing circle -where we come together as a g roup for a class cheer celebrating our ensemble and good work,” she said. That is special for them, and something they wouldn’t necessarily get from another teacher. Also, as young artists, they can see what it is to truly ‘work’ in the f ield. I believe that in today’s world, children are ‘fame’ oriented and see that as the be all, end all of success. It’s important for them to see that one can have a working, ‘realistic’ career in the arts,” she said. A s a teaching artist in the public schools, Patricia will be the f irst to admit the experience is f ull of both highs and lows, and yet she takes on a healthy perspective about it, and embraces the highs and lows as a way to g row. “It’s always a high to see students perform and feel good about themselves. Or in class, if they overcome an obstacle or g row as an artist,
the way their face beams when they k now they’ve accomplished something is always so heartwarming. There are lows on days when the class, for whatever reason--sunny day, too much sugar-- just can’t focus. It can be daunting when you feel like you just can’t inspire them. But that’s also the challenge, and the f un, because often on the f ly, you f ind out ‘tricks’ that can bring them back to you. And
then you’re that much stronger because you have that in your arsenal,” she said. Life outside of the classroom has also been hectic for Patricia. Apart from planning her wedding to a fellow actor, (contd.) she will also be performing and producing. “Planning a wedding feels like producing my (contd.)
of breathing, diction, and voice warm-ups follow along with ensemble exercises which include theatre games that according to Runcie,help maintain a sense of
“I really like it here, everyone has f un and we get to make art! - Jania Montes
ow n show-- which it kind of is! We are planning the wedding for this time next year. Speaking of producing, my theatre company, Reg roup Theatre, has been on a hiatus for a year and a half, but plans are in the works to resurrect it, f inally. And I have two plays coming up this summer,
‘Play it Again, Sam’ and ‘Crimes of the Heart,” she said. W hen asked what she would say to someone embarking on becoming a teaching artist, Patricia is honest that the job is demanding. “ I would say its an incredibly rewarding experience
and a g reat way to supplement your artistic career. However, I would caution that it’s a lot of work…more than just a ‘day job’…you need to have a commitment to children, and patience,” she said.
The greenest family of notebooks.
Patricia Runcie is a teacher, director, and performer. She is a teaching artist with Arts to Grow and at PS 5, a Children's Aid Society School, in their after school prog ram. She has also been a teaching artist with The Winnipesaukee Playhouse summer theater camps as well as The Creative Movement and Arts Center in Massachuset ts. Patricia has performed and directed at many theaters including The Looking Glass Theatre, Theatre for the New City, The Theatre-Studio, (mainstage), and manhat tantheatresource. Patricia has also directed for InTouch Productions and Eyeblink Entertainment as part of their ongoing festival series. She is the co-artistic director of The Reg roup Theatre, a company commit ted to developing work by new play wrights and to encourag ing a "process not product" at titude towards the rehearsal process. Patricia is a cum laude g raduate of Boston College's Theatre Department.
Find out more @ artstogrow.org
They f it your foot like a glove but are sturdy enough for a hike, the beach or the city." A Texan who relig iously reads biog raphies of the likes of Sam Walton, Ted Turner and Richard Branson yet ends his e-mail messages, "DISCLA IMER: you will not win the rat race wearing Toms," Mycoskie had never worked in fashion. With a staf f of seven f ulltime employees (including former Trovata de-
lower," he admits. "But what we do helps us get publicity. Lots of companies g ive a percentage of their revenue to charity, but we can't f ind anyone who matches one for one." Toms already has orders from 300 stores, including Nordstrom, Urban Outf it ters and Bloomingdale's, for 41,000 pairs from its spring and summer collections, and it will be entering Australia, Japan, Canada, Spain
Founder and Chief Shoe Giver Blake Mycoskie in South America during a shoe giveaway in September of 2008.
Blake Mycoskie wanted to get away from it all. After founding and running four businesses and losing by a sliver on The Amazing Race, he escaped last January to Argentina, where he learned to sail, dance the tango and play competitive polo.
e also visited impoverished villages where few, if any, children had shoes. "I was sit ting on a f ield on a farm one day, and I had an epiphany," says Mycoskie, who had taken to wearing alpargatas--resilient, lightweight slip-on shoes with a breathable canvas top and soft leather insole traditionally worn by Argentine workers. "I said, I'm going to start a shoe company, and for every pair I sell, I'm going to g ive one pair to a kid in need." He spent the next two months meeting with shoe- and fabricmakers in Argentina and named his self-f inanced company Toms: Shoes for Tomorrow. He modeled his product after the alpargata but used brighter colors and dif ferent materials. "No one looked twice at alpargatas, but I thought they had a really cool style," says Mycoskie, 30. "I'm a fan of Vans, but they can be clunk y and sweaty. These aren't. sig ner John W hitledge), six sales reps and eight interns, he debuted a collection last June of 15 styles for men and women, as well as limited-edition artist versions. They q uickly found their way into stores like American Rag and Fred Segal in Los Angeles, where Toms is based, and Scoop in New York City. By the fall he had sold 10,000 pairs, averag ing $38 each, online and in 40 stores. So, as promised, he returned to Argentina in October with a couple of dozen volunteers to g ive away 10,000 pairs of Toms shoes along 2,200 miles of countryside. "I always thought I'd spend the f irst half of my life making money and the second half g iving it away," says Mycoskie, who calls himself not ceo but chief shoe g iver. "I never thought I could do both at the same time." Not that he's turning a prof it. "Selling online has allowed us to g row pret ty rapidly, but we're not going to make as much as another shoe company, and the marg ins are def initely and France this summer. The company will introduce a line of children's shoes called Tiny Toms in May and will unveil a pair of leather shoes in the fall. Mycoskie is planning a second shoe drop in Argentina later this year, with more to follow in Africa and A sia. He says 240 customers have told him they would pay to volunteer on shoe drops, so next year he hopes to launch a company offering $2,000 vacations consisting of two days of sightseeing and four days of volunteering. "All these other businesses and deals have been preparing me for this," he says. "I believe Toms is going to g ive away millions of shoes one day."
For more information visit tomsshoes.com
Glue Network exists to inspire and empower people to become the change they want to see in the world. Glue is an ON and OFF-line brand and community lead by cultural influencers (individuals, artists, athletes, musicians, brands and non-profits) who all share the belief that LOVE REQUIRES ACTION. The Passion
Glue, Inc. began in 2005 with a fundraiser inspired by the thousands of Africans living in Nkhoma, Malawi, who are both directly and indirectly affected by poverty, the drought and the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The 2005 Hurricane Katrina relief effort showed evidence that people are willing to reach out and stretch their own funds when the need was brought closer to home. The challenge was to get people to care about those in need who are far removed
from their daily lives. The solution was creating a party with a purpose to draw them in, inspire conversation, and provide a starting place for a much bigger community based on caring. The fundraiser was a success. The San Diego community was joined by well-known artists, musicians, and brands with a common passion and purpose for helping those less fortunate. The amazing response showed many are not only willing to help, but looking for opportunities to do so. Dreams were formed of an ongoing network created for the sole purpose of helping and connecting people who aspire to make a difference. The Purpose
act and make a difference. Simply put, the mission is to connect people to make a difference.
thegluenetwork.com is a cooperative, transparent, online community of passionate, purpose-driven people. thegluenetwork.com connects non-profit organizations, brands, bands, musicians, fans, athletes, artists and young people all over the world who want to, and can make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate. thegluenetwork.com changes the way people give of themselves, their talents and their resources – and in so doing, thegluenetwork.com helps people change their own lives.
Accelerating the shift from ME to WE.
thegluenetwork.com is on a mission to provide a network, a venue, the technology, the credibility, the content and the choices to enable individuals, causes and corporations to plug in, connect,
The intention behind this project is to reach beyond ourselves as individuals to make a difference by creating moments of positive self realization. We're just attempting to make the world a little better. Intention is the most important aspect of the Y Are Beauou tiful project in its idea of purity. Nothing is sacred. E verything that has a perceived value becomes commodified. We work extremely hard that this message is received as a simple act of kindness, and nothing more. Advertising elicits a response to buy, where this project elicits a response to do something. The attempt with Y Are ou Beautiful is to create activism instead of consumerism. Y Are Beautiful uses the medium of advertising and ou commercialization to spread a positive message. Projects like these make a difference in the world by catching us in the midst of daily life and creating moments of positive self realization. The goal of this project is to spread the message to as many individuals, and in as many places as possible, simply reminding them of their beauty. We work hard to keep this project open and accessible to everyone, making sure we keep our stickers free. We have printed over 500,000 stickers and given them all away at no charge. We believe the strength behind this project is that it sells nothing behind it’s message. It’s free and for you. If you feel strongly enough about this campaign, and are
Y Are Beautiful is a simple, powerful statement which is ou incorporated into the over absorption of mass media and lifestyles that are wrapped in consumer culture.
looking for a way to help donating money will help insure the stickers stay free. It also gives us the ability to continue to work on projects, collaborating with artists all over the world. If you have no money to donate, make your own Y Are Beautiful ou piece, and put it up for others to see. Pass it on. This is the true nature of the message.
The new G100. Made from 100% post-consumer materials. The first of its kind.