Monday, January 14, 2008

Native Voices at the Autry

 Native Voices at the Autry

Date: Jan 10, 2008 4:45 PM
Subject: View "Our Voices . . . Our Stories" on our page
Body: We've added the mini-documentary featuring our Young Native Voices: Theater Education Project to our page and we hope to see you at the free YoungNative Voices Festival on Saturday, January 26 at 2pm.

The ever-growing Young Native Voices Theater Education Project, now in its seventh year, inspires young Native Americans to explore their rich history and share personal experiences through the art of playwriting. This year’s program is the biggest yet, with fifteen participants ranging in age from nine to eighteen. The new plays will be read at the Young Native Voices Festival by professional Native American actors in a free performance on Saturday, January 26, at 2 p.m.

Sponsored by Native Voices at the Autry, the program consists of six classes over the course of three weekends in January. It pairs up the participants with theater professionals to teach them the basics of play development. The workshop focuses on such topics as writing for the stage, character development, and writing from personal experience, culminating in the debut of the students’ powerful and compelling scenes, stories, and monologues.

Added this year is an exciting musical element, which combines traditional Native American music with contemporary orchestral and choral music by high school–age Native American composers who are part of the Composer Apprentice National Outreach Endeavor (CANOE) of the First Nations Composers Initiative. Through collaboration between the theater and music programs, teenage playwrights and composers gain the confidence and inspiration to create performance art pieces. The opportunity to compose these works at a young age sets the groundwork for them to thrive as artists and writers well into adulthood.

In addition, Young Native Voices collaborates with local community partners such as the Southern California Indian Center, Central High School in Los Angeles, United American Indian Involvement, and the Torres-Martinez Tribal TANF, all of whom send their youths to participate.

“This festival is a forum for the voices of talented Native American youths from all over Southern California,” said Young Native Voices National Coordinator Bryan Davidson. “They come together to tell their stories, which is a powerful way to bring people together and increase understanding.”

Reservations for the Saturday performance are requested. Please call 323.667.2000, ext. 354, or e-mail your reservation to with “Reservations” in the subject line.

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