2nd Annual YoungArts Awareness Day Set for 9/24

The National YoungArts Foundation (YoungArts) today announces the second annual YoungArts Awareness Day, a national campaign recognizing the organization's impact on thousands of emerging artists with a call-to-action for future generations. Slated for Thursday, September 24, 2015, this year's events will take place on the heels of National Arts in Education Week to emphasize the growing need for programs that foster development, provide access to financial rewards, and present the arts as a viable career path-especially as schools are rapidly eliminating the arts within their curricula.

YoungArts Awareness Day will be celebrated through a series of public events in New York, Miami and Los Angeles. The initiative aims to show that #BecauseOf YoungArts, artists ages 15 to 18 years are able to take the next steps toward achieving their goals and building a strong professional network including award-winning and acclaimed alumni, such as Doug Aitken, Conrad Tao, Desmond Richardson and Kerry Washington, among other notable figures.

"Through YoungArts Awareness Day we hope to activate the public and our more than 20,000 YoungArts alumni to reach young artists in every corner of this country and make sure they know that we are here to support their dreams of becoming a professional artist," said Lisa Leone, Vice President of Artistic Programs for YoungArts. "We want to show them that being an artist is a worthwhile and fulfilling career path, and that we will guide and mentor them to help reach their fullest potential."

The YoungArts network, including thousands of professional artists, master teachers, parents and aspiring artists, will take to social media to share their personal YoungArts stories and discuss why the arts are important using the hashtags #BecauseOf and #KeepArtsAlive. Events aim to inspire young artists (between the ages of 15 and 18 or in high school grades 10-12) to apply to become a part of the 35th Anniversary Class of YoungArts Winners at youngarts.org/apply through October 16, 2015.

YoungArts Awareness Day Events
YoungArts Awareness Day events in New York City will feature Andrew Rannells (1997 YoungArts Winner in Theater), Zuzanna Szadkowski (1997 YoungArts Winner in Theater and U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts), and Tony Yazbeck (1997 YoungArts Winner in Theater) at the helm of a dynamic Broadway showcase. In Los Angeles, Black Gatsby (D'Angelo Lacy) (2005 YoungArts Winner in Theater) will direct a rock/pop concert starring India Carney (2011 YoungArts Winner in Theater, Voice and U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts); and in Miami, where YoungArts is headquartered, a selection of Daniel Arsham's (1999 YoungArts Winner in Visual Arts) work-curated by Los Angeles County Museum of Art Department Head and Curator of Contemporary Art Franklin Sirmans-will open to the public in conjunction with a YoungArts Salon featuring Arsham and Sirmans in conversation about the exhibition. The first of an exciting season of programming, the YoungArts Salon series is sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. For more information, visit youngarts.org/youngarts-awareness-day.

Additional Ways to Get Involved
Additional initiatives include a live Q&A hosted by Josh Groban (1999 YoungArts Winner in Theater) about arts education and his own Find Your Light Foundation on the YoungArts Facebook page starting at 3pm.

The public can also help YoungArts keep the arts alive by texting "Give 2924" to 80088 to make a $10 donation in honor of YoungArts Awareness Day.



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