Young people engage in the arts with assembly programs and workshops

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Young Audiences teaching artists specialize in providing the highest quality assembly programs and workshops. Each assembly program engages 25 – 300 young people in creative thinking and learning through a variety of art forms. Assembly programs and workshops open opportunities for students to experience, understand, and create in the art form, as well as connect… Read more »

Sacred Art of Mandalas

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Creating radial designs called mandalas, students explore visual rhythm and pattern. These radial designs can be done in sand, paint, and colored pencils, stamped or as arrangements and photographed.


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RussoYoung Audiences workshops allow students to work closely with a professional artist in an interactive, hands-on environment. Programs are 45 minutes and are offered as back-to-back (repeating) workshops to serve more than one classroom. Workshops can also be added to follow an assembly program, reinforcing its content.

Inspire student writing projects through creative journaling projects or explore the local history of the Erie Canal and Underground Railroad; the possibilities are endless. Click through here to see all of our workshop programs.   Often, it makes sense to have artists come back for several visits, making your workshop a residency.  Click through here to learn more about our residencies.

You may select a workshop to work on specific skills you would like your students to develop.  Below are some examples of what these skills might be.

Browse workshops by art form below.

Custom Search
Our website makes it easy to find a workshop based on grade level, subject matter, and/or art form.
Click here to search our catalog.

Need help? Call our office (716.881.0917) and we can walk you through a search over the phone.


Images on this page: Jen Russo (top image) creates Mandalas with kindergarten students of H.O. Brumsted Elementary School.  Annette Daniels-Taylor (bottom image) leads an Underground Railroad in Western New York poetry workshop at BPS Lovejoy Discovery School #43.

Public Programs

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YOUNG AUDIENCES CREATIVE FAMILY EVENTS — Join us in celebrating 50 years of service to WNY, all year long

Young Audiences is pleased to host and participate in a wide-range of community events that promote creative learning through the arts. These fun community activities feature interactive workshops and performances and are presented free of charge. 




July 31, 11:00am, 12:00pm WednesdayJen Russo workshop Sacred Art of Mandalas at Explore & More Children’s Museum

August 2, 6:00pm FridayMiche Fambro performing Finding Your Own Voice at the Albright Knox Art Gallery for M&T First Friday

August 4, 1:30pm SundayDifferential Flava Crew performing Why Break Dance? at Chalkfest, 500 block of Main Street, downtown Buffalo

August 8, 11:00pm ThursdaySusan Rozler performing Mama Earth’s Kitchen Show Band at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site for their Teddy Bear Picnic

August 16, 10:30am FridayElizabeth Clark Dance Ensemble performing A Movement Portrait of 1812 at Buffalo History Museum for M&T Third Friday

August 24 & 25, Saturday & Sunday – Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts, come visit us at our information table on Cultural Row

September 6, 5:30pm FridaytheatreFiguren performing Ferdinand at the Albright Knox Art Gallery for M&T First Friday

October 4, 5:30pm FridayDefiant Monkey performing All Together Now at the Albright Knox Art Gallery for M&T First Friday

Professional Development

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“I found inspiration and hope! Recognition in the power of art and allowing student voices to shine!” –Participant, 2010 Arts Abilities Conference

We offer a variety of professional development opportunities for teachers and artists throughout the year, including our Patricia Cotsen Arts Abilities Conference.  The next time this conference will take place is Fall 2013.

Through the community wide Arts Partners for Learning, professional development and networking opportunities for educators, artists, and cultural educators will be provided.  Click through here to learn more.

We will be offering a series of professional development opportunities for educators and artists throughout the year.

If you are a teaching artist, afterschool provider, or educator looking to participate in one of Young Audiences WNY’s upcoming professional development events please e-mail Education Associate, Annette Daniels-Taylor at

Click through here to download a printable pdf compilation of some of our outstanding professional development programs.

We can also bring the professional development to you.

Consider bringing an artist in to illustrate how the arts may expand teaching practices and learning across curriculum. Workshops are for classroom teachers as well as arts specialists and can enhance instruction in non-arts subjects such as English or Social Studies or offer in-depth exploration of an art form for art teachers. Contact our office to discuss creating a customized program.

Professional development programs to bring into your school or workplace:

Art of Collage or Portfolio Development with Gerald Mead

Blogging with Nancy J. Parisi

Build Net Mirth in the Workplace with In Jest with Nels Ross Cremean

Civic Engagement or Visioning Power of Mandalas or Essence of Chinese Art with Manya Fabiniak

Communication Through Music with Melissa Kate Project

Dance Workshop with Elizabeth Clark Dance Ensemble

Digital Media and Hip Hop Workshops with IMAGE Urban Arts

Drumming with Miriam Minkoff

Enhanced Communication Through Improvisation Workshop with Defiant Monkey

Hands on Arts with Kristen Crosson

Hip-Hop Dancing  or Salsa Dancing with Sarah Haykel

Images and Text with Bruce Adams

Japanese Arts workshops with Kyoko Roszmann

Jazz It Up! with Reynold Scott

Kite Making with Meg Albers

Localizing Culture, Ergonomics: Taking Care of Our Bodies, or Movement, Breathing, and the Alexander Technique with Ellen Melamed

Memoirs and Performance with Annette Daniels-Taylor

Poet’s Intensive with Melissa Kate

Save the Teacher! with Jen Russo

Slam Poetry with Gayle Danley

Storytelling and Writing with Lorna Czarnota

Theater Workshop with PUSH Physical Theatre

Writing Workshop or Yoga and Poetry with Sherry Robbins

Pictured above: Ellen Melamed presents to WNY educators about the valuable benefits of The Alexander Technique.


Breaking Down Barriers: 4th Annual Patricia Cotsen Arts Abilities Conference from Young Audiences on Vimeo.

Long-term residencies provide opportunities for life skills and core-curriculum development

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Young Audiences strives to deepen the young person’s learning through the arts with long-term and multi-year residency programs.   Residencies are a series of workshops, often with an end-goal in mind, through which teaching artists engage with smaller groups of young people for longer periods of time.   Residencies allow students the opportunity to experience,… Read more »

Waterfront and Holland Elementary Full School Partnerships

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  Young Audiences has partnered with Waterfront since 2002. Most recently, we have been brought in by Waterfront Elementary and Buffalo Public Schools as a certified vendor to support their 3-year School Improvement Grant (SIG) goals. This year’s SIG programming includes three full grade residencies: Phonics Program with Jenny May for Kindergarten, Building Steam with… Read more »

Save the Teacher!

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Experienced art educator and yoga teacher Jen Russo will lead teachers through a fun and physical process that will culminate with a Mandala Painting.

Hands on Arts

Posted by & filed under Ensemble, Visual Art.

Art therapist Kristen Crosson uses a variety of creative projects to encourage self-expression and build self-esteem. Possible arts experiences include mask making, murals, pastel portraits, mandala d

Anti-Bullying & Character Education

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Help students understand the importance of respect, diversity and dignity

MandalaHelp prevent bullying from occurring by creating a positive school environment and ensuring children a safe place to learn. Through Young Audiences arts integrated programming, build confidence and learn fun and exciting ways to negotiate bullying. Students may role-play and work through difficult situations and learn self-expression through the many workshops and performances offered from grades K-12.

A growing body of evidence suggests that arts learning and arts integration help develop cognitive skills needed for academic success, as well as promote the social and emotional strengths that lead to positive behaviors. Learning through the arts helps students to see new perspectives and make connections. Learning in the arts requires complex analysis and judgement and contributes to self-awareness and self-esteem and provides opportunities for collaboration. Our programs help build a positive community within your school.

Custom Search
Our website makes it easy to find a performance based on grade level, subject matter, and/or art form.
Click here to search our catalog

Need help? Call our office (716.881.0917) and we can walk you through a search over the phone.


About Young Audiences of Western New York

Young Audiences presents professional artists who engage young people in creative learning through the arts. It is our mission is to make the arts a part of young people’s lives in order to enhance their development as creative and productive human beings.

Whether it’s a schoolwide assembly performance or a hands-on workshop for 20-30 students, we can help you achieve your district’s curricular goals with high-level, artistic learning experiences. Our long-term arts residencies can be designed to suit your students’ needs. The wide range of programs reinforce core curriculum – including math, science, and social studies – and are designed to build 21st century life skills such as problem-solving, creativity, and self-awareness.
Art forms include many genres of music, multi-media arts, theater, dance, and visual and literary arts. Click here to learn more.