Frequently Asked Questions


What is a Teaching Artist?

Young Audiences teaching artists provide students with direct access to arts experiences they may not otherwise have access to. These unique opportunities include sharing forms of self-expression, artistic techniques, mastery of art forms, ties between the arts and other curriculum areas, and insight into a professional artist’s life.


How do I book a program?

Scheduling: Some artists have limited availability due to rehearsal and touring schedules. Reserve your programs early to secure the artists and dates of your choice. For questions, additional information, or to schedule a program, please call the Young Audiences office at (716) 881-0917, Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, use our email contact form. Should inclement weather or illness prohibit the artists from performing a scheduled program, Young Audiences reserves the right to reschedule. Ensemble members may be subject to change.

Pricing: The program prices published in the catalog and on this site reflect the cost of two performances or workshops, back-to-back, unless otherwise indicated. Travel fees and cartage costs are included in the price of all non-union and traveling performers unless otherwise indicated. Where noted, Musician Union Local 92 fee guidelines are used to calculate travel fees for union groups traveling outside of the Local’s jurisdiction (i.e., immediate Buffalo area). This fee will be added to the regular program price. Funding may be available to subsidize Young Audiences Programs. Please contact our office for details.


What is the difference between a Residency, a Workshop, and an Assembly? 

For most programs a curriculum guide with artist biographies, pre- and post-performance classroom activities for curriculum integration and coordinating Learning Standards for each program is forwarded to the school upon confirmation of program date and time.

Back-to-Back Performances

Commonly termed “assembly program,” a performance is usually a presentation of the art form to a large group of students. A back-to-back performance consists of two performances of the same program with a fifteen-minute interval for audience change.

Length: 40 – 45 minutes per individual performance

Size: 100 – 300 students per individual performance, as indicated.

Single performances may be scheduled; however, some restrictions may apply. Contact the office for prices.


Most artists are available for student workshops. Some workshops expand on the material presented in a performance in a classroom setting. The majorities of Young Audiences’ workshops stand on their own and are not preceded by a performance. Workshops are always booked back-to-back, which is reflected in the listed rate. These workshops can be tailored to meet each school’s individual requirements.

Length: 40 – 45 minutes unless otherwise indicated.


Residencies are longer term, sometimes multi-arts experiences designed around the needs of our partners. A number of artists have pre-designed residencies. Our staff and artists will also work with you and your colleagues to design a 3 or more session program that suits your needs.


How many teaching artists do you work with? 

Currently, Young Audiences works with 100 artists reaching 62,000 children in over 100 schools, after school, community, and cultural centers through 315 performances, 1,280 workshops, 50 residencies, and 14 year-long and summer partnerships.


What kind of background does a Teaching Artist have?

Our teaching artists come from all kinds of backgrounds. The common theme is that they are all experts in their field, and they all have a passion for sharing their expertise with young people in a way that is accessible. When an artist applies to become a teaching artist, they are carefully interviewed, their work reviewed, and a sample lesson plan prepared and given – or we visit them working as teaching artists booked privately. Once a teaching artist on our roster, we continue to monitor their work, coach them with professional development, and provide them with the tools to be the best artists working with our young people.


How do I apply to become a Teaching Artist? 

We bring new artists onto our roster who are committed to inspiring young people. We review applications annually between February and March. Click here to check upcoming deadlines and opportunities. Young Audiences carefully reviews the quality of an artist’s work prior to considering additions to our roster. The first step is a written application that includes a professional history, work samples, and a program proposal. Based on this application, artists who meet Young Audiences programming needs will meet with Young Audiences staff and audition their program in a school setting. We often provide training opportunities and may require participation in some level training for artists new to Young Audiences.


What is Arts Partners for Learning (APL)?

Managed by Young Audiences, APL is a regional partnership that was formed in 2011 with support from the Fund for the Arts, John R. Oishei Foundation, and Young Audiences, Inc. with the vision to create opportunities for arts and cultural organizations and professional artists to work with schools and ultimately improve the educational outcomes for children. Led by a Leadership Team composed of leaders from the arts, cultural, education, and philanthropic sectors of Western New York, APL aims to bring arts and cultural programs to schools that are standards-based and integrated throughout the curriculum.


Can I attend a professional development workshop? 

Depending on your career and needs we offer a variety of professional development opportunities for teachers and artists throughout the year. Click through here to download a printable pdf compilation of some of our outstanding professional development programs. Also, APL hosts professional development events for partners and others seeking best practices from across the country to improve the educational outcomes for students.


Why should I give to Young Audiences? What does Young Audiences do with the money it receives? 

Your support will help us provide desperately needed arts enrichment programs to your throughout Western New York. Click here to become a monthly contributor or to give a one-time gift to Young Audiences, and change lives through the arts.

There are other ways to be a part of Young Audiences . . .

Get involved with Young Audiences through attending our events, applying to becoming a part of our team, learning about how to become one of our teaching artist, and signing up to receive our newsletters. And remember, your word is golden. Tell your friends, your child’s teachers, your PTA, and your community leaders about us. We look forward to being a part of YOUR community.


Where does Young Audiences get its major funding from? 

Young Audiences’ mission is made possible by private and public support including major support from the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library, The Cameron and Jane Baird Foundation, Children’s Guild Foundation, City of Buffalo, Erie County, Erie County Youth Services, Fund for the Arts, General Mills Foundation, John R. Oishei Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, New York Council for the Humanities, New York State Council on the Arts, Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation, Young Audiences, Inc., and Buffalo City Council Members Pridgen, Franczyk, LoCurto, and Rivera.