Spring has officially sprung at The Village of Arts and Humanities! We are excited and grateful to offer Spring programming in person once again. Our award-winning Village Industries program, which offers creative internship opportunities to youth ages 13–19, officially kicked off March 7.
Teens get to choose from internships in several disciplines, including music or vocal music production, fashion design, urban farming, graphic and web design, photography, ceramics, and dance. With sixteen teaching artists involved, The Village’s new director of youth programming + young adult programs, Brittany Holiday, had an excellent idea to start a master class series for the teaching artists.
The basic concept? A five-week program where our teaching artists would take turns teaching classes to the other teaching artists and staff members. For a deeper look at this new initiative and spring programming, we spoke with Brittany.
Hi Brittany, can you tell us how you came up with the idea of starting a master class series for The Village’s teaching artists?
This whole idea was the culmination of lots of group feedback and a joint effort from our Village teaching artists. After deciding to take a winter hiatus with our internship program, we all wanted to dive deeper into what more we could offer our youth. Through these conversations, I realized that many of our teaching artists had not been given the opportunity to even check out what each other does in the classroom. Solution? Let’s take each other’s classes, find more ways to collaborate across creative disciplines, and learn more about other artforms to share with our young people.
What was the feedback you received from the teaching artists and staff?
Our master classes have truly brought many teaching artists closer together. We’ve been able to share more with one another outside of the classroom and provided vulnerable spaces for our artists and staff to learn from each other, share stories, and collaborate. We also experienced so much joy, laughter, and fun lessons that our young people also get to enjoy.
Do you expect to continue these master classes in the future?
Yes! Our teachers have all expressed how much they enjoyed working with each other and even teaching adults. We plan to offer some of these master classes to community members and other youth and young adults who cannot participate in our regular programming.
Were there any specific crowd-pleasers?
All of them. Speaking for myself, I have such a deeper appreciation and connection with our teaching artists and their individual crafts. Sitting down in fashion, designing my own bag – has influenced my decisions in how I shop for clothing. When I listen to music, I find myself noticing the different patterns and calling them by name. After my ceramics class, I purchased some clay for my home. I almost have the confidence to sing again thanks to our vocal class, and I don’t even want to eat pizza unless it’s baked in our outdoor Philly Earth oven haha. These are just some examples of how special these classes were to me personally.
Can Village Industries participants expect any significant changes this spring?
Yes! We will be moving three of our internship classes over to the Civic Power Studio – photography, web/graphic design, and music production. Our students will be able to use our new music and photography studios and work from brand new computers for design. We are also bringing back dance, and interns have the opportunity to get paid to take on two classes for their internship.
What are you most looking forward to at The Village this spring?
I’m most looking forward to The Village in bloom – both figuratively and literally. I can’t wait to have young people moving around the campus and seeing both the flowers and their creativity grow.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Look out for our Summer Work Ready Program!