Teaching artists who were once affiliated with the now-defunct Young Audiences of Rochester banded together in 2018 as Teaching Artists ROC to bring awareness to their continuing interest in working with educators and students.
“We know that the need for arts-in-education continues as well,” said Larry Moss, artistic director of Airigami and the driving force behind TAROC. “The ability of these programs to improve academic achievement, attendance, and life and social skills such as decision-making, collaboration and taking responsibility is well documented.”
“The arts help children to see themselves as ‘shining ones,’ regardless of what other circumstances may tell them about themselves or their life situations,” storyteller Almeta Whitis said. “An accomplished teaching artist opens them up to understanding the truth of their potential and the power hidden in every living being, in our natural environment and within their own unique, beautiful selves.”
Realizing that educators were looking for a one-stop-shop replacement, TAROC debuted its direct-booking website (teachingartistsroc.com) and held its first YAR-style showcase for educators at School of the Arts in September 2018. On March 16, the organization will present a follow-up showcase from 3 to 7 p.m. in the Eisenhart Auditorium at Rochester Museum & Science Center, 657 East Ave.
Teaching artists from Greater Rochester will offer information, displays and performance excerpts, including Airigami, Whitis, Annette Ramos, Anthony Padilla (Conga Mania, Tumbao Band), Dave “Bippy” Boyer, Daystar Dance, DEEP Arts (formerly Rochester Children’s Theatre), Doug Rougeux (BubbleMan), In Jest with Nels Ross, Martha Schermerhorn, Nancy Bryan, PUSH Physical Theatre, Ted Canning Steel Drums, Ted Baumhauer, and Professor Hughson.
Admission is free and open to anyone who has interest in school programming. Children accompanied by parents are welcome. Each adult attendee will automatically be entered for a chance to win a free presentation, performance or workshop for their school or organization from an artist on the TAROC roster. The winner will choose from a selection of programs offered by TAROC artists.
“This event will be so important for teaching artists to create and strengthen relationships with educators from around the region and identify opportunities for new partnerships that can benefit students,” said Annette Jiménez Gleason, program officer for vitality at the Community Foundation. “Enhancing access to the arts in more schools has the potential to transform the lives of students and make our communities more vibrant.”