A Young Artists' Perspective

 

YoungArts Week 2012 / Miami, FL 

By Karissa Royster

 

This past January, I was blessed with the wonderful opportunity of participating in YoungArts Week 2012 in Miami, Florida. YoungArts was founded alongside the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts (NFAA) in 1981 by Ted and Lin Arison in order to fulfill the “desperate need in the United States for an organization that would encourage and validate young artists”. YoungArts recognizes emerging talent in nine disciplines – photography, music, dance, cinematic arts, jazz, voice, writing, visual arts, and theater – and selects a hand-full of young artists to participate in a week of master classes, interdisciplinary workshops, performances, exhibitions, and artistically enriching experiences. This past year, over 5,000 15 to 18 year old artists applied and 152 were selected to participate in YoungArts Week in Miami.

 

Upon arriving in Miami on January 8th, there was automatically a sense of unison and family as fellow YoungArts winners and alumni greeted arriving participants at Miami International Airport and escorted us to the resort. That evening, we were treated to an eclectic performance by a few of our RAs which included wonderful jazz music and an elegant opera singer. Although it was already breathtaking to acquaint myself with so many talented people my age from so many different places in the United States, what truly opened my eyes to the reality of my situation was the Voice and Jazz Performance on Monday evening at the New World Center. I was aware that the people around me were deserving of recognition simply because of their presence at YoungArts Week. However, when the first girl walked up to the microphone in a dazzling evening gown and sang her first note, I was completely floored. By the end of the show that night, I was in a complete daze of disbelief and amazement. It was a great awakening to the indescribable series of events that I would experience later that week.  READ MORE