Young Storytellers Foundation http://www.youngstorytellers.com the official website of the Young Storytellers Foundation Tue, 21 Oct 2014 18:18:03 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Tickets & VIP Packages on sale now! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/biggestshow2014/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/biggestshow2014/#comments Wed, 24 Sep 2014 17:14:35 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4112

Our annual celebration featuring performances of scripts written by 5th grade students in our Script to Stage program by an all-star cast of actors from film & television

Your ticket purchase supports the . . . more

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Our annual celebration featuring performances of scripts written by 5th grade students in our Script to Stage program by an all-star cast of actors from film & television

Your ticket purchase supports the Young Storytellers Foundation. We bring mentors from the entertainment industry into public school classrooms to work with students one-on-one as they imagine, develop, and write their own short screenplay. At the culmination of sessions, Hollywood actors perform the students scripts on stage or film.

Our mission is to inspire children to discover the power of their own voice.


 

The Biggest Show 2014 is brought to you through the generous support of the following sponsors

and

Seth MacFarlane

Lynda & Stewart Resnick

 


Fill out my online form.


 

Special thanks to our VIP & Silent Auction Sponsors

designer8* Event Furniture Rental, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Class Pass, Writer’s Junction, Los Angeles Lakers, Jimmy Kimmel, ABC’s CASTLE, New Line Cinema, Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Sunset Marquis, Fisher Space Pen, Erica Pennings, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Broadway’s LOVE LETTERS and Paramount Pictures. 

 


Miss the Biggest Show last year? 

featuring Ed Helms, Mindy Kaling, Rashida Jones, Max Greenfield, John Cho, & the Sklar Bros.

Filmed and Edited by Subtractive

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Michelle Gonzalez http://www.youngstorytellers.com/michelle-gonzalez/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/michelle-gonzalez/#comments Tue, 23 Sep 2014 21:02:35 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4205 Favorite Movie:  Annie Hall

Favorite Book: Wicked

Name of your favorite teacher growing up: Alexis Butler – Why is she your fav? She would have to be my favorite teacher . . . more

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Favorite Movie:  Annie Hall

Favorite Book: Wicked

Name of your favorite teacher growing up: Alexis Butler – Why is she your fav? She would have to be my favorite teacher growing up because she was always there for me and always gave me the support to push me towards my dreams.

Why did you decide to volunteer as a high school mentor in our Movie Makers Program? I decided to volunteer for Young Storytellers because I have always loved helping others and being a leader and by becoming a mentor, I was able to do what I loved.

You also mentored this summer in our Script to Stage Program.  How would you compare those ?Mentoring in Script to Stage was completely different from Movie Makers. I think mentoring younger, elementary school students was surprising because their imagination is always running wild. I was always surprised to see what would happen next. With the middle school program, it took them a while to create an idea but once they got the ball rolling they too had an imagination that never stopped going.

What was the last script you mentored?  I mentored a young writer for the Culver City Free Summer Lunch program at La Ballona and the script we came up with was called “A Search for Atlantis”.

What was it about? It was about 4 friends in search of Atlantis and dealing with the obstacles of the ocean.

Is there a moment that stands out to you in your experience as a mentor?  The one moment that stood out to me while mentoring was seeing the face of the movie maker or young writer light up seeing their work come together. It gave me a sense of accomplishment and pride.

You also participated in our summer NYFA program.  What did you gain from that experience? After participating in the NYFA program I realized that the film industry was my career path and I finally learned to step out of my comfort zone. This program gave me creative confidence and a way to express myself differently.

This summer (as our Alumni Intern) you coordinated our NYFA program.  How did participating in the program shape how you helped coordinate that experience for a new batch of hopeful young film makers? I was extremely excited to find out I was going to coordinate the NYFA program this past summer. I was proud to see these students who work so hard to create something and once its put together they have this infectious smile that lights up the room. To see them experience the same emotions I did when I was in the program was amazing, I think overall I am speechless to have seen what all the students in the program created.

What would you tell others about YSF? I would tell others to mentor for YSF. Mentoring will change your life drastically. Growing up I had many mentors who shaped me to be who I am today and I am extremely grateful for that.

What advice/trick of the trade would you offer other mentors?  I would have to say the best advice to offer other mentors is to always keep an open mind, that is something that I have learned throughout my life and as a mentor.

How has YSF affect you?  Has it shaped what you want to do and how? YSF has given me more confidence to become a better leader. It has given me greater opportunities that I never thought I could have. Working with the rest of the staff and seeing how passionate every one of our Head Mentor and Mentors are about YSF programs makes me want to “grow up” like everyone I have met.

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Cadillac & GM Foundation support Young Storytellers! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/gm-foundation-supports-ysf-with-generous-grant/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/gm-foundation-supports-ysf-with-generous-grant/#comments Tue, 23 Sep 2014 20:24:55 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4192  

This week, Cadillac and the General Motors Foundation gave a generous grant of $25,000 to Young Storytellers to support our ongoing operations in Los Angeles and New York City. . . . more

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This week, Cadillac and the General Motors Foundation gave a generous grant of $25,000 to Young Storytellers to support our ongoing operations in Los Angeles and New York City.

Since its inception in 1976, the General Motors Foundation has dedicated itself to giving back to communities across the country. Over the past decade, the GM Foundation has donated more than $265 million in grants to support nonprofit organizations within the areas of Education, Health and Human Services, Environment/Safety and Community Development. Today, the GM Foundation focuses on investments in education that support the next generation of leaders and innovators, particularly in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Special thanks to Melody Lee from Cadillac and Head Mentor Scotty Crowe for their hard work in securing this much needed funding!

Cadillac-logo

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Tix & VIP Packages ON SALE NOW! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/biggestshow2014 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/biggestshow2014#comments Mon, 22 Sep 2014 20:52:07 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4182 . . . more]]> . . . more]]> http://www.youngstorytellers.com/biggestshow2014/feed/ 0 Script Submissions Now Open! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/s4s14/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/s4s14/#comments Tue, 26 Aug 2014 18:13:10 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4150

“I do not suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.” – Edgar Allen Poe

Be like Edgar Allen Poe!

For the past three years, Alissa Bachner, Paul Karp

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“I do not suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.” – Edgar Allen Poe

Be like Edgar Allen Poe!

For the past three years, Alissa Bachner, Paul Karp and Melanie Zoey Weinstein have produced a night of one act plays called SANITY IS FOR SUCKERS. Some of you may have attended. Some of you may have donated. Some of you are hearing of this for the first time. Regardless, we’re going for it again in THE FOURTH ANNUAL SANITY IS FOR SUCKERS. The event serves to cultivate and showcase up-and-coming talent in a collaborative environment while raising funds for The Young Storytellers Foundation. YSF provides underserved children in the public school system an opportunity to write stories and see them brought to life through performance. Over the past three years, we have raised and donated nearly $9000 to charity.

Take the next step!

If you’d like to submit, please send us a one act play (10 pages or less) inspired by or connected to the theme: SANITY IS FOR SUCKERS. We’re looking for one act plays for the…out of touch. Let those words inspire you as they will, and, most importantly – have fun!

Them’s the rules!

Please keep your production simple – limited props, lights, sound and set.

Cast size: 1-4 actors

For support transitioning from screen to stage for your 10 minute play, here are some resources:

http://www.10-minute-plays.com/how_to_write_a_10_minute_play.html

http://www.amazon.com/Perfect-10-Writing-Producing-10-Minute/dp/0325003122

Submission guidelines!

Please email your play to sanity4suckers@gmail.com no later than 11:59 PM PST on Thursday, September 25, 2014.

Pay a $10 submission fee here. (NOTE: THIS IS A CHARITABLE DONATION)

*Make sure to write “S4S” in the “How did you hear about Young Storytellers” section.

Hey, I have a director/actor(s) in mind! Maybe I am the director/actor I have in mind!

Great! Please include that information in your submission.

One last thing…

Have fun and feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns (sanity4suckers@gmail.com). We will be notifying you of our decisions in October. Good luck and we look forward to reading your work!

 

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Memorable Moments – YSF Summer Camp http://www.youngstorytellers.com/memorable-moments-ysf-summer-camp/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/memorable-moments-ysf-summer-camp/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 17:47:10 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4099 We had a writer, Isis, who was the quietest/shyest student I’ve ever met through YSF. She would answer questions in 1-2 words one-on-one, but in a group setting, she would . . . more

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We had a writer, Isis, who was the quietest/shyest student I’ve ever met through YSF. She would answer questions in 1-2 words one-on-one, but in a group setting, she would withdraw. She wouldn’t sit in the circle, she wouldn’t play games, she wouldn’t speak to the group… if asked a question in the group or if it was her turn in the circle for a game, she’d become paralyzed and just shrug after about 20 seconds.

It was a bit of an issue for the first few sessions. Pilar spoke with her mother in the first week, then I scheduled a pre-session meeting with her the following week, and we made some agreements with Isis – she’d participate, she’d write her story, and she’d present her story on stage like everyone else at The Big Show.

Participation.. not so much.

Writing.. we found that she and Alex would work well when they were alone, so I split them off, and she powered through and finished about 4 pages in 2 days. I’d check on them and she would quietly be telling Alex the story.. .but she didn’t look happy, and she was often distracted by anything in arm’s reach (rubber band, pencil, spot on the floor).

At the show, she arrived, we celebrated her, but she didn’t seem happy. This is her walking in on the carpet (and pretty much sums up her demeanor for the session):

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She froze up when trying to cast, so I said they could go last while they decided who to cast. A few minutes later, I look over, and Isis is bawling. Sobbing, scared to death. I go over to her, and she can’t even form words.

I ask, “are you okay?”
She shakes her head no.
I ask her if she wants Alex to take care of casting her story?
She shakes her head yes.
I tell her she doesn’t have to do anything she doesn’t want to do – today is her day, so we’ll all do whatever it is that makes it the best for her. Cool?
She shakes her head yes. But a little dubious.
I ask if her mom is coming, thinking that’ll calm her.
She shakes her head yes, and says (this is the most she said to me all session), “but my mom gets mad at me when she sees me cry.”
And that just broke my heart…that she was so intimidated that she was upset and then upset because her mom would see her upset.
So I said we’ll get her cleaned up and she’ll be in good shape for the show. And for her and Alex to work out what she wants to do for casting, speaking, etc.

A few other mentors came over and tried to comfort her. She settled down, and we started the show.

The show was awesome, great stories. At one point, I look at the audience and see Isis:

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That’s her mom behind her. Biggest smile I’ve ever seen on her. Well – the only smile I’d ever seen on her.

And then, most importantly, during her story:

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Which almost made me cry. Other mentors took photos too, because no one expected her to be so happy seeing her work performed. AND, her story was GOOD! The place went nuts for her.

I tried to make a comment after she took a bow without her feeling like I was using her as an example, but the fact that the program gives a voice to every young writer, no matter their personality, is magical.

Okay – that’s my story. Amazing reminder why I love this so much.

– Scotty Crowe, Head Mentor Extraordinaire

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Sign up for a Mentor Training Today! https://youngstorytellers.wufoo.com/forms/fall-2014-mentor-training-rsvp/ https://youngstorytellers.wufoo.com/forms/fall-2014-mentor-training-rsvp/#comments Tue, 19 Aug 2014 20:10:22 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4061 . . . more]]> . . . more]]> https://youngstorytellers.wufoo.com/forms/fall-2014-mentor-training-rsvp/feed/ 0 Young Storytellers Honored with Grant from Golden Globes! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/young-storytellers-honored-with-grant-from-golden-globes/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/young-storytellers-honored-with-grant-from-golden-globes/#comments Fri, 15 Aug 2014 17:58:01 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4032 For the third consecutive year, the Young Storytellers Foundation received a generous grant from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association in support of the Script to Stage Program.

SNL alum Jenny . . . more

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For the third consecutive year, the Young Storytellers Foundation received a generous grant from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association in support of the Script to Stage Program.

SNL alum Jenny Slate accepted the award on behalf of the Young Storytellers Foundation. And during the course of the evening, celebrities like Channing Tatum, Sofia Vergara, Robert Pattinson, Kerry Washington, Andy Samberg, Minnie Driver, Morgan Freeman and Nick Jonas accepted checks from the HFPA for initiatives that included higher education, film preservation, training and mentoring, and the promotion of cultural exchange. By the time the final curtain bowed, almost two million dollars had been given away to entertainment-related charities. Other grantees included YSF partners Inner-City Arts, Young Musician’s Foundation, Sundance Institute, among others. 

Click here to watch video from the awards ceremony!

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Movie Makers Summer Bootcamp at Sony! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/movie-makers-summer-bootcamp-at-sony/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/movie-makers-summer-bootcamp-at-sony/#comments Thu, 14 Aug 2014 20:33:53 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=4055 The Movie Makers Summer Bootcamp is a one week collaborative filmmaking program for 12 Middle School Students selected from the Young Storytellers alumni pool. 

Students spent the first week of . . . more

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The Movie Makers Summer Bootcamp is a one week collaborative filmmaking program for 12 Middle School Students selected from the Young Storytellers alumni pool. 

Students spent the first week of August on the Sony Studios Lot writing, directing, and filming short movies in pairs. Each team was guided through the process by a high school mentor (also a member of our alumni community). Films were shot on iPads and created using the 3-2-1 exercise (3 pages, 2 actors, 1 location). The week-long camp culminated in a screening for family and friends, as well as the creation of a trailer for each film that the students pitched to a marketing team from Sony. Special thanks to YSF Board Member Lani Monos and SVP Digital Marketing Jake Zim for their incredible support of this program!

Check out highlights from the camp in our slideshow!

 

 

Click to view slideshow.

Photos courtesy of Aaron Jettleson Photography

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Meet Eliana, from Young Storyteller to Award-Winning Playwright! http://www.youngstorytellers.com/meet-eliana-from-young-storyteller-to-award-winning-playwright/ http://www.youngstorytellers.com/meet-eliana-from-young-storyteller-to-award-winning-playwright/#comments Fri, 11 Jul 2014 18:00:06 +0000 http://www.youngstorytellers.com/?p=3961

When I was 9 years old, I wrote a play. 

I was partnered with a professional writer (her name is Merle Goldberg and I still have the letter she presented

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When I was 9 years old, I wrote a play. 

I was partnered with a professional writer (her name is Merle Goldberg and I still have the letter she presented to me at my “opening” along with a copy of the script, signed by all my actors).  My play was an absurdly ambitious epic saga that followed a young girl fighting to save a city – and I vaguely remember that it included an elaborate dream sequence with burning trees of some kind and a massive ocean voyage.  And all this in roughly fifteen pages.  

But, even though I was just a kid, everyone took my work seriously.  I was mentored, nurtured and respected as a young artist with a story to tell.  I got to hear my words performed in front of classmates and parents on our school’s humble cafetorium stage with adult actors who dedicated themselves to my characters.  And I got that opportunity thanks to the Young Storytellers Foundation.

Getting to work with the Young Storytellers Foundation gave me an affirmation, even at such a young age, that the stories that excited me were worth telling – and even more importantly, that my voice mattered enough to be the one that told them.   I am a product of outreach, and I have no doubt that having the chance to work with the Young Storytellers Foundation put me on the path that’s led me to so much opportunity today. 

It’s not often we get to tell our stories.  At 17, I know that mine is only beginning, but I’m so honored to report that I am a two time Young Arts winner in writing for film or stage and a winner in the Blank Theatre’s Young Playwrights Festival.  Two of my plays were produced at my arts high school last May, and in September, I will begin at Columbia University in New York City. 

When I follow the breadcrumbs back to source of all this, I always think of the Young Storytellers Foundation, and the way they gave me the power of voice.   I couldn’t be more grateful to the foundation for what they do, and I look forward to seeing how their programs evolve in the future, to introduce even more young people to the arts. 

Watch Eliana perform her winning monologue “Goldfish” at the YoungArts Festival.

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