The Current

Upstream Arts News
October 2015  

Welcome, New Subscribers! 
We hope you'll enjoy this monthly update on our work, events, ways to get involved, and more. We only include highlights here, so be sure to visit our website to learn more about our multidisciplinary arts programs for people with disabilities at every stage of life.
Photos from The Art of Play
In case you missed it, visit us on Facebook to see a few snaps  from The Art of Play at Minneapolis Central Library last month - then save the date for our next session on December 8! Click here to learn more.
Cover of Upstream Arts' 2014-15 Annual Report

Watch Your Mailbox
Keep an eye out - in the coming weeks, we will be putting our brand new 2014-15 Annual Report in the mail, chock full of gorgeous photos from our programs, highlights from our evaluation data, and more! If you're not on our snail mail list, simply send us your address and we'll make sure you get a copy.

Join the Conversation 
We regularly share videos, articles, and other resources that relate to our disability is not a four-letter word campaign. This month, we're excited to see that American Theatre devoted an entire issue to disability and theater! We'd especially love to hear your thoughts on articles like Allison Considine's "Theatre Artists with Disabilities are Ready, Willing, and, Yes, Able." How does this perspective speak to or depart from your own experience?
Dear Friend, 
Happy chilly October-almost-November! This month, we're excited to share:
  • A powerful story from one of our recent programs  
  • Photos from The Art of Play at Minneapolis Central Library
  • Bold new writing on disability and theater in American Theatre magazine
  • Gratitude for recent contributions 
  • How you can "maximize" your 10th Anniversary gift to Upstream Arts on Give to the Max Day!
As always, this bounty is just the tip of the iceberg; keep tabs on our website and social media for more. We're grateful to have you in our community!
Julie, Matt, Bree, and everyone at Upstream Arts
Rhythm Conversation
It’s that time of year! Upstream Arts launched more than 20 fall programs in Minneapolis Public Schools this month – and already, the amazing stories have started rolling in. Here’s a powerful anecdote shared by Julie Kurtz, one of our teaching artists, from an Upstream Arts session in a Special Education classroom for middle school girls with emotional/behavioral disabilities.
“We got the group snapping, keeping a steady beat, and started introductions. ‘Hi, my name is…’ (in rhythm) ‘and I feel…’—encouraging their speech to be in rhythm with the snapping. The last student in the circle didn’t want to participate. ‘Pass,’ she requested.
I picked up a drum and asked her whether she was feeling an energetic rhythm or a slow, steady rhythm. “Slow and steady,” she replied. ‘Like this?’ I clarified, using the drum. ‘Yeah,’ she said. While I maintained that rhythm on the drum, my fellow teaching artist grabbed an instrument and began ‘replying’ to me — a seamless transition into the next activity, ‘Rhythm Conversation.’ One of the students exclaimed, ‘Can I..?’ We pulled out more instruments, keeping the ‘conversation’ going as we passed one to each student, until soon the entire group was jamming together." Click to read more.
Gratitude and GIVE TO THE MAX!
Enormous thanks to David & Joy Baker, Bob Goodfellow, Dale & Rose Haning, Marilyn Mounger, Gillian Spence, Sara Stack, Becky Timm, and two anonymous supporters for recent gifts!
Thursday, November 12 is Give to the Max Day, a big annual day of giving in Minnesota. Starting this Sunday, 11/1, you can schedule Give to the Max donations in advance! While we gratefully receive gifts through many different platforms, those made to Upstream Arts on for Give to the Max Day will be eligible for special prizes that increase each dollar's impact.
As you know, we're celebrating our 10th Anniversary and have a goal of raising $100,000 by June 30! This Sunday, can you schedule a special anniversary gift for Upstream Arts on to coincide with Give to the Max Day?
  • $10 restocks paint supplies for our programs in Special Education classrooms.
  • $100 provides 4 hours of paid professional development for a Teaching Artist.
  • $1,000 subsidizes a 12-week Upstream Arts residency at a school or adult disability service provider with the fewest resources.
Click here to visit us on to schedule your Give to the Max Day gift, or visit to learn about other ways to give.
No matter what, you're moving this work upstream into the next 10 years. Thank you for your partnership!
Click to Donate Now
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