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Party For The Arts Celebrates Burbank Arts Heroes

The Burbank Arts For All Foundation holds its sixth annual gala, Party For The Arts, on Friday, April 21, at The Globe Theatre, located on the Universal Studios lot. This year’s event honors Jordan Middle School music teacher Christine DeMore, volunteer Brenda Burroughs and patron Woodbury University.

Every spring, the Foundation recognizes three pillars of support for arts education in Burbank public schools with the Patron of the Arts Award, the Arts For All Educator Award and the Champion of the Arts Award.

“Our Party for the Arts guests will enjoy a festive yet elegant evening celebrating with the Burbank community while feasting on fine food, hosted cocktails, music and dancing and many will leave with fantastic auction items,” commented Trena Pitchford, Executive Director for Burbank Arts For All Foundation.

Burbank Arts For All Foundation honors Jordan Middle School Vocal Music Director Christine DeMore as its 2017 Arts for All Educator Award. (Photo Courtesy Burbank Arts For All Foundation)

“But most importantly, they will leave knowing they have played an important role in ensuring Burbank’s students learn through creativity in their classrooms as they prepare for their futures. We guarantee a wonderful night out.”

Woodbury University has shared its substantial resources with the Burbank Arts For All Foundation and the Burbank Unified School District for many years, furthering the development of arts programs and opportunities for local public school students.

DeMore, as Vocal Music Director at Jordan, has helped build the confidence and musical knowledge of the sixth-, seventh- and eighth- graders who have passed through her program over the years.

“The impact that Christine DeMore has had on students in our district is profound and far-reaching,” commented Suzanne Weerts, member of the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Brenda Burroughs will receive the Champion of the Arts Award from the Burbank Arts For All Foundation. (Photo Courtesy Burbank Arts For All Foundation)

Burroughs’ years of volunteering in the community and with the Burbank Arts For All Foundation sets an exemplary standard as well.

Formerly called the Party On The Plaza, this year the Foundation’s annual gala has become the Party For The Arts.

In addition to hosted cocktails and dinner, live music and a silent auction of some very special trips and items, NBC Weathercaster Fritz Coleman returns to emcee the event.

Sponsorship and digital ad deadline for the event is Friday, April 14. A limited number of tickets are available for the event until 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 20, or until the seats sell out.

For more information on the event, stop by the Burbank Arts For All website. Information on sponsorships, ads and tickets can be found on the Party For The Arts webpage here.

BAFA Party On The Plaza Raises Funds For BUSD Arts

Burbank Arts For All Foundation celebrates its tenth anniversary and raises funds for Burbank Unified arts programs with its annual BAFA Party On The Plaza on Friday, April 29.

The L.A. County arts education initiative, Arts For All, receives the Patron of the Arts Award. Joaquin Miller Elementary School Principal Judy Hession is honored with the Arts for All Educator Award. Volunteer Judy Dellinger will be presented with the Champion of the Arts Award.

“In our 10th Anniversary Year, we are so excited to celebrate three longtime leaders who have helped to further our mission and support our District’s arts education goals over the past ten years,” stated Board of Directors Chair, Carrie Brown.

bafa2016“The L.A. County arts education initiative, Arts For All – adopted by the L.A. County Board of Supervisors and led by the L.A. County Arts Commission – and the LA County Office of Education – is the driving force behind our county’s commitment to arts education for all of its 1.6 million students. We are incredibly proud to honor them with the Patron of the Arts Award to celebrate their tireless commitment and ongoing success.”

“We are also pleased to recognize the leadership of Joaquin Miller Elementary School’s Principal, Judy Hession, with the Arts for All Educator Award. Mrs. Hession’s commitment to arts education over the past 19 years of her administration has led to a robust arts culture on her campus, an Exemplary Arts School award and academic success for the school’s largely diverse student body,” added Brown.

“I am also thrilled to announce that we will be honoring longtime volunteer Judy Dellinger with the Champion of the Arts Award. After retiring from teaching, Mrs. Dellinger has remained committed to arts education over the past 12 years, leading music classes in our elementary schools and furthering our Foundation’s mission.”

“This year is extra special as we plan to celebrate the growth of creativity in the classroom for our students over the past ten years,” commented Trena Pitchford, BAFA Executive Director.

Tickets or sponsorship packages can be purchased via www.burbankartsforall.org or by contacting Pitchford at trena@burbankartsforall.org or (818) 736-5269.

The 2016 gala celebration will be held at The Globe Theatre at Universal Studios Hollywood. Festivities begin at 6:00 p.m. with hosted cocktails and a silent auction followed by dinner prepared by Wolfgang Puck Catering, awards presentation and dancing to award winning party band, SPLASH. Weathercaster for NBC4, Fritz Coleman, returns as Master of Ceremonies.

Photos from the 2015 BAFA Party On The Plaza can be found here.

BAFA Donates More Than $30,000 Towards BUSD Arts Programs

Burbank Arts For All Foundation (BAFA) board members gathered on Thursday, November 5, to present a check to the Burbank Unified Board of Education for more than $30,000 towards BUSD arts programs as part of the Foundation’s Fall 2015 grant cycle.

“We see arts education – in its broadest term – as basic instruction for every student in the District and quite possibly a career pathway for our City’s future employees,” commented BAFA Executive Director Trena Pitchford.

“We are pleased to report that we were able to invest $30,473 for arts education programs. This is the second largest investment we have made in a single grant cycle,” continued Pitchford, in her address to the Board of Education.

“With this cycle, our funding is matched with $24,735.99 from the District’s Arts for All funds, a school site’s budget, parent driven booster clubs or PTA units. Together, that’s more than $55,208.99 given to our schools for arts education programming.”

Burbank Arts For All Foundation Board of Directors members and Executive Director present a check for $30,473 to the BUSD Board of Education. BUSD Superintendent Matt Hill, District Administrative staff, BUSD teachers, principals and parent leaders gather for the presentation on November 5, 2015. (Photo Courtesy Burbank Arts For All Foundation)

Burbank Arts For All Foundation Board of Directors members and Executive Director present a check for $30,473 to the BUSD Board of Education. BUSD Superintendent Matt Hill, District Administrative staff, BUSD teachers, principals and parent leaders gather for the presentation on November 5, 2015. (Photo Courtesy Burbank Arts For All Foundation)

“We are directly impacting 3,597 students this school year alone and we are hopeful that through the sustainability of these programs and equipment we will continue to impact generations to come.”

Several teachers and principals of school programs funded in the Fall 2015 BAFA grant cycle including Washington Elementary, Miller Elementary, Edison Elementary, Jordan Middle School, Burbank High School and Magnolia Park School also attended the school board meeting.

For the Foundation’s Fall grant cycle, 24 applications were submitted for funding, including submissions from six elementary schools, all three middle schools, both Burbank and Burroughs high schools and the Magnolia Park School for a total financial request of $65,198.61.

“This was the first cycle with our new grant application and guidelines, which allowed us to understand more of the academic goals of each grant request, the timeline of the project or program and samples of a teacher’s rubric or assessment tools,” Pitchford added.

The Foundation provided seed funding for new programs, including media arts at Miller Elementary with a green screen and equipment and integration of theater arts at Edison Elementary through an artist-in-residency.

BAFA continues funding for professional development for teachers in both elementary and secondary education, elementary school tile making, clay and visual arts, expansion of digital media arts at Jordan Middle School to incorporate 3D printing and robotics, musical instruments for all three middle school programs, expert coaches for high school instrumental music and artists-in-residency programs in songwriting and performing arts at Magnolia Park School.

Pitchford also noted BAFA’s efforts to increase or sustain equity for all students by investing in the growth of both high school dance programs through funding supplies for tap dance and investing in BUSD’s College and Career Pathways Animation program with funding for Cintiqs that will decrease the tablet to student ratio to 1:2.

She also commented that many of the BAFA-funded programs are in alignment with the recent funding that BUSD’s Board of Education has provided through the State of California’s one-time funds, the District’s LCAP priorities and goals stated in the District’s Arts for All plan.

“This is a huge celebration of our District’s Arts For All ‘eco-system’ and partnership with you and our parent and business community,” she said to school board members.

BAFA’s total funding since its inception in 2006 now stands at $344,555.01. The Foundation has funded 209 grants to all K-12 schools within Burbank Unified.

“There is certainly more to do to provide standards-based sequential arts education programming K-12, but all of us in our ecosystem should be very proud of what we continue to grow and sustain in Burbank Unified for the benefit of the thousands of students who have passed through its halls in 10 years,” she also said.

 

BAFA Secret Art Show Raises Funds And Showcases Arts In BUSD

Burbank Arts For All Foundation (BAFA) put on its third annual The Secret Art Show last Saturday evening, September 26, at ATB Studios in Burbank.

The event raised over $30,000 for the foundation and showcased more than 1000 4×6 inch artworks by more than 500 different artists.

Student volunteers pose for a photo at the Secret Art Show on Saturday. Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

Student volunteers pose for a photo at the Secret Art Show on Saturday.
Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

Live visual and musical artists performed during the four-hour event. Burbank High School’s Dance Team “Unleashed” took the crowd by surprise with a late-evening flash mob dance.

“Burbank Arts for All Foundation is grateful to the entire Burbank community and because of their generous support, the third annual Secret Art Show was a huge success,” commented BAFA Executive Director Trena Pitchford.

The Burbank High School dance team "Unleashed" arrives at the Secret Art Show on Saturday, just moments before they put on a spectacular performance. Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

The Burbank High School dance team “Unleashed” arrives at the Secret Art Show on Saturday, just moments before they put on a spectacular performance.
Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

“In addition to our fun and colorful hip pop-up art show, we were very excited to include the talents of our Burbank Unified students in visual arts, dance, music and vocal performance!”

More than 500 guests attended The Secret Art Show including City Councilmember Will Rogers and Burbank Unified Board of Education members Dr. Roberta Reynolds and Dr. Armond Aghakhanian along with BUSD Superintendent Matt Hill. Several of the Secret Artists, members of Burbank Arts for All Foundation’s Board of Directors, BUSD teachers, principals and administrators, Burbank citizens and industry leaders also enjoyed the event.

Art show volunteer Isabella Mardirossian carefully removes an artwork from the display board, to offer a closer look to an art show attendee at the Secret Art Show on Saturday. Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

Art show volunteer Isabella Mardirossian carefully removes an artwork from the display board, to offer a closer look to an art show attendee at the Secret Art Show on Saturday.
Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

“As always, the wonderful part about The Secret Art Show is our ability to showcase student works of art alongside celebrities and well-known professional artists,” added Pitchford.

The final list of artists included:

  • Conan O’Brien, Talk Show Host, Comedian
  • Andy Richter, Talk Show Announcer
  • Adonna Khare, Artist
  • Tony Hale, Author and Emmy Award Winning Actor in “VEEP”
  • Bill Morrison,  American comic book artist and writer, and co-founder of Bongo Comics
  • Bart Johnson, Actor and Director, known for his role in “High School Musical”
  • Robyn Lively, Actress, known for her role in “Teen Witch”
  • Peter Bennett, Art Director, “SpongeBob SquarePants”
  • Blake Lively, Actress, known for her role in “Gossip Girl” and “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants”
  • Ryan Reynolds, Feature Film Actor
  • Stephen Hillenburg, Creator, “SpongeBob SquarePants”
  • David Shannon, Caldecott Winning Children’s Book Author and Artist
  • Joe Mantegna, Actor, “Criminal Minds”
  • Ana Bagayan, Artist
  • Frank Dietz, Award-winning Artist and Filmmaker
  • W. Earl Brown, Actor, known for his roles in “Black Mass,” “American Crime” & “Deadwood”
  • Jim Henson Creature Shop
  • Members of the Burbank Art Association
  • BUSD Students
  • BUSD Superintendent Matt Hill
  • Artists from Warner Bros. Entertainment, The Walt Disney Animation Studio and Nickelodeon 
  • and many, many more…

At noon on Monday, October 5, BAFA launches the online auction of remaining artworks available for the $40 per piece purchase price at: www.32auctions.com/2015SecretArtShowAuction

Adonna Khare puts on a demonstration at the Secret Art Show on Saturday as she works on an enormous drawing of a lion. Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

Adonna Khare puts on a demonstration at the Secret Art Show on Saturday as she works on an enormous drawing of a lion.
Photo by: Edward Tovmassian

BUSD Superintendent Hill Challenges BAFA And District Personnel To Create Community Vision Plan For Arts

Burbank Unified Superintendent Matt Hill challenged attendees at the Burbank Arts For All Foundation’s recent Community Meeting to be leaders in the creation of a community vision plan for the arts in Burbank.

Held at the Community Services Building on Wednesday, September 2, the BAFA Community Meeting featured BUSD Superintendent Hill and BUSD Visual & Performing Arts Coordinator Peggy Flynn, who gave an overview of the history of the District’s Arts For All Plan and the creation of the Burbank Arts For All Foundation.

“My challenge for all of us in this room and for the team is, what I want to take to the Board…, is a community vision plan for the arts,” stated Hill.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Hill noted that as he was researching Burbank in preparation for interviewing for the BUSD Superintendent position earlier in 2015, he came across the District’s Arts For All plan. He called it a good, solid, working plan, bringing together partnerships with business and parental involvement integrating the arts throughout the school day.

“We have awards and accolades for Burbank Unified Arts programs. Fantastic. One of the best,” Hill continued. “There’s no reason we shouldn’t be the best in the world around the arts.”

“We have to take the time and have meetings like this,” Hill added. “What does it look like for an instrumental program, a drama program?”

“I’m asking for a vision plan,” he said. “We need to push each other to get to that vision.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Flynn discussed the recent history of the arts in BUSD. In 2003, there were virtually no arts programs paid for by the District, with only schools in affluent areas providing arts programs paid for by fundraising.

BUSD joined the L.A. County Arts Commission in 2003 and since then, has had a Board of Education whose members have supported the arts in schools, and access for all students to the arts, Flynn noted.

Many gains have been made in the past 12 years, although the recession beginning in 2007 did affect roll out and growth of arts programs.

Currently, for the 2015-16 school year, there has been a strong elementary school music program expansion, with five dedicated music teachers paid for by the district. Instrumental and music programs paid for by Education Through Music – Los Angeles (ETM-LA), a music education nonprofit, serves students at three BUSD elementary schools.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

With the College And Career Pathways program, expanding partnerships with businesses and government officials, artist-in-residence programs, professional development for integrated arts for grades K-12 and new after-school high school classes in Animation and Armenian for college credit, Burbank Unified has come a long way since 2003, Flynn pointed out.

“Having our new Superintendent share the importance of the arts in his own life and his commitment to seeing us continue to realize the goals set in the Arts For All plan was really great to hear,” commented Suzanne Weerts, BAFA Community Outreach Working Group Chair.

“And of course, Peggy’s story of where we’ve been and how far we’ve come, along with the wonderful collaborative partnerships that are currently in the works with the Career Technical Education and the Computer Assisted Drafting, etc.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

“Many of us who have been involved with this group ‘pre-foundation’ now have kids who are seniors or just starting college,” said artist and parent volunteer Jamie Butterworth, who opened the meeting with a talk about the importance of making mistakes, taking chances, experimenting and letting go in creating art.

“Art gives us a unique opportunity to make safe mistakes and discoveries, and to have the experience of making mistakes – the practice — so we can go out into the world and be inventive, flexible, creative, and confident — which is what we want for our kids (and ourselves).”

“When our oldest children started in Burbank schools, there were very few arts programs and they were inconsistent across schools,” Butterworth added. “A lot of hard work and dedication has gotten where we are today but there is still much to be done. So, we are thrilled to see many new faces and especially parents with young children who can help take us into the future.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

“Burbank Arts for All Foundation is thrilled to begin the school year with a robust discussion about how – together – we can further arts learning opportunities for all students in our public schools,” stated BAFA Executive Director Trena Pitchford. “The Foundation plans to continue to work closely in our partnership with the District to provide resources and funding so that when our Burbank students enter the employment market, they can be successful in whatever career pathway they choose.”

In April 2015, the BAFA Board of Directors added a vision statement to accompany the Foundation’s mission: “Burbank Arts for All Foundation’s vision is to inspire Burbank to build the finest arts education program in the country. We believe that all students should have equal access to a quality arts education that nurtures a balanced approach to life, develops 21st century skills for any career path a student chooses and further enriches a healthy community and creative economy in Burbank.”

Wednesday’s BAFA Community Meeting was attended by BAFA Board Members, Burbank educators, parents, community members, BUSD Board of Education members Larry Applebaum and Charlene Tabet, Burbank City Council member Emily Gabel-Luddy, Mayor Bob Frutos, BUSD Director of Elementary Education Peter Knapik, along with Flynn and Superintendent Hill.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

 

 

 

BAFA Funds BUSD Arts Education Programs

Funding for a middle school STEAM lab and financial support for visual, musical and performing arts were donated to Burbank Unified schools by the Burbank Arts For All Foundation (BAFA) during their fall grant cycle for 2014. Executive Director Trena Pitchford presented a check for $30,585.40, the largest amount ever awarded in one funding cycle, to the Board of Education on Thursday, November 6.

“These grant funds will continue to contribute to a wide variety of arts education programs impacting more than 10,011 Burbank Unified students,” commented BAFA’s Heidi Trotta.

Pitchford was joined during the presentation to the BUSD Board of Education by members of BAFA’s Board of Directors and staff, along with several teachers and principals from Miller Elementary, McKinley Elementary, Jordan, Luther and Muir Middle Schools, John Burroughs and Burbank High Schools, whose programs were funded.

“I want to commend this Board of Education, superintendent and administration regarding the work of creating Burbank Unified School District’s Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP)” commented Pitchford. “Your increased financial commitment to arts education is very much appreciated by our foundation.”

Burbank Arts For All Foundation presents funding for BUSD arts programs totaling $30, 585.40 for the Fall 2014 cycle. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank Arts For All Foundation presents funding for BUSD arts programs totaling $30, 585.40 for the Fall 2014 cycle. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“Burbank Arts for All Foundation is a committed partner to the district’s Board of Education and administration to help our schools and teachers create dynamic, thought-provoking and meaningful opportunities for students to learn through the arts,” she added.

“We see arts education, in its broadest term, as basic instruction for every student in the district and quite possibly a career pathway for our city’s future employees,” Pitchford continued. “This grant cycle, we are thrilled with the investments we have made in partnership with your commitment to arts education.”

In addition to the donation to public school programs made by BAFA, BUSD is contributing $25,883 from the district’s Arts for All funds and parent driven booster clubs and PTA units.

“This is a huge celebration of our district’s Arts For All ‘eco-system’ and partnership with you,” Pitchford told the Board of Education members and BUSD staff.

BAFA’s total funding to Burbank Unified since the foundation was created in 2006 is more than $280,000. The foundation has funded 180 total grants to all schools within the district.

While the total amount requested during the Fall 2014 cycle from 21 grant applications was $58,346.93, BAFA was only able to fund $30,585.40.

“This is the first grant cycle where we worked in partnership with BUSD’s Director of Facilities, Craig Bell, regarding funds requested for facility or classroom upgrades,” said Pitchford. “All grant applications were approved by the Facilities Department before they were considered for funding.”

BAFA’s Fall 2014 funding cycle includes:

• elementary school auditorium upgrades such as lighting instruments that build upon the structural facility upgrades made possible by community-supported Measure S bonds and theater programs

• seed funding for a middle school STEAM lab (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math)

• visual arts tools and instruments for middle schools

• at the high schools – teaching artists for English Language Arts, auditorium upgrades to be used for theater technical arts instruction, instrumental music tools and instrument replenishment, digital media arts equipment, artwalls for AP European history class and a project in tenth grade English class to create paper maché noses while teaching Cyrano DeBergerac to students with disabilities

• funding to Community Day School for teaching artists to teach visual arts for at-risk students in a mentoring partnership with the Burbank Senior Artists

• matching seed funding for professional development in Visual and Performing Arts for Magnolia Park students and teachers

• In addition to the instruments BUSD provided for elementary school music teachers, BAFA provided funding for the use of iPads in the music classroom.

“These iPads will allow the music teachers to walk through the classroom to address individual student needs rather than be tethered to a laptop computer,” explained Pitchford.

“Thank you again for your commitment to putting creativity in the classroom,” she told the Board of Education. “The arts can be the reason why our students come to school and can provide them the opportunity to attain twenty-first century skills of critical thinking, collaboration, communication and creativity.”

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)