“Every time I see my students, I remind myself that this is the most important thing I could be doing.”
Kobi Libii | Former Teaching Artist & Current Artistic Advisory Board Member
Application Deadline: June 7, 2019
Opening Act was founded in 2000 to address a clear need for teens attending some of the most under-served public schools in New York City to feel a greater sense of empowerment and purpose in life. Our founders were actors and educators who knew they could offer students more opportunities, through theater, to develop leadership and communication skills, build self-confidence, and gain a strong sense of community. Since inception, we have grown to reach over 3,000 teens by serving 56 schools throughout New York City, including our newest partnership with the city’s alternative school district, working with formerly incarcerated young people.
Opening Act’s flagship program is the full-year After-School Theater Program for high schools which culminates in original productions created and performed by the students in professional Off-Broadway theaters: YESfest. Our students create thoughtful and reflective narratives about issues they feel are important to explore, ranging from police brutality to economic inequity to love and family values. We say YES to our students’ powerful stories and voices.
At this time, when so many of the issues Opening Act’s work addresses – social justice, education, the arts, equity – are gaining urgency because of national events, our programming is especially critical and relevant.
In addition to our After-School Programs, Opening Act offers a Summer Arts and Leadership Conservatory, Post-Secondary Readiness Program, Student Leadership Company, and Alumni Network. We will also be piloting our first middle school program in the 2019 – 2020 school year.
Opening Act is at a pivotal and compelling moment as an organization and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to welcome new teaching artists to play a critical role in our next stage.
Job Description: Opening Act seeks Teaching Artists to join its highly collaborative team of professionals who are committed to living out Opening Act’s core values in our programs:
- Showing Up
- YES And-ing
Opening Act Teaching Artists work in 2 person teams within one high school campus site for the entirety of the school year. Teaching Artists are guided by a Mentor Teaching Artist who has been with the organization for at least one year. Together, the team works to bring together a strong ensemble of students, giving them a foundation in improvisation, acting technique, and playmaking.
Through Teaching Artist facilitation, student ensembles create a showcase of original scenes to present in December at their campus and a fully devised original production presented at an Off-Broadway theater in May.
Teaching Artists will be hired for the length of the school year (September-June) to work at 1-2 of our partnering campuses. Programs meet weekly for two hours each at the beginning of each semester and expand to two rehearsals closer to end of semester performances.
Teaching Artists will be paid a workshop rate for their teaching time and an hourly meeting/training rate. Outside workshop hours include mandatory start of semester training, 5 hours of professional development, meeting time within co-teaching teams and various extracurricular student enrichments events throughout the year.
What can you expect teaching with Opening Act?
- Programs are team taught
- Opening Act has an existing curriculum that guides teaching teams throughout the year
- Most of our programs are after-school and student participation is voluntary
- Teaching Artists are afforded a long-term opportunity to guide and develop young artists as our residencies last the entirety of the school year
- Program staff provide exceptional support for teaching teams
- Opening Act offers paid professional development
- Passionate about youth development
- Strong ability to engage and connect with youth (grades 6-12)
- Improv and theater-making background
- Excellent time management
- Extremely reliable
- Ability to complete administrative classroom tasks by assigned deadline (workshop logs, reporting hours, permission slip collection, etc.)
- Curiosity in exploring Opening Act’s approach to devising original theater
- Commitment to and willingness to develop anti-racist practices within the classroom as an educator, artist, and collaborator
Additional skills sought, but not required:
- Experience working or learning in the NYC public school system
- Experience working with court-involved youth, homeless youth, and youth with high levels of trauma
- Co-teaching experience
- Spanish speaker
To be considered for this position, you must be available for a demo lesson which will take place either July 11th or July 12th. You must also be available for our Fall Teaching Artist training, which will take place on September 4th, 5th, and 6th.
This is a part-time position.
Opening Act seeks to create a work environment and organizational culture that is reflective of the students with whom we work. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.
Salary: Starting at $140 per workshop, $25 per hour for meetings and trainings
Application Instructions: Please send a teaching resume and artistic resume along with a cover letter that addresses why you would like to work with Opening Act and a moment in your life when someone said “YES” to you that you believe has lead you to where you are today.
Please submit all materials to https://form.jotform.com/erikaoa/taapp2019.
Late or incomplete applications will not be considered. No phone calls, please. We will contact only those applicants with whom we plan to set up an interview.