The Fight for Arts Education

Idina Menzel with students of NewArts at FYL Fundraiser

Idina Menzel with students of NewArts at FYL Fundraiser

A month ago in New York, a few hundred forward thinking philanthropists assembled for my family's annual fundraiser supporting arts education. Our foundation, Find Your Light, supports over ninety programs across the country, and we are still growing. 

I don't know what I would have done if it weren't for the video and film programs I was fortunate enough to take part in growing up. To pay it forward, for our fundraiser each year I create a short documentary highlighting the work being done in some of the programs we support. It's too easy to dismiss this subject, especially when it's kept in the abstract. Everyone "feels good" about art, but far too few people consider it an essential part of school. Too many treat it as a luxury; a side dish to more important subjects.

I encourage you to go to our website and read all about the scientific studies that prove repeatedly that arts programs benefit not only children interested in art, but also increase grades in other classes, increase college acceptance rates, lower crime rates, build empathy and confidence...the list goes on.

I find it's hard to convince people in words, and I think these docs go a long way to explain just what exactly happens in arts programs. And if you think it's just a room of fifty children throwing glitter at each other, I definitely encourage you to watch.

I've posted both docs HERE (2017 and 2016). I hope they help you understand just how necessary it is to keep programs like these alive.

- C


credit: Saam Gabbay

credit: Saam Gabbay

Hi, friends.

For the past few years, I have been lucky enough to make a living directing commercials. I've worked largely in the "Health and Wellness" space of advertising, which has allowed me the opportunity to meet some truly inspiring people. It's remarkable when I think about it. Most folks go to work and see the same hundred people. I go to work and meet someone new who has overcome great struggles to achieve a life of tremendous positivity. It's pretty cool.

While I plan to continue in this space, I now also plan to expand on that work. I have a lot of ideas that are very different from this sort of thing, and I hope to lay the groundwork here so that when those ideas come to fruition, there is a place that will accept them. So to mark that sea change and create that place, I've updated my website.

First, it's a whole new look. Simpler and easier. And it works on mobile now. I've attained modern status!

Second, I've decided to use my full name, which will be reflected in the URL 32 days from now, and not a moment sooner (thanks ICANN). It's superficial and not that important, but so long as I'm "getting back to my roots" in a sense, I might as well be consistent.

And third, I've decided to put up this bloggidy blog. It's something I had a long time ago, but I didn't really know what to do with it then. Now, I have so many projects brewing that as any of these start to take shape, I'd like a platform to discuss it. I have (for some reason) a notable amount of Twitter followers. But Twitter can be constricting, and sometimes I feel like tossing my voice into the loud hat of social consciousness. More simply, it's an easy way to update people on my life without calling each one of you personally, as nice as I'm sure you are.

You may not notice too much new content yet, but I will be adding some new spots, a short documentary, and hopefully some TV/Film related news very soon. I will write you as often as I can. Feel free to keep up either on Twitter or Instagram, I'll be sure to update one of those places when I have something to say here.

Lastly, if you're reading this, thanks for your time and interest. If we're all honest about it, there's no point to what I do if you don't watch and listen. I don't take that for granted. I hope to do you proud.