July 14, 2015
The [Intern]al Perspective: Exploring the Los Angeles Theatre Center
As a young theatre artist, I have learned over the past few years in my studies and experiences outside of school about the skill and value of collaboration amongst my fellow artists. As a result, I have formed a personal belief that every visual and performing artist should take it upon themselves to learn about and acknowledge the work of the administration that goes into producing the work that is being created. As a performer or showcased visual artist, you only experience one piece of the whole puzzle. The amount of creativity, time, and patience that goes into the originating and planning of an event is something that should be valued just as much as the work that is presented by the visual and performing artists in the forefront.
My experience working as the communications intern for Cornerstone has provided me with that insight and has encouraged me to continue pursuing arts administration as a career goal. Part of that growth and inspiration has also resulted from alternative experiences that have been provided by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission through the internship program. When you intern through LACAC, you are organized into Learning Community Groups (LCG) and participate in two events over the course of your internship with that group. Your LCG is composed of interns from other organizations who work in the same area that you do and since Cornerstone is located in Downtown Los Angeles, my LCG consists of interns from organizations such as East West Players, La Plaza de Cultura y Artes, Young Musicians Foundation, and a few more.
On Friday, July 10th, we attended our first Learning Community event which was hosted by the Los Angeles Theatre Center located in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles. The LATC holds the offices to the Latino Theater Company, Robey Theatre Company, and Watts Village Theater Company and our day began with a panel with representatives from each of the aforementioned companies. Each member provided insight to what it was like to work in an administrative position for a nonprofit performing arts company and also described the work that each company produced for the public. They heavily stressed the importance of commitment and collaboration that is required from all members of the company when working in a nonprofit setting and discussed the power and influence that theatre can have socially and politically.
Following the panel, we were then given a tour of the LATC which contained multiple performance spaces and galleries. For me, it was particularly exciting because I love entering performance spaces and learning the history behind them. Once the tour was over, the interns grabbed lunch together and got to know one another. This was a great opportunity for us to share our internship experiences and network with each other.
I left this day feeling fulfilled, inspired, and excited because meeting other young artists and hearing what they have to say always gets my creative juices flowing and it reminds me that I am a part of something that is bigger than myself. I am grateful to have theatre be a huge part of my life and I am grateful to be working for a company that produces universal work that not only brings the company together, but the community as well. I am constantly reminded about the importance of the arts and if there is anything that I could leave you with from this blog it is that your creativity is highly valued and needs to be shared with the world. We all have a voice and we need to help one another be heard.
Written by Joseph Reyes, Cornerstone’s Communications Intern. Joseph is studying Theatre Arts and Business Management at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, CA. This internship is made possible by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission Summer Internship Program.