WHAT WE DO
TeenTix exists to break down the barriers that prevent teens from accessing art in our community, such as ticket or admission cost, not knowing where to look for events, navigating transportation around the city, and feeling insecure around arts-going if there's no one in their lives already championing the arts.
"If Seattle culture has a future, TeenTix is at its heart."
- Brendan Kiley, The Stranger, TeenTix 2009 Genius Awards shortlist profile
Our CORE PROGRAMS have been developed in direct response to the barriers preventing teens from participating in the arts:
ANY teenager (13-19 years old) can sign up for a free TeenTix pass! The pass entitles teens to purchase $5 day-of-show tickets at any of our 70+ partner organizations in Seattle (69) and Tacoma (6). Plus, we make sure teens know WHERE they can use their TeenTix pass once they get it - explore the TeenTix.org Calendar for all the events available to you on a specific day, or in a specific genre - and our weekly E-Newsletter gives you a list of our top picks for the upcoming week. Since 2004, over 70,000 teens from all over the world have signed up for a TeenTix pass, purchasing more than 130,000 affordable tickets to arts and cultural events in our community! But TeenTix is about much more than cheap tickets. We also provide opportunities for teens from all backgrounds to engage deeply with the arts, through The New Guard and The Press Corps.
The New Guard is formally an arts leadership and administrative training program for teens, but really this group is the heart and soul of TeenTix. New Guardians play a central role in guiding the development of TeenTix programs and events, identifying organizational values and serving as the primary teen ambassadors for TeenTix, AND they participate in high-level decision-making alongside our Board of Directors and Advisory Council. Each year, The New Guard consists of about 20 teens, 4 of whom serve on the New Guard Leadership Board acting as the program’s primary administrators with mentorship from TeenTix's Executive Director. Since it’s launch The New Guard has nurtured over 170 young leaders who have gone on to contribute to their communities as artists, journalists, activists, arts administrators, politicians, scientists, lawyers, and entrepreneurs.
The Press Corps promotes critical thinking, communication, and information literacy through arts criticism and journalism practice for teens. When the Press Corps re-launched in 2018 after a short hiatus, the updated program was designed to include racial equity and social justice priorities. The Press Corps has an explicit goal of disrupting systems of oppression within arts media that have kept marginalized voices out of arts journalism.
The program has several components:
- The TeenTix Newsroom: A school-year round program for teen writers who curate, write, and edit reviews of arts events for the TeenTix blog. This group is led by the Teen Editorial Staff (TEDS).
- Press Corps Workshops and Intensives: Opportunities for teens to experiment or dive more deeply into arts writing. The workshops are often offered in partnership with TeenTix Arts and Community Partners.
- Arts Criticism 101 Residencies: As part of the Creative Advantage Community Arts Partner Roster, the Press Corps hosts arts criticism residencies in public schools in partnership with classroom teachers and tailored to their students' needs and interests.
Press Corps program strategies center around accessibility - including tailoring class location and time of day, and ensuring all Press Corps workshops are free to participants. Some of the city’s most talented professional arts critics from The Seattle Times, The Stranger, Seattle Globalist and more have taught over 600 teens through the Press Corps program resulting in over 500 reviews of arts and culture events that live on the TeenTix Blog.
TeenTix builds a bright future for our region by empowering young people to take an active role in shaping their arts community as audience members, critics, influencers, advocates, patrons, and leaders.
A healthy community whose diverse civic leaders value, support, and participate in a thriving arts sector.
OUR COMMITMENT TO ANTI-RACISM
TeenTix is an anti-racist organization that is actively working to identify, name, and correct institutionalized racism and constructs of white supremacy within our own organization, and to help our partnered arts and culture organizations do the same. Our programs work to uplift marginalized voices in arts leadership and arts journalism, and to increase access to art.
We have a multi-layered, hierarchical approach in addressing our equity work:
- First, we use a racial lens because we know that the construct of race intersects with all aspects of inequity.
- Second, we prioritize youth voice, need, and choice. By breaking down the hierarchical and exclusionary paradigm of high and low art, we offer teens an opportunity to explore wherever their interest takes them.
- Third, it is our job to increase the visibility of art that is representative of different communities. In our marketing, programming, and community engagement efforts, we encourage young people to explore art that addresses diverse world perspectives. We believe experiencing different views creates opportunities for teens to become engaged citizens with the capacity to create equitable community.
- Genuine diversity requires early access.
- Teens should be influencers of culture, not just receivers.
- Arts attendance is arts education, arts attendance is civic participation.
- Technology and data can be positive, transformative influences.
- Live, shared experiences are inherently valuable, especially when they facilitate interaction that crosses traditional generational, ethnic, and socio-economic divides.
- Fun, leisure, and entertainment are crucial components of a healthy adolescence that need protecting.
- Much of art’s value cannot be quantified.
- Settle for nothing less than for profound inclusiveness and radical hospitality.
- The “underserved” are also the “under-invited”.
- Experimentation, exploration, and boundary-pushing inspire positive transformation.
- Create safe spaces for critical thinking and civilized disagreement.
- Youth empowerment means the elevation and prioritization of the youth voice.
- Embrace change, risk, and failure in order to stay nimble and responsive to the ever-evolving teen demographic.
- TeenTix is an anti-racist organization that is actively working to identify, name, and correct institutionalized racism within our own organization, and to help our partnered arts organizations do the same.
TeenTix was founded in 2004 by Seattle Center and in partnership with ten of the resident arts organizations on the Seattle Center campus. In 2006, TeenTix began adding partners outside of Seattle Center. Currently, 70+ arts organizations throughout the Puget Sound region participate in the TeenTix program, including Tacoma Art Museum, Seattle Symphony, Seattle Art Museum, Edmonds Center for the Arts, Seattle Opera, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle International Film Festival, Tacoma Arts Live, Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP), 5th Avenue Theatre, and ACT Theatre. To date, TeenTix has facilitated the sale of over 130,000 arts tickets to teens. We think that's pretty cool.