Edgar Arceneaux Provokes Thoughts on Race in America

Review of Edgar Arceneaux: Library of Black Lies at the Henry Art Gallery.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Sofia Gerrard, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Lily Williamson!

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Sitting in an empty corner of The Henry Art Gallery is a small shack made from wooden slats no more than an inch thick. There are slivers of space between each board, and, despite the gallery's tall ceilings, the shack is hardly more than six feet tall. It seems almost like a relic of history, maybe the crowded house of a family on the frontier, or a shed containing hidden fugitives, but certainly not the exterior of "Library of Black Lies," one of the most thought provoking and unique pieces of modern art created by artist Edgar Arceneaux.

As you step inside the shack, you are greeted by a partially obscured mirror reflecting back an image of yourself. Shelves with books—some old, some wrapped in black tarps and tied together with string—create a labyrinth, one that is purposefully disorienting, but guides you to the center. As I walked through this labyrinth, the shack seemed to become larger, and my reflection peeked back at me, wondering where I would turn and where my path would lead. As I finally approached the center of the shack (shortcuts through the circuitous route are impossible), the books on display were no longer covered with drab tarps—instead, they sparkled, a warm yellow light glinting off the sugar crystals erupting from the pages.

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The Unspoken Geometry of Dying Languages

Review of Alonzo King's LINES Ballet at Meany Center for the Performing Arts.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Annika Prom, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Anya Shukla!

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Throughout the world, ancient languages are fading away at an alarming rate. Alonzo King’s Figures of Speech, performed by his LINES Ballet company, aimed to preserve these moribund dialects by conveying the struggle of maintaining each language’s culture. The ballet recently shared pieces of these dialects, which range from the provincial Hawai’ian language spoken by 27,200 people to the extinct Selk’nam language that has no known native speakers, with the Seattle community.

Bringing his San Francisco-based ballet ensemble to the UW’s Meany Hall, choreographer and artistic director Alonzo King collaborated with slam poet and linguistic advocate Bob Holman to present his latest pièce de résistance, Figures of Speech. The LINES Ballet explored the power behind lost languages, guiding the audience on a touching trek through the sound, movement, and shape of aboriginal languages.

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Win FREE tickets to Sound Off! 2019

​Three lucky winners can see this infamous youth music competition for FREE!

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Every year, MoPOP hosts Seattle's premier 21-and-under music showcase and competition called Sound Off! This local showcase supports the local music scene by giving artists of all backgrounds the opportunity to show off their original music on a large platform, connect with peers and industry professionals, and take the next step in their music careers.

This year, TeenTix Members can enter to win a pair of two tickets to one of the three semifinals! Just fill out this form to enter, and see the lineup here! We'll announce the winners of the raffle on February 1, 2019.

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2019 Winter/Spring Opportunities for Teens

Brighten up the cold Winter months or plan ahead for Spring with these opportunities just for teens!

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It's time for a fresh start, dontcha think? Try something new this year with these classes, workshops, and more from our partners. There are plenty of ways for teens to get involved in the arts this season!

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New Year, New You

​Written by Teen Editorial Staff member Anya Shukla!

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January. The first month of the new year and the perfect time for a new you. A clean slate. In other words: resolution time! If you want to read more or kick that procrastination habit, chances are you’re going to start this month. But here’s a secret: if your New Year’s resolution is to see more art—specifically art that celebrates new beginnings—the Teen Editorial Staff has got you covered. Interested in shows about youth? Check out the Children’s Film Festival at Northwest Film Forum. Want a show that was new over a hundred years ago? Go see UW Drama’s Rutherford and Son. And if you’re really craving shows that challenge societal stereotypes, we urge you to see Alonzo King LINES Ballet at Meany Center or Henry Art Gallery’s “Edgar Arceneaux: Library of Black Lies” exhibit. And if you’ve realized your resolution to run ten miles every day isn’t super realistic, you can always procrastinate by watching Yes Anderson at Jet City Improv or, to be honest, going to see any show in Seattle. Don’t worry, we won’t judge. We’ll probably be doing the same thing.

The Teen Editorial Staff is made up of 5 teens who curate the review portion of the TeenTix blog and manage the TeenTix Newsroom. More information about the Teen Editorial Staff can be found HERE.

The TeenTix Press Corps promotes critical thinking, communication, and information literacy through criticism and journalism practice for teens. For more information about the Press Corps program see HERE.

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A Night Full of Laughs, Holiday Cheer, and Way Too Much Fun

Review of A(n improvised) Christmas Carol by Unexpected Productions.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Sumeya Block, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Joshua Fernandes!

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A Christmas Carol, written by Charles Dickens, is an already well known holiday story that makes its way around as a Christmas classic. Many are familiar with the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future, teaching viewers about the values of being a good person through some funny characters, and of course, holiday cheer. Yet when A Christmas Carol turns into improv and Scrooge is the head of a meditation school, the story we know so well becomes much funnier, and maybe even better than before. The special thing about A(n improvised) Christmas Carol is that the audience are the ones who create the story. A half hour before the show, one of the actors came out to ask a series of questions that would impact how the rest of the night went. The audience got to choose things like the quirks of each character, such as playing with other people’s hair when stressed. He asked who was returning to see the show again. I watched from my seat as loud cheers and applause erupted from the crowd. More than half of the room, which was full, raised their hands with excitement and chatter. There was also us newcomers, silent at first, who also raised our hands, still excited for what was next. I loved that the audience had people of all ages. This made it a friendlier experience, which I appreciated since this was my first improv show. A favorite suggestion of mine from the audience was making Tiny Tim sick from laser eye disease. Later on this was incorporated into the show when we saw Tiny Tim walk out with huge goggles on his face to protect his eyes from lasering others. Some other suggestions that made it into the show that night included Scrooge living under the stairs, the Ghost of Christmas Past being a teletubbie, Scrooge having a stash of hidden gold bars, and Scrooge licking Cratchit’s toes. The ability each actor has to add their own special touch to a character is remarkable, incorporating the tiny quirks mentioned by the audience and adding their own ideas as well, such as how Scrooge liked to slam doors or the Ghost of Christmas Past liked to repeat “Your mom is dead!” and “Scrooge is sad!” over and over again. Even my own suggestion, taping pictures of people’s faces to a door to evoke joy, was incorporated multiple times into the show. I loved that feeling of accomplishment when your suggestion made people laugh.

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A Christmas Lesson

Review of A Festival of Lessons & Carols by the Northwest Boychoir and Vocalpoint! Seattle.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Sofia Gerrard, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Anya Shukla!

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Many families have a multitude of traditions during the holiday season: some bake cookies, go caroling, volunteer at charity, or go to church. But one tradition for many families is attending A Festival of Lessons & Carols, a concert performed by the Northwest Boychoir and Vocalpoint! Seattle. As divisions of Northwest Choirs, both groups aim to instill a passion for music and the arts in children and teens from the Pacific Northwest. These talented young men and women, between the ages of six and eighteen, perform alongside the Seattle Symphony in a classic Christmas service every year. This show is based on traditional Anglican worship services often held on Christmas Eve, and is a tradition that, this year, I participated in. The 90 minutes of readings, performances of traditional and modern Christmas carols, and heartwarming sing-alongs of classic Christmas favorites proved to be a jolly experience that exemplified the Christmas spirit.

The concert started with a luminous performance of “I Saw Three Ships,” which was followed by nine Bible readings, the titular lessons, and a varied and unique selection of carols. The ethereal voices of the Boychoir mixed well with the lower sounds of both male and female sections of Vocalpoint! Seattle, with an evident effort to enliven classic Christmas songs like “Silent Night” and “Hark The Herald.” Through new rhythms and consonant harmonies, these songs illustrated the diverse talents of the choir. Although some song choices were much more obscure than others, the songs included more modern arrangements and compositions, which helped to avoid the dreaded glaze of apathy which often covers an audience's eyes when faced with unfamiliar tunes. One particularly amusing performance was that of “Sweet Little Jesus Boy,” a Gospel song first written in the 1930s and arranged by the choir’s director Joseph Crnko; this song juxtaposed soaring, nearly incandescent melodies with upbeat, contemporary sounds. The female driven sing-alongs were less varied, more traditional carols, but had the same blend of expression, excellent sense of pitch, warm tonal quality, and crisp pronunciation.

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Writing About Music About Writing

Review of Jack Straw Writers Anthology 2018.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Tova Gaster, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Anya Shukla!

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Spotify Wrapped screenshots plaster social media as the year comes to end, users’ music tastes consolidated into neat consumable packages. It’s possible I’m just salty that they called me out for listening to 50+ hours of the same artist (love you Y La Bamba), but Spotify, Apple Music, and similar streaming services are changing the way we engage with music—digitizing, isolating, and directing our listening via depersonalized algorithms. Jack Straw Cultural Center’s collaboration with the Bushwick Book Club offers a different way to engage with art: genre-blending musical collaboration, in real time.

The 12 Jack Straw writers for 2018 have been producing and sharing work all year through the Jack Straw Cultural Center in the University District, an organization dedicated to providing writers and musicians with recording experience. For their annual end-of-the-year event, Jack Straw partners with Bushwick Book Club, a collective of musicians that draw their inspiration from literary works, and pairs each writer with a musician whose job it is to create a song inspired by their writer’s work. These 12 songs span a vast range of musical styles and themes, showing the meandering transformation of an idea filtered through a different consciousness and medium.

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The Past in Polaroids

Review of “Polaroids: Personal, Private, Painterly" Photographs from the Collection of Robert E. Jackson at Bellevue Arts Museum.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Soren Kopp, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Lily Williamson!

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Human beings are constantly categorizing. “Polaroids: Personal, Private, Painterly" Photographs from the Collection of Robert E. Jackson, showcases a variety of Polaroids separated into the aforementioned categories. Out of the 13,000 photos in his collection, about 300 are Polaroids, 150 of which were selected and curated by Jackson in conjunction with Ben Heywood, chief curator at the Bellevue Arts Museum.

“Personal” refers to portraits. These images capture individuals, and the essence of who they are—the focus is on the photo’s subject rather than their actions or environment. There are certain parallels to be drawn between these portraits and selfies in our age of instant, digital cameras—they serve the same purpose. The importance doesn’t rest in what’s happening in the photo, but in the subject. However, when one thinks about photos as documents of history, even if they’re not depicting a well-known historical event, one can think about not just what’s going on inside the photo, but what’s going on in the world around that photo. Compiling photos from similar time periods can help you piece together foreign places. Social and political movements can cause people to make similar art and take similar photographs—the shared experiences of a group can influence a whole generation and their ways of thinking. Textbooks can easily miss out on depicting the way history has impacted individuals, but experiencing history through a lens makes the intangible, tangible, and the inaccessible, accessible. Conversely, capturing individuals in the context of different societies shows the universally human responses to situations, despite the circumstances. Two pieces framed together in this section portray two couples: one from the early 2000’s of a young pair posing by a fountain with flowers, and the other of a middle-aged couple posing on the beach, superimposed above the ocean. Although the individuals are from different worlds with different historical settings, they both display the same human response to being in love: a desire to capture their bond as couples.

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A Coalition of the Arts

Review of Poor People's TV Room at On the Boards.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Eleanor Cenname, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Hannah Schoettmer!

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And the show had begun. Four women on a stage. Crawling on the floor under a blanket. Furniture suspended from the ceiling. A layer of something called scrim. A topless woman. They are dancing. No, they are singing. No, they are talking. Are they sisters? Strangers? A mother and daughter? Wait, now it’s a show about Oprah. There is a pulsing noise in the background. Two scenes are happening at the same time. They are repeating an entire segment. From above, the furniture looks like a normal room. Some of the stage is flipped, so when actors are lying down and they are shown in a camera from above they look like they are sitting. They ripped the scrim. One of the women is wearing a glittery suit. They are playing with a light. The lights turn off and the show is over.

To say that Okwui Okpokwasili’s Poor People’s TV Room at On the Boards’ contemporary performance center was abstract may be an understatement; the show itself was a hypnotic, metaphoric emulsion of dance, song, monologue, and conversation. Describing the show is quite a burdensome task, as it was such a unique and shocking performance. The four women in the performance were made up of a multigenerational team of African and African American women. However, each performer was not a distinct character. Instead, the character each woman played fluctuated and changed until each woman was the other three women. Not only was the lack of distinct character a unique choice for the production, but the dancing was as well. The dancing was high energy and abstract, as some women danced alone and some danced with each other—though these partner and solo dances often happened at the same time of course.

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A Brighter Tomorrow

Review of Annie at The 5th Avenue Theatre.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Ben Capuano, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Huma Ali!

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People have a hard time forgetting firsts. You’re going to remember events like your first concert for many years after the fact. If you or a loved one are looking to experience a musical for the first time, there isn’t a better choice than the 5th Avenue Theatre’s production of Annie.

Annie was actually the first musical I ever saw—my sister loved the 1982 version and we’d seen it performed everywhere from Youth Theater Northwest to the Paramount. As a result, I went into this production with a more critical eye than usual. I wasn’t expecting anything awful, but I expected to walk away confident that my previous experiences would reign superior.

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Announcing the Theater & Dance Press Corps Intensive!

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The Press Corps Intensive is a deep-dive workshop into arts writing and arts criticism. In this multi-week course, ten teens will get to work with professional critics and arts journalists to receive mentorship on their writing. And the best part, this program is FREE!

Applications for the Theater & Dance Press Corps Intensive are now open! This Intensive runs March 10 - April 14, 2019. This FREE four-week program focuses specifically on dance and theater criticism. In this program, 10 participants will attend two dance productions and two theater productions at TeenTix Arts Partners. Teens will be mentored by professional theater and dance critics who will help each participant hone their arts criticism and arts interpretation skills. APPLY NOW! HOW IT WORKS

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The Jimi Hendrix We Didn’t Know

Review of Bold as Love: Jimi Hendrix at Home at the Northwest African American Museum

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Lark Keteyian, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Anya Shukla!

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Jimi Hendrix is a Seattle icon. Or so I'm told. Before going to see Bold as Love: Jimi Hendrix at Home at the Northwest African American Museum, I had never really gotten around to listening to his music. I'm also terrible at museums; I expect them to be stagnant and awkwardly informational. So the combination of a museum with a Seattle superstar I knew next to nothing about was mildly terrifying. I slunk into the exhibit with my head down, afraid all the fans would see the Hendrix-ignorance in my eyes, and prepared to be bombarded with trying-too-hard inspirational quotes.

The exhibit, guest curated by Jackie Peterson, is set up like a timeline, snaking chronologically around the edges of the room. Photographs and glass-encased objects—postcards, the sofa Hendrix slept on while home from tour, his grandmother's hats—drew me in with their quiet connection to this icon. I ended up learning about Hendrix's history almost accidentally: from Seattle, where he was born and spent his childhood, drawing comics and pretending to play guitar on a broom, to mid-60s London, where he almost immediately became a guitar star.

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MOHAI Shows How Art Shaped the Activism of Seattle

Review of Engage: The Art of Protest at MOHAI.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Eileen MacDonald, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Hannah Schoettmer!

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The recent MOHAI sponsored event, Engage: The Art of Protest, cultivated artistic empowerment throughout the Seattle community.

Walking through the glass doors of the MOHAI, we were greeted by plaisc covered tables strewn with photographs of powerful and historic street protests: women with chains around their necks fighting for the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1960s, workers picketing outside Pike Place Market, elderly women with fire in their eyes holding wooden crosses to commemorate those killed during a protest in Nicaragua. We were asked to sit at a table with a picture that resonated with us, giving everyone there an icebreaker and reason to interact with the strangers and friendly faces that surrounded them.

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Volunteer for Black Santa Visits!

​Help bring families holiday cheer at Northwest African American Museum this weekend!

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Ho, ho, ho! Suit up in your most festive wear and help spread the spirit of the season this weekend at Northwest African American Museum when you volunteer for Black Santa Visits!

There are two ways to donate your time: Photo Elves assist with posing families for photos, collect media releases and contact info, offer support to the photographer, and help share information to guests for purchasing prints for photos. Santa's Village Elves help waiting families with arts and crafts, keeping the room tidy and art supplies plentiful while waiting for pictures with the Big Guy!

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A Crystalline Tradition: PNB’s The Nutcracker

Review of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® at Pacific Northwest Ballet.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Camille Mauceri, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Huma Ali!

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While it may be controversial to begin the Christmas season so early, I began mine the evening of November 23rd, opening night of Pacific Northwest Ballet’s The Nutcracker. The result of which was a distinct and familiar feeling of jovial warmth—a near impossible emotion to leave McCaw Hall without.

Various candy-inspired photo booths and guests dressed in formalities, ranging from hipster-dressy to black tie, paraded the lobby anticipating the show. The show is inherently a family event, as evidenced by the many children wandering about. It is certainly the least intimidating ballet for new viewers due to its palatable familial storyline; an excellent way to scratch the surface of what can often feel like an inaccessible art form.

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SCT Takes on Muhammad Before Ali

Review of And in This Corner: Cassius Clay at Seattle Children's Theatre.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Jonah de Forest, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Joshua Fernandes!

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Muhammad Ali is one of those historical figures whose titanic cultural presence often overshadows the nuances of his life. Playwright Idris Goodwin aims to find the man behind the legend in his new work, And in This Corner: Cassius Clay, presented by Seattle Children’s Theatre. The result, as directed by Malika Oyetimein, is a lively and thoroughly original piece of theatre.

The story unfolds as if out of a pop-up-book on scenic designer Shawn Ketchum Johnson’s endlessly inventive whirligig of a set. The stage is styled after an old-school gym, with boxing equipment doubling as minimalistic, but instantly recognizable indicators of time and place. We first meet Ali (André G. Brown) in narrator form, speaking one of the many rhyming interludes that tie the narrative together (a tribute to Ali’s famous rhyme-heavy rebuttals that would remain a constant throughout his career). We are then transported to Jim Crow-era Louisville, Kentucky, where Ali remerges as a 12-year-old, then known by his birth name of Cassius Clay. There we are introduced to his mother Odessa (Bria Samoné Henderson) and younger brother Rudy (Chip Sherman), who have just left a Sunday church service. It soon becomes apparent that the realities of segregation dictate the way they behave in public and their freedom as individuals. These struggles are not lost on the Clay brothers, who, along with their friend Eddie (Lamar Legend), often talk about the heated racial climate with both childlike innocence and the clarity of first-hand experience. It is clear that Cassius is the natural leader of the pack, full of the spitfire force, pre-adolescent energy and unformed talent.

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Seasons Greetings from the Teen Editorial Staff!

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December is inherently a month of celebrations. Initially, one might think these “celebrations” are limited to those regarding holidays. But here at TeenTix, we think of celebrations as much more.

This month, we hope to celebrate the people in our lives, the things we have, and of course, celebrate the impact of art on our lives.

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TeenTix in Tacoma Day!

​Join us to celebrate our Tacoma Arts Partners on December 8th!

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TeenTix is celebrating our Tacoma Arts Partners this Saturday, December 8th!

There will be activities and events at the Tacoma Arts Musuem, the Museum of Glass, Tacoma Arts Live, The Grand Cinema, and MORE. Plus, join our #selfiescavengerhunt challenge and you'll be entered to win free swag! Keep reading to learn more. FULL SCHEDULE

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The TeenTix Newsroom is Expanding!

Apply to Become a Teen Reviewer TODAY!

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Made for teens to connect with other like-minded youth and write about art, the TeenTix Newsroom is a place for teen arts lovers to practice their writing skills! The TeenTix Newsroom is led by the Teen Editorial Staff - 5 teens who curate the review portion of the TeenTix blog. Editorial Staff members decide which art events to cover each month, then assign teen writers to review them. How It Works:

Along with a teen editor, who will then edit their work, teen writers will attend an arts event for free. Afterwards, they’ll write a review that will be published on the TeenTix blog - so this is your chance to share your opinion on Seattle arts! For each review, writers will work individually with an editor on the Teen Editorial Staff to polish their writing for publication. Teen writers can pop in to the monthly newsroom gatherings to meet with the Teen Editorial Staff, receive side-by-side editing, and learn more about the craft of arts writing. Plus, there are snacks! This is YOUR CHANCE to join this fun, supportive environment, and become a published writer! Also, teen writers are eligible to receive a stipend of up to $20 per review. Apply to be part of the TeenTix Newsroom TODAY!

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