The New Guard: Teen Arts Leadership Society

TeenTix invites high school students with a passion for the arts and an interest in arts leadership to apply to join The New Guard: Teen Arts Leadership Society.


The New Guard offers 13- to 19-year-olds the opportunity to play a central role in guiding TeenTix, while progressing through an ever-deepening curriculum in arts leadership. Committed members who have served at least 20 hours on the TeenTix Steering Committee will be matched with mentors at TeenTix partner organizations. Mentorships may focus on arts management, arts marketing, fundraising, or artistic planning.

Frequently Asked Questions

So, what do you actually DO at your meetings? Most importantly, we eat snacks. Second most importantly, New Guard meetings consist of the following things: 

- Getting updates on what's happening with TeenTix and helping to steer the program in the right direction and keep it accountable to teens

- Giving "secret shopper" reports of our experiences using our TeenTix passes "in the field"

- Planning special events at TeenTix partner organizations

- Vetting new prospective partner organizations

- Meeting staff at partner organizations, learning about their jobs, and answering their questions about how they can do a better job of serving young audiences

- And eating snacks!

How do I apply to join The New Guard?  Applications are closed for the '17-'18 cohort! Want to request an extention, or advocate for a position? Contact [email protected].

How old do I have to be to join The New Guard? You must be 13- to 19-years-old to apply for The New Guard.

Do I have to be a TeenTix member to apply for The New Guard? Yes. TeenTix membership is completely free. Join now!

I just found out about this and I only have one year of high school left. Is there a way for me to move to the mentorship phase more quickly? Yes! You can complete your hours more quickly by volunteering for TeenTix. Please let us know that you are interested in doing this on your application.

When does The New Guard start? Our first meeting of the year will be in mid-August at the Seattle Center.

Where do New Guard meetings take place?  Meetings take place in the Armory at Seattle Center.

How much does it cost to participate in The New Guard? Participation in The New Guard is free—all costs are covered by TeenTix. 

Do I have to have arts experience to do this? No! All you need is a vague interest in learning more about arts leadership. Some New Guard participants come from arts backgrounds, and some don’t.

Can I get school credit for doing this? In the past, members of this group have received service learning credit through their schools. Since requirements for credit vary from school to school, please consult your service learning advisor. If you are eligible for credit, we are happy to complete the necessary paperwork from your school.

What is the time commitment? New Guard meetings are held twice a month, from 5:30 - 7:00, at Seattle Center. Members must commit to attending these meetings. Additional time commitments for sub-committees and mentorships will be based on your interests and availability.

The New Guard is supported by Seattle University Arts Leadership programs.

For more information, please email [email protected] or call 206-233-3959




Bella DeVaan, President

Bella DeVaan is a senior at Lakeside School and a student ambassador for Save the Children Action Network, the Gates Foundation’s Teens Take Action program, and local maternal health organization One by One. She joined the New Guard to experience how arts contribute to and intersect with community outreach, charitable action, and social change throughout the city. Bella is a guitarist and singer/songwriter who loves to create and consume film, dance, and visual art.

Esmé DeCoster, Vice President

Esmé DeCoster to Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences and is a junior. The arts have been part of her life for a long time, since her first play at age 5. The arts organizations of Seattle have all been so nice and helpful to all ages. TeenTix has helped her go to so many many performances of all kinds, and I she so happy to be able to work more with the organization that has helped me branch out so much and has made the arts so easily accessible to so many teens.

Katherine Draves, External Communications

Katherine is a junior at The Center School and is thrilled to be a part of the New Guard. She is the producer of 14/48:HS, winner of the 2015 Teeny Award for Best Youth Engagement Program. She also works with many other theaters including MAP Theater, Seattle Public Theater and Ghost Light Theatricals. Katherine is a member of her school’s award-winning Model United Nations team and enjoys using her Teen Tix pass at local theaters, Jet City Improv, and the Seattle Art Museum.

Meg Shepherd, Internal Communications

Meg Shepherd is a senior at Ballard High School and in her third year with the New Guard. She currently does costumes, sound, ASM-ing, and acting at BHS. In her time not spent at school or on tumblr, she daydreams about running a freelance wood carving business that focuses exclusively on full body carvings of Broadway stars that only made it as B/B+ list Hollywood actors. She enjoys long walks on the beach, but really just isn't up for picnics.

Wendy Zhen, Events & Volunteers

Wendy is a junior at the Overlake School. She joined The New Guard in 2014 when she moved to Seattle from Beijing, China. Wendy does oil painting, and plays the flute and cello.

Crystal Ma, Fundraising & Special Initiatives

Crystal is a Senior attending Interlake High School in Bellevue, Washington. She enjoys splish-splashing in a pool, belting out French Horn fanfares in Brahms 4, and dreaming about sleeping in a mattress of freshly minted Benjamins--basically anything to avoid washing her paint brushes. She joined the New Guard in hopes of spreading the Gospel of TeenTix, and baptizing other teens into the hidden glories of a small plastic card!

Isabel Schmidt, Teens Count Liaison

Isabel is currently a sophomore at Garfield High School and is just overjoyed to be part of the New Guard! She joined the group to find people who shared her passion for the arts, to spread the magic of TeenTix, and to inspire the world with creative art. Isabel loves to be surrounded by deep thinkers/philosophers, and considers herself to be somewhat of an 18th century English romantic. She is a budding artist herself who is artistically interested in writing, crafts, pressed leaves, and colors. But mostly, she delights in admiring and being blown away by the wonders of visual art, spending hours at a time in museums and galleries. Using her Teentix pass, however, she has expanded her ideas of the meaning of art by seeing dance performances and plays, as well as going to museums. In school, she enjoys history as well as science and, in her spare time (not spent in school or gazing at art) she runs, plays the cello, travels, explores nature, and writes long letters.

Henry Hossner

Henry was born in Ballard, Washington but now lives in West Seattle.  He loves all forms of art, specifically theatre and music. He is 18 years of age and goes to West Seattle High School. He plays piano for the jazz band at his school.


Abbey Scobee

Abbey is an 11th grader at Nathan Hale high school. Abbey loves the theater and wants to some day be an actress. She also wants to travel the world. Abbey joined TeenTix this year to get more involved in our local arts and to meet teens like her.


Emily Koya

Emily is currently a senior, and joined the New Guard in the fall of 2014. She was born in New York, and she also spent eight years in Tokyo. Emily loves playing classical and jazz piano and the clarinet in the pit orchestra.


Katie Dreessen

Katie is a 10th grader from Lynnwood and has been involved in the arts world for a very long time. She has been getting into photography and and has been involved in musical theatre and music since kindergarten grade. She loves seeing shows at the 5th Avenue and aspires to someday perform in that theater. She is so happy to be a part of this amazing organization.

Lydia Wen

Lydia is a Senior at Bellevue High School. She joined the New Guard in 2015 hoping to be a great advocate for the arts. She loves Teentix, as it gives her countless opportunities to enjoy the arts at a low price. Lydia plays the piano and the cello. She has been playing the piano for 12 years and the cello for 6 years. She is a cellist of the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra as well as many other chamber groups and ensembles, and is currently the principal cellist of the Bellevue High School Chamber Orchestra. Apart from music, Lydia also loves to dance ballet and draw.

Caleb Ren

Caleb Ren is a senior attending Bellevue High School, but he really wants to be a Frenchman named “Maurice.”  His favorite fruit is the mango.  An aspiring Disney Imagineer, Caleb considers his role models to be Alf, the entire Addams family, and 2007 Britney Spears.  Caleb works at Chipotle part-time and frequently attends the Seattle Symphony because he is recently single and just trying to get back out there.  He is extremely excited to be part of the New Guard (but admittedly, less excited than when he heard “new car”) and hopes to introduce music and comedy to people who don’t typically engage in the arts.

Sarah Pickles

Sarah is a junior at Mercer Island High School. She joined the New Guard in 2015 because she loves to experience the arts, and believes that they play a very important role in people’s lives. Outside of school, Sarah loves to do ballet, draw, and read.

Emily Kim

Emily Kim is a junior at Mercer Island High School. She joined The New Guard in 2015 in order to be more involved with the Seattle arts scene as well as to help make the arts accessible for all teens to enjoy. She loves music and plays both the piano and the violin. Other than music, Emily also loves photography and traveling.

Emily Hardwick

Emily Hardwick is new to the New Guard this year. She is going through her junior year at Garfield High, and is involved in theatre, vocal jazz, and choir at school. Her favorite activities involve acting, singing, paddle boarding, scrapbooking, and anything to do with dogs.


Tova Gaster

Tova is a freshman at Garfield High School. TeenTix has inspired her to grow as both a consumer of art and an artist, and she is excited to be a part of the New Guard! She likes using her TeenTix pass to see theater and visit museums, and loves the community and opportunity TeenTix creates. She enjoys reading, cats, rainy days, and doodling.

Gaebriel Wilson

Gaebriel is a senior at Auburn Riverside High School and featured artist for RAW: natural born artists in Seattle. Along with being the public relations officer for Thespian Troupe 5560, she is the stage manager for the Auburn Riverside Theatre. Gaebriel spends her days floating between jewelry projects, art projects, and theatre tech when she's not in school or at work. She uses her TeenTx pass mostly for the SAM, Seattle Symphony, and Jet City Improv. Gaebriel loves to play any instrument she can get her hands on, but plays mainly Bari Sax and Contra-Alto Clarinet. One day, Gaebriel hopes to be a graphic design guru who lives in a tiny house somewhere in Amsterdam filled with succulents and plenty of kombucha.

Emma Forman

Emma is a junior at Garfield High School. She is passionate about empowering youth to take an active role in their community, whether through the arts, citizen science, or civic engagement. She has been in multiple full-length plays, including The Anatomy of Grey, and continues to participate in acting opportunities. Emma is also proud to play the saxophone in GHS's Jazz Band A. She has a dog, a hedgehog, and a unicorn and she is inspired by TeenTix's mission.

Elan Ma

Elan is a junior at Mercer Island High School. She joined the New Guard in 2016 in hopes to help make the wonderful art scene in the Seattle area accessible for all teens to enjoy. After school, you'll probably find her at H.E.L.P club, an endeavor she started with her friend to help the homeless in Seattle. Also in her free time, she loves to draw, paint, and explore different forms art - especially through using her TeenTix pass!