Youth Theatre Interactions

HomeWhat we dohow we do it performancesHonors and Awards Contact

Mission Statement

History

Goals

Board of Directors

African DrumsWho We Are

Mission Statement

Youth Theatre Interactions, Inc. (YTI) provides professional instruction in the performing arts to Westchester County youth. With the support and participation of their parents, YTI nurtures creativity and pride in accomplishment while fostering discipline, confidence, and critical thinking in young people. Empowered by these attributes, our youth will become positive contributors to society. Furthermore, they will possess the skills necessary to proceed into the professional arts community.

Enriching the lives of young people through the arts.

Goals

  • Develop the artistic abilities of our students by encouraging full use of their creative potential

  • Instill an understanding and appreciation of the power of the arts

  • Promote the arts as a tool to develop students’ interpersonal and critical thinking skills

  • Encourage parents to participate in his or her child’s personal growth and artistic development

  • Maximize the connection between YTI students and the real world of the performing and arts by:
    • Employing professional artists as instructors
    • Providing workshops that prepare students for professional auditions
    • Exposing students to stage management and production techniques as part of their performance experience
    • Provide performance opportunities in a variety of diverse venues

back to top

History

IIn 1971, the Yonkers Community Action Program was asked to develop an after-school program that would help keep kids away from drugs and crime. James P. Hill, an employee of YCAP and professional musician, developed the School 12 Program, which began as a music workshop. Shortly after, Mr. Hill met Paul Kwame Johnson, then a theater major at Sarah Lawrence College. Mr. Johnson added his expertise to establish a new drama workshop to the program. In 1973, Hill and Johnson along with co-founder Turhan Von Brandon sought non-profit status for their program and renamed it Youth Theatre Interactions, Inc. (YTI), a performing arts school providing instruction free of charge to the youth of Yonkers. As interest and funding grew, the program was expanded to include dance workshops, photography, training in lighting design, sound and stage management. Today YTI provides instruction in drama, digital production, voice, music, and six different forms of dance. These services are provided at a modest fee to youth from all over Westchester County.

back to top

Founders

James P. Hill, Paul Kwame Johnson, Turhan Von Brandon

Kwame Johnson, Dr. Mary Lane & Jimmy Hill

YTI Founder Kwame Johnson,
Board President Dr. Mary Lane &
YTI Founder Jimmy Hill

Board of Directors

Elliott Black – Board President
Genia Flamia – Vice President
Howard Schatz – Treasurer
Chelsea Freeman – Secretary
Susan Borowitz
Symra Brandon
Lisa Copeland
Rashida Heslop
Deborah Hudson-Jenkins
Tom O’Keefe
Mary E. Lane
Jodi-Ann Lyons
Ricardo Lima

Suzanne Newman – ex officio
Mike Simons – ex officio

Advisory Board

Patricia Adams, Turhan Von Brandon, Michael Friedman, Dorothy Johnson, Dorothy Orr, Dave Sarran, Paula Redd-Zeman

back to top