SPARK is a six week long artistic development residency for individual artists creating work for young audiences. Artists receive a $1500 stipend, a $250 materials budget, access to Filament Theatre’s space and stock, and administrative and artistic development support from Filament’s staff and youth artistic teams throughout the residency. Artists are anticipated to work 70 total hours over the lifespan of the residency (10 hours of prep, 60 hours of project development).
Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to apply. We are particularly excited about innovative, unexpected, and unusual work for young audiences.
Filament Theatre creates work for, by, and with young audiences. With SPARK, youth also curate the entire experience. With support and skillbuilding from Filament’s artistic and education directors, a curatorial team of 3rd-6th graders are entirely responsible for the selection of up to three SPARK artists. At least 2 out of 3 residency slots will be allocated to BIPOC artists.
SPARK is particularly suited to support projects that are in early phases of conception or development. Artists can use their month at Filament to see a project through from start to finish (like a shadow puppet short film!), or to make significant progress toward a longer-term goal (like a draft of a children’s novel!). Although the nature of each development process will vary depending on the project itself, SPARK projects must culminate in a final presentation – work-in-progress showing, exhibition, final performance, etc. – to share with Filament’s audience. Previous SPARK projects include a choose-your-own adventure play, a musical video game, and a community-sourced mural.
Artists should be enthusiastic about working with young people, and bring a spirit of openness to allowing youth input to impact or transform their project. Experience working with young people is not necessary; Filament will provide resources to support your collaboration with our youth artistic teams.
No, really. We’re not kidding. Eight, ten, and twelve year olds are going to read your application. Please keep them in mind as you are writing.
SPARK’s artists have the opportunity to work in Filament’s flexible 1850 square foot black-box theatre and spacious storefront workspace in Portage Park. Artists will have access to our full facility and stock, which includes: two large street-facing windows (perfect for displays!), kitchenette, dressing room, risers, platforms, cafe tables, lighting equipment, sound equipment, black curtains, a collection of props, sewing machine, costumes, and fabric. Filament staff and board ensure that all space use meets or exceeds current CDC recommendations.