DAA Announces Exhibition Calendar
Delta Arts Alliance proudly announces it 2018|2019 exhibition schedule, with a total of five exhibitions slated for the approaching academic year.

September will see the launch of the DAA exhibition calendar, as Ellis Gallery plays host to internationally-known, Oxford-based artist Jere Allen .

"Jere is an exceptional get for us and we are proud to bring such an esteemed artist back to the Delta. It's been some time since Mr. Allen has shown this way, and I'm excited to see how his pieces will take to our space and our community," said Executive Director Rori Eddie Herbison. "With the longevity Mr. Allen has enjoyed as an artist, his show will have a retrospective feel to it, allowing our patrons the opportunity to engage with older and newer works in his career.

"Of course, I'd be remiss, if I didn't make mention that the September 11 exhibition opening for Jere also serves as the organization's annual membership meeting. I'd encourage everyone to make plans to attend and to be a part of the Delta Arts Alliance," Herbison continued.

Wearable art will take center stage in early November in an exhibition entitled, ADORN: Artist-Made Clothing & Jewelry. Exhibition coordinator and featured artist Pat Brown explains, "[The show is about] four southern artists known for textiles and clothing and one jewelry artist [that] will present their one-of-a-kind, handmade, wearable clothing and copper/silver jewelry pieces."

The first exhibition of 2019 will also be the featured artist's first large-scale, one-man exhibition, as Rory Doyle and his breath-taking work on "Delta Cowboys" comes to the Ellis on Tuesday, February 19.

"There is a lot of good work on tap and we are proud to present this schedule and these opportunities to our community," Herbison added. "Our mission involves making the arts accessible and forging community interactions with the arts. I think this year's exhibition calendar goes straight toward that goal."
Summer Sun Sets at DAA
Another successful summer is in the books!

Delta Arts Alliance featured 28 art classes, four dance camps, and six Artists-in Residence placements at at three different partner sites in two counties and four cities. Students expressed their creativity in a variety of challenging and interesting activities, both here inside the Ellis Theater at Delta Arts’ homebase in Cleveland, as well as at locations in Bolivar and Washington County.

The seven-week summer arts schedule inside the Ellis consisted of four different classes each Tuesday and Thursday with a featured instructor at the helm of the morning and afternoon sessions. The summer program fell to the oversight of rising sophomore Allayne Thomas, one of two Duke University Robertson Scholar Residents working at Delta Arts. “Seeing the kids learning and applying arts vocabulary and techniques while creating their own unique masterpieces made me so appreciative I chose to work with Delta Arts Alliance this summer,” she shares. “The smiles on their face always brightened my day, and to know I was a part of ensuring the next generation has access to the arts is a definitive source of pride for me.

“When I first started, I had no idea that at the close of programming, we would serve just shy of 200 kids,” she adds. “I am humbled to have play a part in that outreach and can absolutely see the powerful impact Delta Arts Alliance’s work has in the community.”
The 2018 summer also saw DAA partner with perennial sites, Greenville Renaissance Scholars and Rosedale Freedom Project, while also forging first-time inroads with Leland Literacy Program and Deer Creek Promise Community. Artists-in-Residence K’na Rose, Mariah Hutchinson, Mary Katherine Honeycutt, Leah Allen and Chelsea Young created complex and challenging lesson plans, worked long, dedicated hours with students, and encouraged them to tap into their creativity. “From dance to visual arts, poetry and spoken word to songwriting and production, to our first foray into strings classes, we’re so proud of the time, effort and passion our arts educators showed and to the amount of love and care, compassion and commitment they poured into their students,” says DAA Executive Director Rori Eddie Herbison. “Our work has grown to a 365-day promise to provide arts education and access to the arts. It doesn’t happen without our roster of instructors and the positive, powerful partnerships we share with so many sites across the Delta.”

Delta Arts will now gear up for an exciting 2018|2019 academic year.
Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Layla Young. I have lived in Cleveland for 11 years, but before coming to Mississippi I lived in Virginia and Louisiana. I am currently attending Delta State University as a senior in the Delta Music Institute under the field of Entertainment Industry Studies. 
What attracted to you the arts and when did you commit to a career in the arts?
I've always been into entertaining and bringing a smile to those around me. When I lived in Louisiana, I started training to be a dancer, however when my family moved I began singing in the choir at church. Then, my senior year of high school I had a leading role in our senior musical,  Seussical the Musical , and my drive to be on stage began. 
What is your dream job?
I want to be a Broadway actress/philanthropist. It's always been my dream. I want to reach the pinnacle of staged theatre and from that point on, give back as much as I can. I've always felt like I'm supposed to give back wherever I am. That's why I can't wait until I have reached the platform to allow me to do this.
What was it about Delta Arts Alliance that attracted you to complete your internship here?
I'd assisted in the summer children's theatre program and was an Artist-in-Residence placed in Shaw prior summers. Rori took me under her wing and allowed me to grow in the arts. I knew she would help me understand the inner workings of an arts-focused non-profit.
Tell us a little about your responsibilities and expectations of your internship?
I have been the lead person in the office on a variety of projects. I was in charge of the band for 'A Night in the Arts' and I've had to be responsible for the organization's business card along with letters and art that needed to be given to various board members. I was responsible for weekly DAA sponsored events for the month of June while we were Hey Joe's charity of the month. I've been the lead person for DAA while we provided activities for the Grammy Museum's Family Day. Also, I am a correspondent for DAA and Grammy Museum. I am currently working on an inventory system that can be used for years to come. I am expected to be flexible and to help bring a smile to everyone's face. 
What have you learned in your time with DAA?
I have learned to recognize my own value and the credibility I can offer a team project. By this I mean, I am learning to value my own contributions to the projects that I work on. I tend to do not fully appreciate the things I do and effort I put in by viewing it as "this is what I'm supposed to do" instead of realizing that the full effort I put in. I am learning not to undermine the value in what I have to offer to a project.
What's next for you as you look to your senior year at DSU?
I will be spreading my love and knowledge of my school by being a Gridiron Girl (football recruiter) and Delta Diplomat (student recruiter). I will be working on my senior project, producing and directing 'Cabaret Night' that will be a collaboration between my department and the Delta Players, of which I am also President. I want to involve high school and community members. Lastly, I am working toward an internship after graduation in New York City where I plan to relocate and further pursue my career.   
In this week's #SNAPSHOT , Delta Arts Alliance Artist-in-Residence Mary Katherine Honeycutt stretches with her students at the Leland Literacy Camp under the direction of Delta Health Alliance, showing proper toning techniques, while also encouraging flexibility and mobility. "I will cherish their [the students] joy and awe as they created and explored movement," said Honeycutt. Her six-week residency in Washington county capped last week. Checkout the #PLAYBACK video ^^ above for more photos and information. >>>