One of the things I love about running my own business is that I get to choose exactly what organizations I want to throw my weight behind and help. It’s great to donate to a charity or a non-profit but it is WAY more fulfilling and exciting to take what I do for a living and give back something better than a simple check in the mail.
When I saw an opportunity to give a little branding and overall image boost to the local musical Annie Jr. at the Upper Main Line YMCA I felt compelled to jump in and contribute my time and skills. I wanted to give the kids an experience that adult actors usually pay me for, a great portrait for the parents who also worked and supported this and some massive visual branding for the musical as a whole because everyone involved was putting so much into it.
I reached out Janelle Brandberg who is the Family Services Director at the Upper Main Line YMCA and she was kind enough to let me come in for a day and shoot headshots for all the leads in the musical. Packing up my entire studio and going on-site for a day is usually a white glove service reserved for some of the larger clients that book me but in this case it was my time to give something back.
Well the answer is simple. On one hand, my family has been a part of the YMCA since around the time I was born. I learned to swim there as a baby, my mother worked at the YMCA for most of her career and now that I have children of my own we are always engaging with the YMCA because of their focus on family.
However, it is mainly about the arts too. As a kid who had little-to-no athletic ability I turned to music as my thing. Marching band, concert band, jazz band; I did them all. What would I have done if these programs didn’t exist and/or didn’t have the support of the faculty, parents, and overall community? I’m truly thankful that we had people around us that really took the time to care and support us through our musical ventures. I can only pray that kids today have access to many of the same resources I did.
That’s why we have to keep this alive. Not every kid is an academic whiz or a strong athlete. Having a broad based arts programs in and around the community gives kids something else to inspire them and be good at.
I’ve seen firsthand how much work, support and heart Janelle and the parents are putting into this and honestly whatever I have contributed pales in comparison.
The UMLY Players will be performing Annie Jr. There are so many talented kids and adults involved; you will be incredibly impressed by what you see!
If you’re looking for a nice event for the family, please consider going to support this wonderful cast. Ticket sales will begin Monday, March 27th by calling or visiting the Upper Main Line YMCA (610-647-9622). Tickets cost $12 for adults; $10 for seniors and $8 for children. Performances will be at Wayne United Methodist Church (210 S. Wayne Avenue).
Thursday, April 20 @ 7pm
Friday, April 21 @ 7pm
Saturday, April 22 @ 2pm
Saturday, April 22 @ 7pm
Thursday, April 27 @ 7pm
Friday, April 28 @ 7pm
Saturday, April 29 @ 2pm
Saturday, April 29 @ 7pm