TODAY CO-ANCHOR MEREDITH VIEIRA AND BEST-SELLING AUTHOR CHUCK PALAHNIUK TO ADDRESS THE SCHOLASTIC ART & WRITING AWARDS RECIPIENTS OF 2007 AT CARNEGIE HALL


Exceptional Young Artists and Writers From Across the Nation Celebrate Their Awards and Scholarships with Families, Friends and Teachers
 
Readings by Tony Award Winner Blair Brown, Tony Award Nominee Amy Ryan and OBIE Winner Jason Butler Harner, with a Special Performance by Rising Pop Artist Kiley Dean

New York, NY (June 12, 2007) -- Friday, June 15th promises to be an exhilarating and unforgettable night for the nation’s most talented young artists and writers. 
The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, a national program that offers early recognition of creative teenagers and scholarship opportunities for graduating high school seniors, will honor the 2007 Award recipients at a ceremony at Carnegie Hall.  This year, nearly 500 of more than 1,100 national recipients will travel to New York City to be recognized.  The recipients’ achievements will be celebrated by family, industry leaders, educators and patrons, along with TODAY co-anchor Meredith Vieira, New York Times best-selling author of Fight Club and Rant Chuck Palahniuk and up-and-coming pop artist Kiley Dean.
 
Meredith Vieira will be the featured guest speaker, and Chuck Palahniuk will deliver the evening’s keynote address.  Special guest Kiley Dean will perform, and Tourie and Damien Escobar, the talented teenage brothers who make up Nuttin’ But Stringz, will play their unique brand of music, which combines classical violin sounds with pop, R&B and hip-hop.  Tony Award Winner Blair Brown will read selected works by Award recipients.  Ms. Brown will be joined by Tony Award nominee Amy Ryan and OBIE winner Jason Butler Harner from The Coast of Utopia.
 
“For eighty-four years, The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards have honored the talent of young artists and writers from around the country for their outstanding achievements,” said BJ Adler, executive director of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. “We look forward to celebrating the accomplishments of The Award Recipients of 2007 with our distinguished guests and to broadening their horizons through a workshop series, giving them the confidence and encouragement to pursue careers in the creative industries.”
 
As part of the celebration, select artwork and writing will be on public display at Reeves Contemporary in the heart of Chelsea’s art district in New York City, from June 14-16, 2007.  Other nationally recognized works will also be on display at the Alliance Gallery in New York City from June 14-16, 2007.  The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, the nonprofit organization that administers The Awards, will also offer national recipients a special workshop series in New York City, including cultural and career seminars at professional institutions, such as the Guggenheim Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the New York Public Library, Atlantic Theater Company and Sotheby’s.
 
Since Scholastic founded the program in 1923, The Awards have honored distinguished past recipients such as Richard Avedon, Truman Capote, Robert Indiana, John Lithgow, Bernard Malamud, Joyce Maynard, Joyce Carol Oates, Sylvia Plath, Robert Redford, Andy Warhol and Sherley Anne Williams, who received recognition when they were in high school.
 
Each year, the Alliance receives thousands of works of art and writing, submitted through 82 regional affiliate programs across the nation for consideration in 25 categories of art and writing.  The submissions are evaluated locally and nationally by a panel of jurors comprised of renowned artists, authors, educators and arts professionals.  Notable past and current jurors include Elizabeth Bishop, Judy Blume, Billy Collins, Robert Frost, Frank McCourt, Philip Pearlstein, George Plimpton, Faith Ringgold, Andy Rooney, KiKi Smith and William Saroyan. 
 
About The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards and the Alliance
The Awards program continues to provide a platform for creative expression for millions of students across the country. The Alliance brings outstanding visual art and writing created by teenagers to a national audience and encourages their creative journey and career development.  In addition to awarding annual scholarships to top portfolio award recipients, the Alliance collaborates with colleges across the country that make an additional $1.5 million in financial aid available to award recipients with exceptional promise. 
 
The Awards program and the work of the Alliance are made possible through the support of Scholastic Inc., the Title Sponsor.  Presenting Sponsors include The New York Times Company, Accenture, Command Web Offset, The Diller - von Furstenberg Family Foundation, CDW-G and Hewlett Packard.  Generous leadership support is also provided by The Maurice R. Robinson Fund, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Trust. 
 
For more information, visit www.artandwriting.org.   
 
**Student interviews, samples of student artwork and a complete list of  The 2007 Scholastic Art & Writing Award Recipients are available upon request. **

 

Contacts:
Scholastic
Jennifer Boggs
212-343-6619
 
Scholastic
Cathy Lasiewicz
212-343-6570