History

1996-1998



Upon graduation from California Institute of the Arts with the goal of establishing a contemporary dance company Misa Kelly in collaboration with her husband Stephen Kelly and friend Sarah Wingren set out to establish a non-profit for the company as well as Stephen Kelly's musical adventures. Seeking to service more than their own work Stephen suggested naming the organization the Future Traditions Foundation & they went to work designing it in such a way that the non-profit would also be able to serve other artists in the community.

The Co-Founders met with many artists in the community one on one and asked them to convey what their perceptions were with regard to their personal unmet needs. They then used this information as a springboard for drafting the bylaws of the Future Traditions Foundation (FTF.) The end result was a set of bylaws that was diverse enough to encompass the expressed needs within the community that were not being met by other local non-profits along with meeting SonneBlauma's own needs with ample growing room for a very large vision.

In November of 1998 The Future Traditions Foundation received its 501 (C) 3 status.

1998-2005

Seeking to address the observation that in the non-profit sector much more seems to be spent on administration & overhead than passing funds on to artists to manifest their projects FTF committed to operating with a streamline budget on 100% volunteer efforts working out of a free home office. They succeeded in funneling 98% of their funds directly into making projects happen and continue to do so to this day. During this period FTF focused on the following:

LAUNCHING SONNEBLAUMA working on a project to project basis.

UMBRELLA PROJECTS: We provided free umbrella services to local dance companies and independent artists taking on special projects such as providing dance classes for children of homeless parents at Christmas time.

GOLDEN GIFTS: Reaching out to low and moderate income households providing free tickets to local dance, theater, and music events. Also reached out to low and moderate income artists providing costume subsidies, free video documentation services, technical support for their productions, and rehearsal space subsidies made possible by funding from the Santa Barbara County Arts Organization.

PERFORMANCES & WORKSHOPS: Serving low and moderate income artists we produced workshops & studio showings at what was then Studio B and produced many dance and music events at Center Stage Theater and the Music Academy of the West.

2005-2011

In 2005 our Board of Directors decided to narrow the focus in order to better achieve the Foundation's goal of growing the Foundation's dance company, SonneBlauma Danscz Theatre. The singular focus enabled us to complete over 100 “happenings” locally, regionally, and internationally taking SonneBlauma's work to the next level.

In this time period SonneBlauma:

ACHIEVED INTERNATIONAL STATUS: In 2008 SonneBlauma became an international company traveling to Istanbul to perform at the AFL Kültür Merkezi with the Ziggurat Dance Company and to give a lecture demonstration and conduct a week long workshop at Çatı.


VENTURED TO THE BIG APPLE: in 2010 SonneBlauma performed in the COOL New York Dance Festival & engaged in their Perceptions of Performance in Guerilla Spaces project at the Met and MOMA.

PERFORMED IN MANY FESTIVALS AND SHOWCASES LOCALLY & IN NORTHERN AND SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: Venues and Festivals including:

2006, 2007, & 2010: SpectorDance Monterey Dance Festival – Emerging Choreographers Showcase

2009, 2010, 2011: Electric Lodge in Venice Beach as a part of their MAX10 series

2010: 5x5x5 Performance Art Series in Ventura, CA at the Sylvia White Gallery


2009, 2010, 2011: NECTAR performance series at Yoga Soup in Santa Barbara


2010, 2011: MixMatch Festival in L.A. ,  MAX10 at the Electric Lodge in Venice Beach


TOURED CALIFORNIA to mostly sold out venues as a part of our 3 Cities: 3 Choreographers project performing at Diavolo Theater in Los Angeles, Shall we Dance in Pacific Grove, Project 418 in Santa Cruz, & Center Stage Theater in Santa Barbara

EDUCATIONAL OUTREACH: We've provided free professional training to low and moderate income artists in the community by opening up our company class and hosting master classes led by world class educators.

DANCE AND MUSIC EVENTS: We've produced many events locally including:
Rhapsodies for Humanity and the Glorious Beings Award at the Music Academy of the West

Paul Livingstone in Concert at Center Stage Theater

SonneBlauma Studio showings in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 at the Montecito School of Ballet

Dance at the Top of the Hill in collaboration with Teresa Johnson at Center Stage Theater

Circle of Chi at the Music Academy of the West & the Unitarian Church

From Chopin to Senegal at the Music Academy of the West

UMBRELLA SERVICES: FTF offered umbrella services to others including Ray Tischer and his "Alzheimer's Art Video" project and Budhi Harlow's "Dance of the Forest African Rhythm project" with at risk youth.

COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES: in 2008 SonneBlauma was invited by Beth Megill to come teach a master class at Moorpark College and to present work on their Spring Concert. What a joy! Since then SonneBlauma has taught a Master class at Santa Barbara City College, been a guest artist in their 2010 Spring Concert Behind the Words, produced and presented the first UCSB Alumni Studio Showing, was invited to teach a partnering workshop at Westmont college, and volunteered to set a new work on Santa Barbara City College Students which was performed in the 2011 Santa Barbara Dance Alliance Kinesis concert. 

SB-ADaPT FESTIVAL: in June of 2011 SonneBlauma Danscz Theatre produced its first international Dance and Physical Theater Festival with events occurring within a three week time frame. 50 + Companies/Independent artists from 23 different cities and 5 different countries gathered to be a part of 22 different happenings at 6 different locations in 3 different cities.


It was a HUGE success and was incredibly well received by the community.


2012
2012 marked a big shift with SonneBlauma Danscz Theatre celebrating its 15th season.

The company morphed into ArtBark International on the web @
www.artbark.org expanding the scope of SonneBlauma's mission to welcome international cross-cultural exchange and foster the vision of building cultural bridges between different cities and countries meeting the needs of under-served "working class" professional artists from all walks of life. 

2012 projects include:

Affinity I: performances in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara - an artist performance exchange and
networking session including cross-cultural collaborations with Slovenia and the U.S.A.

Affinity II: performance in Paris, France - an artist performance exchange and networking session including cross-cultural collaborations with Slovenia, France and the U.S.A.

Affinity III: a mini-festival including master classes, artist networking sessions, presentations about art resources in New York and Los Angeles, performance exchange and celebration

2nd in our ADaPT Festival Series the RAW MATTERS ADaPT Special Festival www.rmadaptfest.comhttps://sites.google.com/site/adaptfestvienna/

Participation in NECTAR showcases in Santa Barbara, CA

Participation in the MixMatch Festival at the Miles Memorial Playhouse in Santa Monica, CA

Participation in the Electric Lodge MAX10 series in Venice Beach, California

ACTIVITIES 2013 and beyond please visit our calendar page at
www.artbark.org
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