Artists in Action - Your COMPAS News Round-Up


Accessing Art for All

Earlier this year, COMPAS partnered with two incredible organizations (Ally People Solutions and Partnership Resources Inc.) to bring some truly special artistic experiences to participants with special needs. They worked with six different Teaching Artists whose art forms ranged from drumming, puppetry, mosaics, photography, painting, and poetry. This month we recognized their work and the amazing art that came with it during a celebration at MIA on October 19th.

The space was filled with bright smiles and excited movement as the participants filed into the ballroom. It was a full house! The day started with some mask-making, water-coloring, drawing and admiring of the photos the participants took with Teaching Artist Mica Lee Anders.

“It gave them a way to express themselves,” Mica reminisced on the project. She was one of the six Teaching Artists who worked with participants from both PRI and Ally on photography. “It gave a voice for those who can’t speak and they learned more about themselves.”

Later, Teaching Artist Malia Burkhart showed a video she made with participants using the puppets they created. They made puppets of themselves, as well as lions, monkeys and every other kind of zoo animal you could think of. We ended the day with mick laBriola drumming with a number of enthusiastic participants.

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A huge thank you to the six Teaching Artists (Mica Lee Anders, Malia Burkhart, mick laBriola, Katrina Knutson, Zoë Bird, and Anne Krocak) who dedicated time, love and creative passion to make this beautiful project a reality! We also want to give a huge thanks to the Minnesota State Arts Board for awarding us the Arts Access grant for this project.  

All photos by Max Haynes.

In Other News!

Smiles from SparklePop

Smiles from SparklePop

  • Break-dancing crew BRKFST had their final performance this month with the students they worked with during a residency at McDonough Recreation Center.

  • Another sold-out show from Teaching Artist and musician Charlie Maguire. This was his third time performing a musical tribute to Woody Guthrie’s autobiography “Bound for Glory” with Tony Glover and Pop Wagner

  • Mica Lee Anders unveiled her 8-foot tree mosaic which she created with the Saint Paul and Ramsey County Domestic Abuse Intervention Project (SPIP). She worked with SPIP community members and domestic abuse survivors to create a visual representation of their strength and resilience. Thank you to Greater Twin Cities United Way for teaming up to make this beautiful project happen!

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with their dancing students!


Charlie Maguire

at the musical tribute to Woody Guthrie’s autobiography “Bound for Glory”


Tree Mosaic

by Mica Lee Anders and SPIP Community Members