1. AWS Talent Showcase 8.26.23-462WM
[ August 29, 2023 by admin 0 Comments ]

Season 1 of the Artist Workshop Ends with a Successful Showcase

Washington State has always been a breeding ground for creative brilliance, with talented individuals emerging from the nooks and crannies of small towns and quiet suburbs. From painters to athletes to musicians whose songs become timeless, the Evergreen State boasts a rich tapestry of talent. Thanks to organizations like The Shyan Selah Foundation and Brave New World who created programs such as The Artist Workshop – in conjunction with the Washington State Department of Commerce –  the landscape for artists is evolving. The remarkable success of the first annual Artist Workshop Summer Showcase is proof of that.

Shyan Selah backstage at the Showcase

The inaugural season of The Artist Workshop in 2022-2023 was nothing short of spectacular. It is abundantly clear that this initiative has left an indelible mark on Washington’s cultural scene. Speaking with the founder and creator, Shyan Selah, one can sense the palpable passion and dedication that went into crafting this event. Selah’s vision for this endeavor was nothing short of ambitious, and it was inspiring to hear him describe the inception of the project and its growth over the years. 

When asked how an event like this came to be, Selah thoughtfully responded “This event is the offspring of a lot of hard work and soulful intention to progress the industrial and commercial entertainment artistic talent in our community. To try and garner the same energy and respect around the arts community as there is, say sports. I wanted there to be an opportunity for young talent to show off the hard work and dedication it takes to be in this industry. Show up with some Federal Way spirit, and leave it all on the stage. I’m so proud of these artists for the progress they’ve shown over the past few months.”

Establishing the Artist Workshop program and the talent showcase required meticulous planning, securing adequate funding, and demonstrating the viability of such an event. Through Selah’s unwavering perseverance and belief in the community’s burgeoning stars, along with the joint production efforts of Brave New World and the Shyan Selah Foundation, we witnessed firsthand the resounding success of the talent showcase.

While most of the performers of the showcase had some kind of experience with being on stage already, when asked how it felt to perform in this showcase, their responses all shined light to the fact of how special an occasion this was. 

“It was amazing!” musician and vocalist Gavi beamed. “I had tons of support at the show from my family, who’s never been to any of my shows before and it was surreal. And getting to know so many new people and carrying their words of encouragement around has been an uplifting experience and I can’t wait till someone out of this group makes it big!” 

Shaflo couldn’t contain the smile on her face while she replied, “It was breathtaking to feel the energy in the room and be amongst the few who worked hard and made it through the process! I did a lot of performances but this one was one that set my heart on fire and gave me a feeling that I’ve never felt before.” 

One of the most heartwarming aspects of this event was the genuine camaraderie and support that permeated every corner of the venue. Despite the stakes being high, with the prize being a professionally recorded song produced by an accredited producer, every participant displayed a remarkable spirit of encouragement for their fellow artists. 

Backstage and in the hallways, the air was thick with mutual support and enthusiasm. Tazz Enrico spoke to this fact when asked what the best part of participating in the Showcase was and his reply came without hesitation: “Definitely the artists. You could tell that everybody was there for the same reason and had the same purpose and it was so beautiful to watch.” 

Midnite Blu

Midnite Blu held a similar sentiment for the best part of being in the showcase. “The best part for me was the Artist Workshop Rehearsal. Getting to know each other and being comfortable showcasing our talents in front of each other!”

This sense of unity was a testament to the exceptional character of the young artists and their commitment to fostering a thriving artistic community.

A huge round of applause goes out to everyone who helped make the Showcase the success that it was. To the performers, Ayana, CAZZI, Gavi, Jade, Midnite Blu, O.Z., Pure Art, Sahanie Shell, Shaflo, Shayla Jasmin, Tazz Enrico and Yung Shaedy; your performances were impactful and memorable to a wide array of guests.  Congratulations on being a part of something so pivotal to your local arts community!

The 2022-2023 Summer Showcase demonstrated the profound impact that dedication, community support, and a belief in local talent can have. This showcase not only celebrated the diverse and extraordinary talents of Washington, but also served as a point of inspiration for aspiring artists everywhere – a point that looks to be underscored with Season two of The Artist Workshop program for Washington State’s artistic community.

Artist Workshop Staff takes a photo with Auditioning Talent
[ January 19, 2023 by admin 0 Comments ]

The Artist Workshop Holds First Round of Talent Auditions

The Artist Workshop held talent auditions for a select number of workshop members last Saturday in preparation for a major talent showcase this summer. Singers, songwriters, rappers, musicians, actors, models, and aspiring entertainers presented their talent in front of Artist Workshop producers and team, including program founder, Shyan Selah. Shyan, a multi-talent himself, has 20 years experience in the entertainment industry as a singer/songwriter, rapper, recording artist, actor and model.

The four hours of auditions last weekend were the first round of an ongoing series of audition events to be held in conjunction with Artist Workshop monthly events.  These productions, co-presented by Brave New World and Washington’s Department of Commerce, give young aspiring professional entertainment artists, entrepreneurs, and athletes in South King County the access to established professionals in their chosen field of interest. Each month participants come to learn about various aspects of the entertainment industry including production, marketing, deal-making, and the creative process. This month’s audition was the first event that gave participating artists the stage to show their talent.

Artist Workshop Founder, Shyan Selah addresses Auditioning Talent

“This process will be a little different than your typical audition experience in LA or New York,” stated Shyan in his opening remarks to the Artist Workshop talent participants. Audition attendees stayed in the room and took turns standing on stage to not only showcase their talent, but also give a quick interview that included stating why they were there and what they hoped to accomplish with their artistry. 

The auditions began with a variety of mostly musical acts, including solo singers and rappers who performed a mix of original songs and covers. A couple of aspiring fashion models also presented their runway walk for the judges before the attendees broke for lunch provided by Panera. Each aspiring talent was walked through a professional level audition experience including questions from the Artist Workshop staff and the audience. These questions ranged from  why they picked the song they did, to what made them decide to wear what they did that day. All contestants were judged on 5 factors: Talent, Skill, Vibe, Confidence, and Passion.

“In over 20 years of outreach that includes imparting professional expertise to students from middle school to college, it’s been most beneficial to the participants when the education is combined with real professional experience from their field of interest,” says Shyan. “This has always been our style and through the Artist Workshop program we get to do that at an even greater level of impact. I’m proud of what the Artist Workshop is doing and excited for the talent in our region to have this access.”

At the end of the audition day all the talent contestants were given the opportunity to share with the Artist Workshop crew about what they thought and how they felt abut the process while receiving feedback as to what a typical audition judge or casting director would be looking for.

Overall, the first round of auditions for the Artist Workshop was a very promising start to what is expected to be an all encompassing showcase of talent to be presented to industry experts in music, theater, film, and television. These experts will come from key entertainment industry locations including Seattle, Los Angeles, New York, and Atlanta this summer. Regular audition dates will be announced via theartistworkshop.org and audition contestants will have the opportunity to repeat their audition in future sessions should they choose. Event producer Candice Richardson says the main focus will be on both finding and cultivating talent with the goal that the program will be able to place aspiring talent in real-life career opportunities. 

“We’ve always known how talented our young people are in the Northwest,” says Candice. “The Artist Workshop is poised to discover and nurture some truly exceptional talent in the coming months.”

Pictured: Shyan Selah speaking alongside Natasha Hill, Neal Pogue, Martin Guigui, and Eddie Levert, Jr. for The Artist Workshop
[ October 27, 2022 by admin 0 Comments ]

The Musician Workshop: A legendary panel including Grammy winners, reps for Rock and Roll Hall of Famers, State Senate candidates and more!

This month’s Artist Workshop was a HUGE success with LEGENDARY panelists on hand to talk to attendees all about the steps it takes to become a professional musician in the entertainment industry.

Headed by creator of The Artist Workshop, founder of the The Shyan Selah Foundation, Creative Entrepreneur/International Recording Artist, and lead panelist, Shyan Selah, October’s workshop also included:

  • 5x Grammy Award winner, Neal H Pogue (Tyler the Creator, Steve Lacy, Doja Cat, and more)
  • Award winning Musician and Film Director Martin Guigui
  • Entertainment Attorney turned U.S. Senate Candidate, Natasha Hill
  • and Eddie Levert, Jr. – son of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame lead vocalist of the O’Jays, Eddie Levert and manager of Grammy award winning Soul Artist, Gerald Levert

Each panelist gave their backstory about what it took for them to launch their careers, the hardest obstacles they’ve had to overcome, and the best acts they’ve worked with, before answering direct questions from the audience; which included everything from how to overcome self-doubt, to advice on what to do when someone’s infringed on your musical copyright, to how to network behind and beyond the stage. 

Check out the highlight video below:

The Artist Workshop Presents: The Musician

Full video of “The Artist Workshop: The Musician” will be made available November 1st for Artist Workshop members at theartistworkshop.org.