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Academics

Arts and Entertainment Courses

Arts and Entertainment Courses

Arts and Entertainment Pathways

Arts Ed Solutions

When: Tuesdays & Thursdays

  • 5th period, 1:40-2:35 p.m.
  • 6th period, 2:45-3:40 p.m.

Where: ATS South Lake Campus

About: Love acting, film, TV, theater? Gaining access to careers in the arts are commonly non-traditional, and usually involve, “who you know”. Learn from professionals who have made careers in the arts.

Working Arts professionals can teach you the current industry standards and practices and most importantly, become a connection.

ATS is partnering with industry professionals to be more relevant in today’s world. This program will focus on students of Color and giving them needed exposure and access in an industry needing their creativity and diversity. These institutions are looking to be more inclusive in arts leadership, administration, production and stage crafts.

Questions about enrollment? Contact memaake@seattleschools.org

Discover arts and entertainment internships

Steve Sneed, Arts and Entertainment Pathways Instructor at ATS

Steve Sneed is a longtime Seattle Resident and Performing artist. He is the Lead Creative of Education Solutions and is currently teaching Arts and Entertainment as an Instructor at Alan T. Sugiyama High School at South Lake, he is a Race and Social Justice Consultant for Pacific Northwest Ballet, and performs professionally as a commercial actor.


Music Producer Vitamin D Joining us for Fall 2022!

Music Producer Vitamin D will conduct a residency for one quarter, starting in the fall. He will attend twice a week, Tuesday and Thursday, during the Arts and Entertainment class session.

Derrick Brown (Vitamin D)
Derrick Brown (Vitamin D)

Derrick Brown, aka Vitamin D, is a Record Producer, DJ, and Audio Engineer raised in Seattle. He is widely acknowledged as one of the most important contributors to the Seattle hip-hop scene and beyond. Vitamin D has composed, produced, engineered and mixed countless classics in the music industry throughout his 27 year career.

He has worked with such artists as Macklemore, 50 Cent, Lil Wayne, Kendrick Lamar, Nas, and Snoop Dog to name a few. You can hear a sample of Vitamin D’s production on the television series Power’s opening theme song, Big Rich Town by 50 Cent. Vitamin D continues to support the community by whole-heartedly mentoring many up and coming artists in the Pacific Northwest music scene.

What activities will the students do?
Students will program beats, feature a vocalist and record a vocal performance, as well as learn a brief history of the art of DJ’ing and how it influences modern day music production

What skills will they learn?
Students will learn basic recording, midi-production, mixing fundamentals, song structure, and arrangements.

How will the student be a better person?
After this course, students will be able to express their self through music, building confidence and enhancing their social and networking skills.

What opportunities will they be exposed to?
Students will learn the essential skills to be in the music industry and build a career from a seasoned veteran. Students will also have the opportunity to meet like-minded students and build their network.

Here are examples of various audio careers:

Audio Production Services

  • Music Producer/Arranger
  • Recording Engineering
  • Mix Engineering
  • Mastering Services
  • Live Concert Recording Engineering
  • Live Concert Engineering
  • Music for Film
  • Analog to Digital Transfers

My goal is to ultimately build skills and passion for the music industry and culture


Erica Merritt will be joining us in the second quarter of 2022-23!

Erica Merrit

Erica Merritt is a singer songwriter, vocal coach, teaching artist and social and human services specialist with more than 25 years of experience as an artist and youth development worker in the greater King County region. She began teaching choir in 1998, and has continued to teach voice, songwriting and choir with organizations such as Langston Hughes, Arts Corps, MoPOP and the Creative Advantage.

Erica is a social justice advocate who believes Arts Education can close the opportunity gap for underserved youth. Erica’s work focuses on the belief that art changes the lives of those who experience it’s healing powers, just as art was a catalyst to change in her own life. Her teaching style includes laughter, critical thinking, self-reflection, transparency and fosters a growth mind-set. Her student-centered pedagogy creates a learning space where the student becomes the teacher. She has enjoyed the amazing opportunity to combine her passions of social well-being and music through the art of teaching. Erica takes great pleasure is supporting her students in becoming the best version of themselves.

This course is for those of you who like to strengthen your vocal ability. You will develop skills and techniques that professional singers utilize. Learn to sing with confidence and from the heart. Practice expressing the emotions behind the lyrics you sing. Explore how improving your pitch, tone, timing, and breathing methods can better your overall performance. Participants will practice giving and receiving constructive feedback. This class will prepare you for whatever is next in your artistic journey. All levels are welcome. It’s all about moving forward from wherever you are!

This course will include but is not limited to the following:

  • Diaphragmatic Breathing Technique 
  • Ear Training- instruction on how to develop a perfect pitch
  • Tone Building
  • Diction/Enunciation
  • Harmonization
  • Stage performance/Anxiety Buster Technique 
  • Individual voice coaching

Backstage Event Production & Lighting Design

Skylit Designs logo

SkyLit Designs is offering a class through their educational program, Backstage Bridges, where students will learn and explore the world of event production.

For the 2022-23 school year, ATS students will be doing a deep dive in Lighting Design using the same lighting software that’s being used right now in countless theaters in our community and thousands worldwide.

Additionally, students will be comprehending the infrastructure of the Paul Robeson Performing Arts Center and gain skills to produce their own events.

Backstage Bridges logo

Students will be expected to challenge the way they see the arts and it’s impact on under-served communities. The goal of this collaboration is to enhance student innovation and encourage leadership and teamwork.

Learn more about Backstage Bridges

Learn more about SkyLit Designs, LLC

Introduction to Youth Radio

Teacher: Masao Yamada

When: Wednesdays, 8:45-9:23 a.m.

Where: ATS South Lake Campus

About: elements of creating and recording your own podcast, creating a show for radio, how to conduct an on air interview, marketing for radio, journalism/investigative reporting, and event planning for radio.

Questions about enrollment? Contact memaake@seattleschools.org

Discover radio internship opportunities

About Masao

Masao is a community leader who has founded youth programs/organizations with a focus on career development, arts equity, civic engagement, social justice, and more. Masao has recently developed and guided youth in co-founding a youth led/operated radio station. Ground Zero Radio is on a mission to build community relationships and execute career connected learning programs with partner organizations that empower youth to take ownership of their futures. 

Their efforts are centered to serve youth who have an interest in pursuing careers related to multimedia and the entertainment industry with focuses on radio, broadcasting, podcasting, journalism, audio/video production, marketing, social media, event planning, and civic engagement. GZ Radio officially launched Phase 1 of their 3 phase launch in July of 2021. The youth can be seen creating content through their social media platforms. 

Storytelling & the Filmmaking Process

Teacher: Anthony Tackett, Cinematographer & Producer 

When: Mondays & Fridays, 1st period, 8:45-9:45 a.m.

Where: ATS South Lake Campus

About: Storytelling and the Filmmaking process, preparing the students for apprenticeship on the field with industry workers. The lessons are not just about Entertainment but also communications, science, team dynamics and confidence as they express their emotions through art. If this is something you are interested in we hope you consider join our class as we talk Show Biz!

Questions about enrollment? Contact memaake@seattleschools.org

Discover storytelling and filmmaking internship opportunities

About Anthony – Storytelling from Behind the Lens

Anthony Tackett, Storytelling and Filmmaking Instructor at ATS

Anthony Tackett has worked 21 years as a storyteller and filmmaker for organizations such as UW, Live Nation, Microsoft, Amazon, Africatown, Rainer Avenue Radio, One Vibe Africa, etc. His company, Abstract Media’s focus is to uplift and empower his clients to realize their vision and help build their brand. 

He is currently serving on the board of the Seattle Film Task Force who’s mission is to help reshape and restore the Washington Film Commission to better serve an equitable film community. He stepped down as co-chair but is still on the board and focuses on the DEI conversation as it is a major problem in Seattle. Tackett is also the Founder of the Seattle Filmmakers of the African Diaspora (411 strong) which provides a space for Black filmmakers who want a larger network, more resources, and gain (or share) wisdom in the craft. We hold workshops on Producing, Distribution, Camera technology, etc. It has helped people realize their vision and inspired many productions around the world. 

As volunteer he has helped restore Life Enrichment Bookstore, consulted Africatown’s Media Team, assisted in the launching of Rainer Avenue Radio, taught production classes to the youth and elders of the community, and is currently attending classes at The Evergreen State College Tacoma.