Students in the 2015 Jack Straw Blind Youth Project

Blind Youth Audio Project 2015

We started this year’s program by writing and recording a song with the YES 1 students to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Musician Levi Fuller and writer Jesse Minkert collaborated on lyrics and Levi wrote the tune, then performed and recorded it with the students in Jack Straw’s studio, along with teaching artist Bill Horist on guitar. Another group of students produced a flash drama PSA about the ADA written by Jesse Minkert.

Later that same night, YES 2 students participated in an African drumming workshop with Kofi Anang in studio 1 and recorded flash dramas in studio 2 with Susie Kozawa and Christine Brown.

Over the following weeks, YES 2 students worked with Jack Straw teaching artists to write and record more music and perform and record flash dramas in the Jack Straw studios. Musicians Bill Horist and Amy Denio collaborated with one group of students on writing and producing an original song, while writer Jesse Minkert and sound artist Susie Kozawa worked with another group to produce a series of flash dramas using their voices and sound effects they created in the studio.

For their day in the studio, the SCILS students produced flash dramas in studio 2 and participated in a tap dancing workshop with dancer Mark Mendonca, a current resident artist in the Jack Straw Artist Support Program, in studio 1.



Kofi Anang

Born in Pakro, in the eastern region of Ghana, Kofi Anang exhibited talent as both a dancer and musician from his youth. After graduating from the University of Ghana’s…

Bill Horist sitting, holding an electric bass, looking at a student playing electric guitar

Bill Horist

Seattle-based guitarist Bill Horist has played on dozens of records and has performed throughout North and Central America, Europe and Japan; collaborating with numerous leading lights in a beguiling…

Amy Denio

Amy Denio

Amy Denio is a composer, improviser, singer, and multi-instrumentalist whose main instruments are voice, alto saxophone, clarinet, accordion, electric guitar, and bass. She was inducted into the Seattle Jazz…


Susie Kozawa

Susie Kozawa, a sound artist, composer and performer, works mostly with sound collages and site-specific installations, in which the gathering of sounds is a primary activity. She explores different…

Photo of Jesse Minkert

Jesse Minkert

Jesse Minkert’s work has appeared in about fifty literary journals including the Cream City Review, Confrontation, Mount Hope, the Floating Bridge Review, the Minetta Review, Poetry Northwest, Common Knowledge…