Zaccho Dance Theatre’s Youth Performing Arts Program (YPAP) is a collaborative youth arts education program developed to enhance classroom learning, educating both the mind and the physical body. YPAP was created to integrate our nationally renowned, highly innovative performance work with the life experiences and possibilities of our young neighbors in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point.
For nearly 30 years, YPAP has annually served 100-450 predominantly low-income, African American and diverse children of color by offering free during-the-school-day and extracurricular classes to students 6-18 years old; engaging over 5,600 youth to date. YPAP students explore their collective and individual potential in a professional setting through performance training, improvisation, personal research, and contemporary and aerial dance. Topics are drawn from issues that are relevant to our community. Over the years production themes have included the Voting Rights Act, the Underground Railroad, Negro League Baseball, the history of Hip Hop, environmental justice, and health and nutrition. Each year YPAP culminates in a professional-level performance for friends and family at the Zaccho Studio or a local professional performance venue.
YPAP has partnered with numerous K-12 schools and youth organizations in Bayview Hunters Point and Bernal Heights. Among them have included Dr. Charles Drew College Preparatory Academy, Dr. George Washington Carver Elementary, Paul Revere Elementary School, RISE University Preparatory, Malcolm X Academy Elementary, Muhammad University of Islam, Willie Mays Boys & Girls Club, the YMCA Bayview Beacon Afterschool Program, and the YMCA Urban Services Afterschool Program.