NEXT STAGE Seattle (Young Artist Program) – Abbey Arts Presents, Seattle (Fremont Abbey Arts Center)

    Upper Fremont at 43rd
    On the #5 bus line and short walk to E line

    4272 Fremont Ave North
    Seattle, WA 98103

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    Supporting the next generation of Seattle area performing artists. 

    Take your arts career to the Next Stage!


     2018 NEXT STAGE Cohort!

    2018 Next Stage Cohort Features (left to right): Suzi Spooner (Visual Art), Jake Haber “Habes” (Music), Tyler Dobies (Poetry), Lynn Le (Visual Arts), Allison Morton (Visual Art, Poetry), Luke Martin (Music), Natalya Zrazhevskaya (Dance, Music), Tommy Ferguson (Film), Lindsey Moore (Visual Arts)

    This is an immensely skilled and diverse group of young artists whose talents range from blues music to illustration to graphic design to folk music to contemporary dance and film. Go ahead, click their names below and take a look/listen for yourself! – Matt Gano, Program Manager

    Luke MartinJake Haber “Habes”Lynn LeNatalya ZrazhevskayaLindsey Moore, Suzi SpoonerTyler Dobies, Sydney ChavanTommy Ferguson, Allison Morton, Nick Ryder


    2017 cohort  | 2016 cohort


    Abbey Arts in Seattle presents, NEXT STAGE:

    A professional development program for young artists 18-24. The ongoing program involves professional training designed to help emerging Seattle area musicians, performance poets, and visual artists grow towards a sustainable career in the arts.

    NEXT STAGE provides business & marketing advice for young artists 18-24 who are serious about their craft.

    A few words from former Next Stage artists: 

    “With access to the Fremont Abbey, I’m able to practice and write much more efficiently. Just use of the space has helped my creativity tremendously…I would of course recommend this program…It forces you to take not only your craft, but your business and brand more seriously.” – Katie Kuffel (2016) 

    “The Fremont Abbey Arts Center is a space for making. As a Poet and an Actor, I often feel ‘written out’ of social spaces and structures for life. It was such a huge gift to not only feel welcomed into the Abbey community, but respected and valued for my work.” – Sienna Burnett (2017)

    “I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunities offered from Abbey Arts, and would recommend the Next Stage program to all the young artists out there looking to share their creativity, soul, and voice.”         – Qin Tan (2017) 

    “I just wanted to express how incredibly grateful I am that you gave me the opportunity to join Next Stage and release my record at the Abbey. Your open-mindedness and generosity has truly changed my life.” – Anna Freedman (2017)

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    guest speaker Kevin Sur of Artist Home (Timber, Doe Bay Fest) discussing Booking and Promoting to a packed house 2/21/17

    NEXT STAGE Info:

    For Young Artists 18-24 years of age:

    (Must be 18-24 as of September)

    8-12 emerging artists will be selected for the Fall Session that runs September-April.

    Artists selected for the ’18-’19 session will be announced August 2018 

    Genres include:

    •  Musicians/Bands (all genres)
    •  Visual Artists (Paint, Pen,      Photo, Video)
    •  Poets (Spoken Word, Lyricism, Page)


    The Abbey has provided a creative space & early performance opportunities for many well known acts including Mary Lambert, The Gundersens (Le Wrens), Courtney Marie Andrews, Bleach Bear, Ben Fisher, Katie Kuffel, Coho, and more.

    We are a 501(c)3 nonprofit, non-religious organization for people of all ages & incomes since 2005. 

    Big thanks to program support from The Larsen Fund, Tableau Software, Ferguson Family Foundation, Newman Assistance Fund, 4Culture, and Via Tribunali Fremont.

    Program Includes:


      • Monthly industry workshops which include: business training in areas of booking, marketing, PR, and promotions plus advice & training on branding, website development, media use and more!
      • Monthly offsite behind-the-scenes visits to Seattle’s leading arts venues
      • Video, photo and audio recording opportunities
        16 - '17 Next Stage Cohort with Program Manager Matt Gano

        16 – ’17 Next Stage Cohort with Program Manager Matt Gano

      • Performance & exhibit opportunities at major events with stipends and/or % of ticket sales paid to artists.
      • Rehearsal spaces available during select times, including use of grand piano, PA, etc.
      • Cross collaboration with other young artists
      • Creative & performance feedback from fellow artists & Abbey Arts team
      • Early VIP entry to industry workshops
      • Participants will put together a collaborative performance piece and perform at a special showcase event at the end of the term
      • Access to mentors in your related field
      • Grants for licensed professional counseling from therapists (artists pay a small co-pay) via Artist Life Guild a separate 501c3 nonprofit.
      • + Free tickets to attend select Abbey Arts produced concerts
      • To encourage access from artists in the greater Seattle area, a modest travel reimbursement (bus/gas) may be available for qualified participants. Please feel free to ask in your application.

    SESSION 4: Fall/Spring  – (September ’18 – May ’19)

    The primary workshops & team gatherings will be held 1 to 2 times per month (with potential for additional meetings) on weekdays for approximately 6 months. Rehearsal time available weekdays generally. Public performance dates will vary.

    Willingness to commit to program length in its entirety is required.

    Workshops will primarily be held at Fremont Abbey Arts Center (in upper Fremont on the #5 and E line) with some activities potentially at Ballard Homestead and other venues around Seattle.

    Travel stipends may be available for those who qualify (within the Seattle area).

    All participants who successfully complete the program and fulfill program commitments will be awarded a, NEXT STAGE Training Program Certificate of Completion; which may assist with future bookings and performance opportunities.

    [NOTE: We require all performers and program participants to adhere to the Abbey Arts respect policy – see]

    Fremont Abbey Arts Center is an all-ages venue


    An industry panel will review applicants based on financial need, skill level, commitment to career, interest in collaboration, and expressed desire to learn.

    Next Stage is not designed to provide training in art, music, poetry or other craft. Referral to outside classes, voice lessons, instruction, etc. may be available however.

    How to Apply:

    Applications Open Year Round

    Apply now for ’18 -’19 session beginning September 2018. 

    1. Read the INFO above
    2. Fill out the Google FORM below  { Mobile Friendly Version }

    Questions?  Email or call Matt Gano our Program Manager – youth(at) / 206-414-8325 (office hours typically T-Th 12-6pm)





    6-8pm @ Fremont Abbey Arts Center

    Join some of Seattle’s leading industry professionals for discussion and insight
    on developing and progressing your career in the arts.



    Past Events:

    4/20/18 –  Next Stage Youth Artist Showcase! 

    Abbey Arts Presents: 2018 Next Stage Showcase, “The Stories We Tell”: A moving collaboration through Fremont Abbey’s downstairs gallery space. “The Stories We Tell” will explore the role of the individual in the larger narrative of life and ask audience members to “find your place in the story.” Come take part in the process of young artists staging new and current works of art, including live music, poetry, live painting and video projection. Featuring: Suzi Spooner, Jake Haber “Habes”, Allison Morton, Luke Martin, Lynn Le, Natalya Zrazhevskaya, Lindsey Moore, Tyler Dobies, & Tommy Ferguson.

    3/20/18 – On Scene: Pro Tips for Branding & Promotions w/ Meli Darby & Austin Santiago

    Hear from Seattle music industry pro’s, MELI DARBY (Upstream Music Fest+Summit) and AUSTIN SANTIAGO (Do206/Buildstrong), as they discuss promotion and branding for up-and-coming artists. Topics will include tips and insights about establishing your brand, building your team, acquiring management, creating DIY campaigns, plus effective tools and organization for top-level self-promotion and more.

    2/20/18 – A Healthy Hustle – w Sienna Dawn & Brad Huggins

    1/23/18 – Giving Back – with Nikkita Oliver

    12/19/17 – The Artist’s Path to “Success”- Industry Panel featuring Evan Flory-Barnes (Industrial Revalation), Anastacia- Renee Tolbert, RA Scion (Common Market)

    11/14/17 – Legal Advice for Artists with Attorney, Ashley Long

    10/17/17 – Book it: Pro Tips for Performing Artists – Booking & Communication – Industry Panel