The Medium is the Massage: McLuhan Was Right

MediumIsTheMessageCover1-244x400In the classic text by McLuhan we are introduced to the idea that the medium with which we chose to communicate limits what can be communicated. In the same way that your method of transportation limits where you can travel and how long it take to get there, your method of communication limits what you can say and how long it takes to communicate the idea.

Another reason why our children require performing arts education is that it teaches different kids of communication skills.

Ken Robinson argues that the arts are just as important as math and English because the arts speak to aspects of a child’s being that are “otherwise left untouched.”

This is true.

And, I will add that arts education is important because it teaches aspects of communication that are otherwise neglected.

Not every aspect of being a human being can be expressed in mathematics or an adept command of spoken/written language.

There are portions of our being, of our imagination that can only be expressed or developed within the language of imagination. Through the language of acting, singing, dance, music; through these art forms one learns the language of imagination.

Well, that’s great, Louis, but so what?

Good question!

When we look at the “real world” — that world that we will pretend exists outside of the arts, we see any number of places where the language imagination is critical.

Here are two examples:

The language of science and imagination come together regularly in the field of medicine. In discovering a new cure for a deadly disease, in discovering a new procedure that gives comfort or saves lives; in the creation of new methods of treatments — all great break throughs in medicine represent a discovery that begin within the language of imagination before they were translated and expanded upon within the language of science.

People who invent new technology, write new software, found new companies, all exist within the language of imagination. When one first conceives of something that does not currently exist, this idea is existing fully in imagination. It is through the creation of stories that one brings their idea into the world of reality. Whether one is translating the language of imagination into computer code, a mechanical devices or a business plan, one begins in imagination.

What about a stock broker?
What about a physicist?
What about a lawyer?
What about a teacher?
What about a realtor?
What about a military service person?

How many more examples can you think of where the language of imagination is important? Share them with us on Twitter or on our Facebook page.

Louis Stone-Collonge
Founder and President
The Audacity Performing Arts Project, Inc.

Programs You Can Support

Sometimes, when supporting a non-profit, you want to know how you can help.  We all want to support good works, but some times we want more specifics!
Go Fund Me The Audacity Performing Arts Project
Here are some of the projects you can support by participating in this GoFundMe Fundraiser.



Lowell Elementary (year one)

Lowell is a lovely school in a poor neighborhood in Downtown San Jose.  Audacity is working with their after school programs provider to produce two musicals this year (one on the fall and one in the spring).  In the fall we are planning on producing Disney’s Jungle Book, Kids Edition and, in the spring we are planning on producing Lion King, Kids Edition.
These productions at Lowell are being provided at no cost to the families or the school.  While we are carefully working to amortized production costs of these shows across multiple schools, the cost of producing these shows is project to run $3000 per show.



Washington Elementary (year two)

Washington is located in an area of Downtown San Jose plagued by poverty, crime, drugs and gang violence.  This year Audacity is expanding its after school program commitment. We are also preparing to work with Washington’s first every PTA to provide additional performance opportunities. The programs at Washington are also provided at no cost to families or the school and are estimated at $3500, but may adjust as programs expand and grow.


Reflections Inspired by “We’re All Art Teachers



Broadway High School: Broadway Voices (year two)

Broadway High School is the continuation high school for San Jose Unified located in South San Jose.  The kids here have all had issues with their primary high schools and, in acts of inspired bravery (some inspired by the court system), they are continuing to peruse their high school diplomas at Broadway.  Our project here is the creation of a feature length video documenting their inspirational personal stories.


Read more:



Sinnott Elementary (year three)

Sinnott is located in Milpitas. We produce two plays at Sinnott in the coming years.  We will produce a drama in the fall and a musical in the spring.  While this elementary school does not have the issues our Downtown San Jose partner schools do, about half of our kids here are on financial aid.  The cost to Audacity at Sinnott is about $2000.


Read more:


We invite donors to email us and let us know if they would like their support to be directed at specific programs.
Please let us know if you have any questions!!
Louis Stone-Collonge
President and Founder
The Audacity Performing Arts Project, Inc.