Kirkland Teen Union Building to Temporarily Host Studio East

Published on November 24, 2020

Kirkland Teen Union Building and the grassy area in front of the building

Media Contact:
Joy Johnston
Interim Communications Program Manager
jjohnston@kirklandwa.gov
(425) 979-6562

 

Partnership keeps Studio East in Kirkland while City determines best use of KTUB for teens

KIRKLAND, Wash. – While the City of Kirkland seeks a more permanent solution for the vacated space, the Kirkland Teen Union Building (KTUB) will temporarily host Studio East Training for the Performing Arts, a 501(c)3 nonprofit that has provided theater arts education and opportunities for children in Kirkland for over twenty years. A formal public process to identify organizations that can best fulfill KTUB’s mission as a recreation, resource and arts center for teens is expected to start in Summer/Fall 2021. The relocation makes it possible for Studio East to continue providing valuable programs for youth during a time when many arts organizations have been devastated by the impacts of the pandemic. 
 
“This is a win for KTUB, and for arts and culture in our community,” said Kirkland Mayor Penny Sweet. “So much of what we love about our life in Kirkland has been altered by COVID-19. This partnership helps preserve opportunities for our youth to build confidence, compassion, and responsibility through theater in a year when we need positive experiences more than ever.”

As part of the agreement with the City of Kirkland, Studio East will partner with the City to ensure diverse, equitable and inclusive access to its programs, in alignment with the City’s commitment to ending institutional and structural racism in Kirkland. Organizations interested in partnering with Studio East should contact Lani Brockman at 425-820-1800. 

“Studio East is founded on the belief that the performing arts can make a difference in the lives of our children,” said Founding Artistic Director Lani Brockman. “We are excited to create access to performing arts for all Kirkland youth – especially those who need it most. Like many arts organizations, Studio East has been in financial crisis due to the pandemic, and this relocation makes it possible for our organization to continue our mission.”

In an October 2020 survey of 47 arts groups in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties, 73% of respondents indicated they currently have employees laid off or furloughed as a result of the pandemic. Prior to 2020, art-related businesses employed more than 34,000 people in King County and contributed over $35 billion to Washington’s economy.

Studio East will move into the vacant KTUB space located at 348 Kirkland Ave in November.  Several of Studio East’s classes operate under the state’s Stay Safe-Stay Healthy guidance for childcare, and all activities will comply with current and future state guidelines for health and safety. The temporary lease with the City ends February 2022. In the coming year, there will be additional information about the process to select a non-profit organization to continue operation of KTUB, as well as further opportunities for public input.

For more information about Studio East Training for the Performing Arts, visit studio-east.org.

For more information about the Kirkland Teen Union Building, please see the KTUB webpage on the City of Kirkland website.