OUR MISSION

Our goal is to motivate, inspire, and educate the youth in performing arts.

 

Our training is level-based from beginner, intermediate, to advanced as students

develop through several genres of dance.

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OUR HISTORY

Young Actors Guild Dance and Theatre Company was founded 30 years ago by Memphian Chrysti Chandler. Her vision to impact youth through the ARTS has helped over 30,000 youth in the Bluff City. Many youth have performed on Broadway, American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, and the Apollo Theatre. The company has a 98% graduation rate from college and continues to provide a positive outlet for youth in the city of Memphis. 

 

Young Actors Guild is a Dance and Theatre Company dedicated to serving youth in the inner city of Memphis, TN and Northern Mississippi.

Young Actors Guild Dance and Theatre Company has performed for Oprah Winfrey, former President Bill Clinton, Maxine Waters, and many other dignitaries.

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OUR VISION

The instructors, volunteers, and staff at Young Actors Guild Theatre and Dance Academy ARE UNITED IN THEIR BELIEF THAT ALL CHILDREN:

  • Have the power to learn

  • Are curious & creative

  • Can succeed

No two students have exactly the same skills or learning style. That’s why we create level-based learning classes for your child. Your plan will combine direct instruction and small group classes to develop in Performing Arts.

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OUR FOUNDER

In 1991, longtime Memphian and Hamiltonian Chrysti Chandler founded Young Actors Guild. Over the past 30 years, she has trained and developed over 30,000 youth in the performing arts. YAG’s mission is to impact, engage, and inspire youth ages 3 - 17 in the ARTS by “Bringing the Arts back to the Community.” 

Because of her passion for the children of Memphis, Chandler has been recognized for her diligent service throughout the Memphis community including Woman's Foundation, Tri State Defender, and the Commercial Appeal Top10 people Who make a difference in Memphis. 

Her organization Young Actors Guild has had the distinct pleasure of performing for Oprah Winfrey, the former President Bill Clinton, Maxine Water, and many others. YAG shares a rich history of alumni like world renowned musician Charles Streeter who’s played with Chaka Khan, J. Lo, and Prince, She’ Street who’s danced with Missey Elliot, Dimonique Jackson who’s sang with Yolanda Adams, Gedeon McKinney from American Idol, Alexis Grace from American Idol,“Lil Buck” from So You Think You Can Dance, Evvie McKinney winner of The Four, and many alumni have performed with Dance Theatre of Harlem, Alvin Ailey, and Debbie Allen Dance Academy. However, she is most proud that her organization celebrates a 98% graduation rate from college.

As YAG expands her vision of “Bringing the Arts back to the Community “ the City of Memphis opened doors with the donation of an old 4,000 sq ft firehouse in the heart of the Orange Mound / Bethel Grove community in 2019. A community sharing a rich history of heritage, and legacy being the oldest African American community in the United States.

Continuing the legacy she has opened the Harriet Performing Arts Center in the Orange Mound community. HPAC is a creative multi- purposed space to provide youth freedom through the Arts to hone their natural talents in various areas of the Arts. “She is motivated to continue by the culture of Memphis its’ extraordinary talent and the heartfelt testimonies of the children of Memphis who come from different walks of life, different neighborhoods, but share the same passion.........the love for the arts.'

 
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