Karamu House

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  • Drama Teaching Artist/ Director
  • Drama Teaching Artist/ Assistant Director
  • Vocal Music Teaching Artist/Music Director
  • Dance Teaching Artist/ Choreographer


Reports To: Programming/ Artistic

Department: Arts Education

FLSA Status: Full-time, Exempt



In 1915, Oberlin College graduates Russell and Rowena Jelliffe opened the Playhouse Settlement in a Cleveland area called The Roaring Third. The Jelliffes wanted to build an environment where people of different races, religions, and social and economic backgrounds could come together to seek and share common ventures through the arts, and Karamu House was established as a gathering place for racially diverse members of the surrounding community at that time. As the community became predominantly African American, Karamu responded with programs geared to their needs and interests.

Today, Karamu is evolving to be reborn as a beating heart for the entire community, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identification, or age, as it embarks on its second 100 years, retaining its historical identity as “a place of joyful gathering.” Core programs include a five performance, socially-relevant and professional quality theatre season; arts education in drama/theatre, music and dance for all ages; and community programming, such as a lecture series, and spoken word and music performances, that invites participation and engagement, reflection, and a re-commitment to cultural values.


Karamu is hiring Teaching Artists (TA) for the period of June 12, 2023 – July 28, 2023. Successful candidates are practicing artists in their discipline who are committed to working youth grades 7-12. TAs must have a curiosity in exploring Karamu’s philosophy and approach to arts education. TAs will join a team of highly committed individuals, dedicated to the work of Karamu. Therefore, flexibility, collaboration, fortitude, and a positive attitude are a must. Programming is Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM – 3:30 PM.

Summer Schedule

  • Dates: June 12 – July 28, 2023
  • Days: Monday through Friday
  • Times: 9:00 AM – 3:30 PM
  • Age Range: Grades 7 – 12; max 60 students

Pre-Summer Dates/Agreements

  • Mandatory Auditions for students May 12, 2023: 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM & May 13, 2023: 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
  • Mandatory in-person Professional Development: May 23, May 24, and May 25, 2023, from 4:30 PM -7:00 PM
  • Curriculum Outline and lesson plans for week 1 due May 25, 2023
  • Production Meeting: June 1, 2023, at 1:00 PM (virtual or in-person)
  • Stipend: $450 for pre-summer work

Additional Dates to Know

  • Juneteenth Festival downtown field trip/performance Saturday, June 17, 2023 (time TBD)
  • July 2023 Field trip during program hours (TBD)
  • Performances: Thursday July 27, 2023 @ 6:00 PM | Friday, July 28, 2023 @ 6:00 PM | Saturday July 29, 2023 @ 2:00p*
  • August 1, 2023, post-mortem meeting (time TBD)


Lead Drama Teaching Artist + Director – Serves as lead drama instructor. Creates the overall vision for the production and manages team to uphold the program’s vision in alignment to Karamu Arts Academy’s 4 pillars. Attends daily, arriving 30 minutes before the start and staying until all students have departed. Casts students and provides classroom lessons and management throughout the day/session. Completes associated administrative tasks. Maintains the organization of student’s information, emergency contacts, and production plans (costumes/props/sound needs). Works with the stage manager to ensure proper communication with families. (Weekly $1000 stipend)

Drama Teaching Artist + Asst. Director – Assists the director in upholding the vision for the production. Supports dramaturgy including research on the playwrights and scripts to ensure students have in depth knowledge of the material, beyond simply performing. Oversees and leads small groups to push the work forward. Provides additional team support as needed. (Weekly $850 stipend)

Vocal Music Teaching Artist + Music Director – Instructs students on vocal fundamentals and teaches (4) musical pieces (ensemble and solos) for the Summer Arts production. The music director will be present at auditions on May 12 + May 13, prepared to assess students’ vocal abilities and strengths. Music will be selected from Ain’t Misbehavin, The Color Purple, and The Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin. This role will provide vocal coaching and instruction 3 days per week 10:00 AM-3:00 PM, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. The Music Director will also support the coordination of the band/ musicians for performances. ($500 weekly stipend)

Dance Teaching Artist + Choreographer – Creates choreography for (4) musical numbers while teaching students dance techniques. The dance instructor will be present Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, 10:00 AM-3:00 PM. Fridays will serve as collaboration days for vocal and dance. Production choreography will include (2) full ensemble pieces and (2) small group pieces. The choreographer will have a teachable dance piece for the auditions to assess auditioning students’ abilities. ($500 weekly stipend)

General role responsibilities:

  • Carry out administrative responsibilities including:

-Submission of written lesson plans

-Completing student assessments

-Creating and following teaching schedules.

  • Attend team meetings with Summer Arts staff.
  • Contribute performance pieces or exhibition work for the scheduled event(s).
  • Perform other duties as necessary.


Success in this position requires the following skills and abilities:

  • Team building competencies + ability to be an active contributor in group decision-making.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite.
  • Ability to implement ideas.
  • Proven organizational skills and ability to multi-task.


Candidates are required to possess the following:

  • A degree from an accredited institution of higher education (may be completing final semester of coursework) or equivalent professional experience.
  • Experience in successful classroom management.
  • Previous teaching artist experience.
  • Highly efficient and productive work ethic.
  • Ability to work cooperatively with colleagues, parents, and community.
  • Ability to work successfully under pressure and meet deadlines and goals.
  • Current proof of fingerprinting clearance FBI/BCI.



See role description.

TO APPLY – No Phone Calls Please.

Applicants for the position should send resume, cover letter to:

Karamu House

2355 E. 89th Street

Cleveland, Ohio 44106

careers@karamuhouse.org – include SUMMER ARTS in the subject line.

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