PuSh Youth Cohort 2023

The 2023 PuSh Youth cohort gathered for a group selfie

The PuSh Youth Cohort is a unique opportunity for a small group of curious young people to become immersed in the performing arts. It is a new direction for the PuSh Youth Program visioned in collaboration between the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival and Solid State.

This free program will bring together 12 racialized youth from Surrey aged 16-24 who have an interest in theatre, dance and/or performance but have not yet had significant exposure to professional- level performance. It will provide a platform to experience, examine and engage in the professional contemporary performing arts community through workshops and studio visits with arts professionals, discussions with other participants and guest artists, and a variety of shows, leading up to and during the PuSh Festival in January. Like a book club but for the live performing arts, the Cohort will meet on a weekly basis starting Decembre. Meetings will be held at Solid State in Surrey.

Apply to the PuSh Youth Cohort now! 

If you have any questions, please contact fiorella@solidstate.coop
Deadline to apply: Sunday, December 11, 2022

Apply Now

Youth Cohort Program Team

This year we are doing things a bit differently. The PuSh Youth Cohort will be run by Medley.

Medley is an art and event management group of passionate youth that are – in majority – made up from past members of the PuSh Youth Cohort that took place in 2021-2022. We have been recruited by Solid State to create our own co-op, and we are fully invested in recreating the wonderful experiences that we had in the previous PuSh Youth Cohort. We are now bringing these experiences to a new group of racialized youth who are interested in being part of/learning about the arts through the diverse selection of artists and performance sessions, carefully curated by us and the PuSh Festival.

Read about last year’s experience, and learn more about the 2023 reimagining of the Youth Cohort.

Meet the team

Fiorella Pinillos – Mentor

Fiorella is an arts administrator, urbanist and community engagement specialist. Originally from Peru, Fiorella moved to Vancouver to complete a Masters of Urban Studies at SFU. For over five years, Fiorella has worked to provide access to arts, culture and knowledge to communities that have been traditionally marginalized. Her work with equity seeking communities and her own lived experience as an immigrant, have profoundly shaped her understanding about cultural equity and accessibility. In the last year, Fiorella has started two cooperatives with Solid State, City in Colour and La Libelula, now she is pleased to continue her work in Surrey as a mentor for the PuSh Youth Team [Medley] in partnership with Solid State Community Industries.

Fegor Obuwoma

Fegor is a Nigerian filmmaker, storyteller, and artist with a BFA in film and communications from Simon Fraser University. Her work explores “the personal” in relationship to her larger community and the cultural experience of being Nigerian. She is interested in art institutions as a site for decolonial and experimental practice. Fegor enjoys African futurism and is inquisitive about the ways we access the spirit.

Nandini Bhatia 

Nandini is a first year student at KPU majoring in communications. She is a coordinator for FFCF, a non profit organization, and a music lover. She also loves adventures and exploring new places! Nandini is a previous member of the PuSh Youth Cohort 2020/2021.

Shirin Moradi Gálvez 

Shirin is a member of Medley Events and Arts Management. She is currently attending Kwantlen Polytechnic University and is studying in the English and Creative Writing department. She has always had a deep interest in the arts, particularly in the success of POC artists and creatives. Shirin enjoys reading, writing, and is a music lover, having played the cello for five years. She hopes to be able to learn about and help manage future art-related events. Shirin is a previous member of the PuSh Youth Cohort 2020/2021.

Victor Aspiras

Victor is an aspiring artist who is passionate about performance art, fashion, and photography. He started organizing events at a very young age by helping his mom at his previous academy, this had led him to be fervent and inspired. Victor likes to go on adventures in his free time and explore places he hasn’t been to. He loves listening to music, especially while skating. Victor is a previous member of the PuSh Youth Cohort 2020/2021.

Vivan Prasad

Vivan is a senior high school student at Kwantlen Park Secondary. He is a previous member of the PuSh Youth Cohort 2020/2021.

About Solid State Industries

Solid State starts worker cooperatives with youth (under-35) from racialized migrant backgrounds. We currently have 18 cohorts running with many more in formation.

We have 120+ participants from more than 35 different national backgrounds and 15 staff. Our goal is to build a mutually-supportive network, grounded in Surrey, a cooperative of cooperatives, bound together by a commitment to hospitality and mutual aid.

We believe that the co-op model is highly capacious: it brings people together to work on a common project, build real-world skills, develop lasting bonds, and earn income from a co-op enterprise. Much more than that, we are interested in bringing together youth to work on common projects where they can forge long-term attachments, and develop a sense of belonging and attachment.