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Award Collaboration with Harvard professor Clayton M. Christensen Recognizes Leading Innovators and Creators Impacting Social Transformation

Alec Ross’ “The Industries of the Future” to receive 2016 Book of the Year.

New York, NY [April, 4, 2016] – The Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by AT&T, today announced the honorees for its seventh annual Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards, held in collaboration with Harvard professor Clay Christensen and the Disruptor Foundation. Co-sponsored by Accenture, AT&T and media sponsor The Guardian, the awards will be moderated by Perri Peltz at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center BMCC on Friday April 22 at 11:00am. Festival co-founder, Craig Hatkoff, is the Chief Curator of the awards. The 15th edition of the Tribeca Film Festival runs from April 13 to 24.

The goal of the awards is to share insights into innovation to help solve the some of the world’s most intractable problems. Inspired by Christensen’s ground-breaking theory of disruptive innovation, the Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards celebrate innovators who have broken the mold to significantly impact industries and business models in traditional and non-traditional domains, including media, healthcare, social justice, education, politics, sports and philanthropy.

Over the past seven years honorees have included Jack Dorsey (Twitter/Square); Jimmy Wales (Wikipedia); Shane Smith (Vice); Jared Cohen, Eric Schmidt (Google); Twyla Tharp, Kickstarter, Warby Parker, David Lynch, Rick Rubin, Kanye West, Uber, DARPA (Big Dog, Cheetah and Hummingbird robots), Airbnb; Justin Bieber and Scooter Braun; Dr. Francis Collins (National Institutes of Health), MITx , City of Manchester, Keith Richards and Stanford Office of Technology and Licensing.

The 2016 Lifetime Achievement Awards will be given to Thomas Heatherwick for his dedication to bringing design, architecture and urban planning together in a single workspace at his own Heatherwick Studio, and Kenya Wildlife Service Chair Dr. Richard Leakey, one of the world’s leading paleoanthropologists and conservationists, for his leadership and past and current efforts in shutting down the ivory trade in Africa.The 2016 honorees include:


The 2016 honorees include:

Actor, director, producer, writer, and humanitarian Nate Parker will receive the Theodore Parker Prize (presented by Darren Walker of the Ford Foundation)Scott Harrison, Founder and CEO of Charity Water; Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, the nation’s premier defender of liberty and individual freedom; Louie Psihoyos, Academy Award-winning filmmaker (“the Cove” and “Racing Extinction”); Professor Jennifer Jacquet, Ph.D., author of “IS SHAME NECESSARY?” (Pantheon, 2015) and an environmental social scientist who studies large-scale cooperation dilemmas, such as overfishing, climate change, and the wildlife tradeFabio Zaffagnini, the creator of Rockin’1000, whose crowdsourced 1000-musician performance of the Foo Fighters’ Learn To Fly has reached 30 million views on YouTube; Brent Stapelkamp, a researcher who tracked and photographed Cecil the Lion for nine years; Alan Eustace, world-record holder for Highest Freefall Jump (135,889 feet) earned in the process of piloting the system built by the StratEx team; Max Kenner, founder and executive director of Bard Prison Initiative (BPI) which enrolls incarcerated individuals in academic programs culminating in Bard College degrees; Emily Callahan and Amber Jackson, co-founders of Blue Latitudes, whose mission is to globally scale the conversion of oil rigs into coral reefs; Renaud Laplanche, founder and CEO of Lending Club, the world’s largest online marketplace connecting borrowers and investors; The Suskind Family (Ron, Cornelia, Walter and Owen Suskind) for unleashing ability and creativity in those with autism; Jenna Arnold and Greg Segalco-founders of ORGANIZE, which is looking to put itself out of business by solving the organ donation crisis; juvenile justice reformer Adam Foss, who by shifting his focus from incarceration to transforming lives is reinventing the role of the criminal prosecutor; and Hilde Kate and Isabel Rose Lysiakwho run the monthly community newspaper Orange Street News, based out of Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania.

The 2016 Book of the Year is New York Times bestseller “The Industries of the Future” (Simon & Schuster, 2016) by leading innovation expert Alec Ross who explains what’s next for the world: the advances and stumbling blocks that will emerge in the next ten years, and how we can navigate them.

“This year’s honorees are a diverse group whose achievements lead by example uniting communities that are offering new solutions to some of society’s most challenging issues,” said Craig Hatkoff, TFF co-founder and chief curator for TDIA. “We are thrilled to celebrate Professor Christensen’s original theory and the new frontiers of innovation theory and application. Disruptors represent a new kind of billionaire – innovators who have the potential to help a billion people”

“Technology alone cannot solve the world’s most intractable problems. We must learn to crawl up inside and shine a light on what makes people tick,” said Christensen, “Each year’s crop of honorees help me refine and advance my thinking about disruptive innovation theory”

Honorees receive the iconic red hammer as the official Disruptor Award, symbolic for both building new business models and smashing broken ones.

The 2016 Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Award honorees are as follows:

Thomas HeatherwickLifetime Achievement Award Honoree

Founder and Design Director, Heatherwick Studio

Thomas Heatherwick is a British designer whose prolific and varied work is characterized by its ingenuity, inventiveness and originality. He founded Heatherwick Studio in 1994 to bring design, architecture and urban planning together in a single workspace. Known for projects like the UK Pavilion at the Shanghai 2010 Expo, the cauldron for the 2012 London Olympics, and the Learning Hub at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, Heatherwick Studio is currently working in four continents on projects valued at over £2 billion. Thomas is a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, a Royal Academician and in 2004 became the youngest Royal Designer for Industry.

Richard LeakeyLifetime Achievement Award Honoree 

Chair, Kenya Wildlife Service and Founder & Chair, Turkana Basin Institute

Dr. Richard Leakey is currently a Professor of Anthropology at Stony Brook University, New York where he also serves as the Founder and Chair of the Turkana Basin Institute, a Kenya-based research facility that studies the history of life, past climate change and origins of humans. He is also Chairman of the Board of the Kenya Wildlife Service. Formerly Director of Kenya’s National Museums, Director of the Wildlife Conservation and Management Department, founding Director and Chairman of the Kenya Wildlife Service, Member of Parliament in Kenya and Head of the Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet, Richard is now focused on funding the research institute at Turkana and working as Chair of the Kenya chapter of Transparency International and Founder of Wildlife Direct. Richard has played a key role in efforts to combat elephant and rhino poaching since the early 1990s, has actively campaigned for the protection of the Great Apes and he has become increasingly vocal about the threats to biodiversity arising from global climate change and the human population growth.

Nate Parker

Activist, Filmmaker

Actor, director, producer, writer, and humanitarian Nate Parker recently won both the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award for The Birth of a Nation, a 7-year labor of love for Parker which he wrote, directed, produced and starred in, to rousing acclaim and fanfare at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. Following its debut, the film received an enthusiastic standing ovation and was quickly acquired by Fox Searchlight Pictures, who will release the film October 7, 2016. 

Scott Harrison

Founder and CEO, Charity Water

Scott Harrison is the founder and CEO of Charity Water, a nonprofit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries. In nine years, with the help of more than 500,000 donors worldwide, Charity Water has raised over $207 million and funded over 19,000 water projects in 24 countries. When completed, those projects will provide over 6.18 million people with clean, safe drinking water.

Anthony D. Romero

Executive Director, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

Anthony D. Romero is the Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union, the nation’s premier defender of liberty and individual freedom. He took the helm of the organization just seven days before the September 11, 2001 attacks. Shortly afterward, the ACLU launched its national Keep America Safe and Free campaign to protect basic freedoms during a time of crisis. They achieved court victories on the Patriot Act, uncovering thousands of pages of documents detailing the torture and abuse of detainees in U.S. custody, and filing the first successful legal challenge to the Bush administration’s illegal NSA spying program.

Louie Psihoyos

Executive Director, Oceanic Preservation Society and Director, “Racing Extinction” & “The Cove” 

Louie Psihoyos is an Academy Award-winning filmmaker and Executive Director of the Oceanic Preservation Society (OPS). He is recognized as one of the top still photographers in the world, having created iconic images for National Geographic for 18 years, and hundreds of covers for other magazines. His ability to bring humanity and wit to complicated science stories carries over to his filmmaking. Psihoyos’s first film, “The Cove”, won the Oscar for Best Documentary Film of 2009 and over 75 other awards around the world. His second film, “Racing Extinction”, aired in 220 countries and territories and sparked the #StartWith1Thing movement.

Jennifer Jacquet

Assistant Professor, Department of Environmental Studies at NYU

Jennifer Jacquet is an assistant professor in the Department of Environmental Studies at NYU. She is an environmental social scientist who studies large-scale cooperation dilemmas, such as overfishing, climate change, and the wildlife trade. She is the author of “Is Shame Necessary?” (Pantheon, 2015) about the evolution, function and future of the use of social disapproval in solving the tragedy of the commons.

Brent Stapelkamp

Conservationist and Photographer

Lion-obsessed Brent Stapelkamp has studied nature’s majestic apex predator in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe for Oxford University’s Wildlife and Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU). Brent’s work is primarily about promoting ways to mitigate the conflict between lions and livestock owners with a healthy dose of wildlife photography to get his “lion fix.” He lives off-grid with his wife, Laurie Simpson and their seven year-old-son Oliver. For nine years Stapelkamp tracked and photographed Cecil the Lion who rose to fame after being hunted down under questionable circumstances. Cecil has become the global icon for conservation andBrent’s extensive collection of photos of Cecil and other wildlife in Africa is a true treasure trove.

Fabio Zaffagnini

Creator, Rockin’1000

Fabio Zaffagnini is the creator of Rockin’1000, a crowd-funded project that culminated in a performance where 1000-musicians gathered on a field in Italy to play one song: Learn to Fly by the Foo Fighters. The YouTube video chronicling this event went viral and has to date attracted 30 million views. The event served as an invitation for the Foo Fighters to come perform in Cesena, Italy which they accepted. Furthermore, Fabio is a co-founder of Trail Me Up, a startup that creates augmented virtual reality experiences of hike trails. In 2015 he entered the European Commission’s Expert list for his product design skills. Previously, he dealt with Technology Transfer and Industrial Research for private and public research centers. Earlier in his career, Fabio was a marine geologist at the Institute of Marine Sciences of the Italian National Research Center and the Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change. Fabio is an expert in social innovation, crowdfunding, crowdsourcing and product design and loves travelling, rock music and beach volleyball. 

Alan Eustace

Engineer/Stratospheric Explorer

World–record free faller Alan Eustace retired as Senior Vice President of Knowledge in April 2015 after 13 years with Google. His lifelong interest in flying, skydiving, and engineering lead him to work with the world-class StratEx team to design, build, and fly, scuba-like system for the exploration of the Stratosphere. In the final test of this system, Alan and the StratEX team set three new skydiving world records, including the highest exit altitude (135,899 feet, 41,422 meters). Alan served as executive producer of the film “14 Minutes from Earth.

Emily Callahan and Amber Jackson

Co-Founders, Blue Latitudes

Emily Callahan and Amber Jackson founded Blue Latitudes to unite science, policy and economics to create innovative solutions for the complex ecological challenges associated with offshore structures. Ms. Callahan is a marine conservation biologist, oil and gas consultant and explorer. She has a B.A. in Environmental Science and an M.A.S degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She has worked in the field of environmental consulting for over four years and conducted both international and domestic environmental impact assessments for governmental agencies and private sector clients, her key industry of expertise is in offshore oil and gas development and decommissioning. She worked as a field technician on the BP 252 Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This is where she witnessed firsthand the destruction and devastation wrought by an oil spill. However, it is also where she learned of a unique silver lining to the reality of offshore oil and gas development, the Rigs to Reefs program – a program that worked to preserve the ecosystems thriving beneath the surface.

Ms. Jackson is an oceanographer, environmental scientist and entrepreneur. She has a B.A. in Marine Science from UC Berkeley and a M.A.S in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Her expertise is unique, using technology to facilitate the intersection of science and communication. A former Ocean Curator at Google in partnership with the Sylvia Earle Alliance, she engineered and launched intelligent map layers in Google Maps that distill and relate complex concepts in ocean science for a variety of audiences. Ms. Jackson also has an established foundation as a scientist. A former National Science Foundation Researcher at the California Academy of Sciences, she developed a curiosity for using artificial habitats to mitigate anthropogenic losses and degradation of natural habitats. In California, the Rigs to Reefs program is an active example of this.

Lending Club

Accepting on behalf is Founder & CEO, Renaud Laplanche

Lending Club is the world’s largest online credit marketplace, facilitating personal loans, business loans, and financing for elective medical procedures. The company’s mission is to transform the banking system to make credit more affordable and investing more rewarding. Lending Club operates at a lower cost than traditional bank lending programs and passes the savings on to borrowers in the form of lower rates and to investors in the form of solid returns.

As Founder and CEO, Renaud is responsible for overseeing the overall strategic direction and operation of Lending Club, which he grew from a disruptive idea in 2006 to the world’s largest online credit marketplace today. He also serves as Chairman of Lending Club’s Board of Directors. Before founding Lending Club, Renaud was the Founder & CEO of TripleHop Technologies, an enterprise software company acquired by Oracle Corporation in June 2005. Prior to that, Renaud was a Senior Associate at New York law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton. Renaud was recognized on Bloomberg Markets’ 2015 Most Influential List, an annual list that acknowledges 50 of the top leaders across technology, finance and politics around the globe. In 2014 he won the Economist Innovation Award in the consumer products category. He was ranked one of the top SMB CEOs by the Glassdoor Employees’ Choice Awards in 2015 and was named the “best start-up CEO to work for” by Business Insider in 2014. Renaud holds two world speed sailing records, including the Transpacific record. Renaud has an MBA from HEC and London Business School and a JD from Montpellier University. He is a frequent guest lecturer at Columbia Business School and a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization.

Max Kenner

Founder and Executive Director, Bard Prison Initiative 

Max Kenner is the Founder and Executive Director of Bard Prison Initiative (BPI), which enrolls incarcerated individuals in academic programs culminating in Bard College degrees. He co-founded the Consortium for the Liberal Arts in Prison, supporting similar programs in 10 states. Kenner is Vice President for Institutional Initiatives and Advisor to the President on Public Policy & College Affairs at Bard College. He was a 2013-14 fellow-in-residence in American History at Harvard University and serves on Governor Cuomo’s NY State Council on Community Re-Entry and Reintegration, Re-Entry Subcommittee. Recent awards include The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s 40 Under 40, Richard Cornuelle Award for Social Entrepreneurship, and Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award in Education.

The Suskind Family

Ron, Cornelia, Walter and Owen Suskind 

Owen Suskind, a boy silenced by autism, methodically memorized dozens of Disney movies. When his family realized this, they began to speak to him in Disney dialogue and turned their world into a stage, playing animated characters. Over years, Owen regained speech, learned to read by reading credits and eventually invented an original language — using scripts and lyrics — to express love, loss, kinship, and brotherhood. In turning his passion into a pathway, the Suskind family developed an approach, called “affinity therapy,” that is driving research and showing broad success in addressing the core social communication deficits of autism. Owen’s father, the author Ron Suskind, is now leading an effort to develop technology that allows multiple neurodiverse populations to harness their strong interests to drive social, emotion, and practical learning. Owen’s story can soon be seen in the new documentary Life, Animated from Academy Award® winning director Roger Ross Williams, an official selection of the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival.

Jenna Arnold and Greg Segal

Co-Founders, ORGANIZE

ORGANIZE is a nonprofit organization based in New York that leverages health data to end the organ donor shortage by applying smarter technologies, building more creative partnerships, and advocating for data-driven policies. Founded by Greg Segal and Jenna Arnold after Greg’s father waited five years for a heart transplant, ORGANIZE’s goal is to flip supply-and-demand for organ transplants in the US by building the country’s first central organ donor registry and creating more culturally relevant ways for people to share their donor wishes. Fast Company called ORGANIZE “the [one] to end the organ shortage.”

Adam Foss

Juvenile Justice Reformer

As Assistant District Attorney in the Juvenile Division of Suffolk County, Adam Foss has become one of Boston’s leading voices for compassion in criminal justice. Recognizing that prosecutors have a unique opportunity to intervene in offender’s lives, Foss co-founded the Roxbury CHOICE Program, a collaborative effort between defendants, the court, the probation department, and the D.A. to recast probation as a transformative experience rather than a punitive process. In addition to his work with the DA’s office, Foss is the founder of the SCDAO Reading Program, a project designed to bridge the achievement gap of area elementary school students.

Hilde Kate and Isabel Rose Lysiak

Orange Street News

Hilde Kate and Isabel Rose Lysiak run the monthly community newspaper Orange Street News, based out of Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania. The OSN recently received widespread acclaim for its reporting on community news and its response to critics who questioned its publishers ability to cover serious news because of their young age and gender. The Publisher of the OSN, Hilde Kate Lysiak, 9, is in charge of all content, reporting, writing, and taking all pictures while her older sister Isabel, 12, runs its multimedia operations where she produces, edits, and directs all video content for



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Theater review: ‘Heidi’s Monkeys’

Original thriller from Danville native ratchets up the scares

October 13, 2016
By JACK FELIX - Sun-Gazette Correspondent Williamsport Sun-Gazette

After first descending upon Williamsport last fall, they're back - following the world premiere in November 2015, "Heidi's Monkeys" returns to the stage for 7 p.m. performances Friday and Saturday at the Pajama Factory, 1307 Park Ave.

The thriller was written by Matthew Lysiak, a Danville native and former New York Daily News journalist, who moved back to the area in 2013. He hopes that "Heidi's Monkeys" will be an annual fall-time tradition.

His original play tells a twisted tale of Heidi Mayerson, a young girl suffering from a rare psychological disease and who believes that the toy monkeys her deceased father gave her are trying to send her a message from beyond the grave.

Article Photos

Shown is a scene from the thriller “Heidi’s Monkeys,” which has performances this weekend at the Pajama Factory, 1307 Park Ave.

Speaking to the playwright during intermission, Lysiak notes that although "Heidi's Monkeys" might have been staged in a larger auditorium, the Pajama Factory setting is the more intimate venue that he envisioned.

Lysiak also confirmed that the play is partially dawn from his paranormal experiences as an eight-year-old boy who believed he saw various stuffed monkeys leap off his toy shelf and try to climb onto his bed. Having found three of these monkeys only a few years ago - thought to be tossed away by his parents - the trio of monkeys are used in the live performance.

Like Heidi's on-stage mother, Lysiak recounts the similar reactions from his parents (overactive imagination and counseling).

Two of his daughters are featured in the two-act play, including Isabel, playing the troubled and confused Heidi. Hilde Lysiak plays Heidi's younger sister, Sarah Mayerson.

The cast is very well rehearsed with some area veterans in principal roles. Amy Straub has considerable dialogue with Heidi, other members of her family and the counselor. Straub is believable as the frustrated mother but some modulation, instead of frequent border-line screaming at her daughter and the treating physician, would be beneficial.

Isabel Lysiak is an accomplished and remarkably polished young actress in this demanding role as Heidi. Bethany Umholtz displays fine facial reactions as the counselor responding to Heidi and her mother. Isaac Conner does double duty, including playing Dr. McDaniel, with Jessica Hasseman as the nurse.

Many of the pluses in this production are traceable to the director's versatility. Desirae Ashilene Mausteller excels not only in her directing, but also in creating a track of spooky music, heartbeats and special audio sounds. Having these snippets played during the frequent scene changes (which are made fairly quickly and quietly) add to the overall atmosphere.

This production again demonstrates that Mausteller is as adept in the director's chair as in acting. After a recent major acting stint in the Community Theatre League's "The Crucible," she will move from this production to directing the upcoming production of "A Nice Family Gathering" at the CTL.

However, a few of the scenes, which switch from Heidi's bedroom to the counselor's office, and later to the hospital, are so short in duration, that they add little to the show's growing impact.

As for the monkeys, ranging from small to gorilla-sized, the half dozen toys, when first seen, are more likely to produce a nervous laugh instead of a gasp. Perhaps if they were all smaller or sinisterly scampered around Heidi and her bed, the effect would be scarier.

Given the tension-filled scenes and use of an occasional expletive, the show is recommended for those 15 years and above. For early arrivals, a free tarot card reading is offered.

As Lysiak's 2016 version of "Heidi's Monkeys" aptly warns, "In a nightmare, no one can hear you scream."

Adorable agony aunt gives touching advice on how to know if you’re gay (VIDEO)

Izzy shares advice on coming to terms with your sexuality (YouTube)
Izzy shares advice on coming to terms with your sexuality (YouTube)


YouTube star Izzy shares her words of wisdom with other children.

Izzy- star of YouTube channel Ask Izzy’, an awesome advice column for kids"-has given some heart warming advice on realising your sexuality.


During this week's episode one viewer, Mia - who is just eleven years old - ask's Izzy: "How do I know if I'm gay?"

Izzy's reply - beautiful in its simplicity - follows: "Hmmm, how do you know if you are gay....?

"Um, because you like girls!"

"Don't overthink it - go with what makes you happy!"

The young star has since won praise from young and older followers alike, with one parent tweeting Izzy to tell her she is "an inspiration."

Izzy also gives advice on subjects such as asking your parents permission before you "head downtown" and if Santa Claus is really or not.

Watch her latest installment below.

Theater review: ‘Miracle on 34th Street’

Courtyard Theatre cast gets the audience in the Christmas spirit


Courtyard Theatre will present “Miracle on 34th Street,” with performances 7:30 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday and a 2 p.m. Sunday finale at the Courtyard Theater, in Selinsgrove’s Susquehanna Valley Mall.

PHOTO PROVIDED Courtyard Theatre will present “Miracle on 34th Street,” with performances 7:30 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday and a 2 p.m. Sunday finale at the Courtyard Theater, in Selinsgrove’s Susquehanna Valley Mall.

SELINSGROVE — When a bearded old gent, hired by Macy’s to play Santa Claus, recommends that a disappointed shopper check out its main competitor Gimbels, it’s almost  seems like a miracle.

“Miracle On 34th Street,” Custom Taylored Productions’s holiday attraction has remaining 7 p.m. performances Friday and Saturday, with a 2 p.m. finale on Sunday at the Courtyard Theater, in Selinsgrove’s Susquehanna Valley Mall.

Adapted from Valentine Davis’ novel, “Miracle  …” it basically follows the 1947 familiar film classic which is set in New York City.

Kris Kringle, drafted to replace a drunken Santa Claus, quickly finds favor with shoppers and their youngsters with his common sense and charming spirit. Initially, he is less successful in convincing Doris Walker, who hired him and her daughter, Susan, that he is really Santa Claus.

After briefly committed as insane, Kringle is put on trial to prove or disapprove his true identity. But with help from the U.S. Postal Service during the climatic courtroom scene, all the unbelievers are turned into believers.

Bob Taylor directs this ambitious production which features a two level set and multiple scenes. The pacing, understandably but noticeably slows down, especially in Act II, as the  large, well designed set pieces are slid into place.

With a large cast, including several kids waiting to make their Christmas wishes known to Santa, the acting considerably varies.

Heading the cast is Chris Reis as Kris Kringle. Although his beard is not exactly snow white, Reis is believable as he conveys goodwill and the holiday spirit.  Isabel Lysiak (recently seen in “Heidi’s Monkeys”) is excellent as the cynical Susan Walker, who doesn’t believe in Santa Claus.

Natalie Wagner plays her mother, Doris, with Adam Waltz as her neighbor and would-be love interest, Fred. Featured are Doug Eaton as Mr. Macy; Eric Kerchoff as his fidgeting assistant; and Jesse James as Mr. Gimbel.

With some doubling and tripling of roles, the cast is well attired in period costumes.

The show runs approximately 90 minutes with one intermission. The audience at one of the first weekend’s performances thoroughly applauded this holiday attraction. The show can certainly enhance the holiday mood with its message why Christmas must trump commercialism. Although maybe not always completely captivating, this production of “Miracle On 34th Street” is fine, family fare.

For more information, call the Box Office at 570-374-0060; or visit www.thecourtyardthe

Ask Izzy Anything

Here at Kidzworld we are always on the hunt to bring you inspiring stories for kids & teens about kids & teens that are in their own way making a difference in the world. 

By Deanna Beaudoin

We call them simply, Super Kids. 


Izzy on locationIzzy on locationCourtesy of The Daily Item

Kidzworld is pleased to formally introduce, Izzy.

Isabel, AKA Izzy, is ten years old and a fourth grader where she is a straight A student. She excels in spelling, reading, math, and her favorite subject is writing

Izzy is a published writer whose work has appeared in the New York Daily News, the fifth largest paper in the country! Last year Izzy moved from her home in Brooklyn, New York, to Pennsylvania. She is also has experience as a playwright, having written shows that were performed live in Brooklyn. Her passions include writing poetry, playing guitar, singing, all things Taylor Swift, and helping her friends solve the problems of the world. 

We had a few minutes today to chat about life in Pennsylvania, being homeschooled and what it's like to be a 11 year old Advice columnist.

Izzy, on behalf of Kidzworld we wanted to acknowledge that you have aimed to make this world a little bit better than you found it & with your YouTube Channel & now your forums here on Kidzworld we think you are doing just that. 

Kidzworld's Interview with eleven year old, Izzy

Kidzworld: What's your favorite part about being Homeschooled Izzy? 

  • I really like it because when I have my advice column its its alt easier because,  if I went to school we'd have to schedule things on the weekend or afterschool and it would be a lot harder and a lot more work. 

Kidzworld: What made you decide to start a YouTube Channel? 

  • It was all kind of, so I had my advice column with the "daily item" a news paper out of -  and the video's would go up on there website so then we decided to start posting them as well on YouTube. 

Kidzworld: Where do you come up with your advice? 

  • I try to come out of it with my own experiences because it's about kids and it's a lot harder for adults to answer these questions because they pull from their experiences when they were kids and kids now are so much different. I also imagine when I am answering these questions that I am talking to best friend. When I look into the camera I am talking to my best friend. 

Kidzworld: How long does it take to prepare for each segment that you put on YouTube? 

  • It doesn't take that long, this is basically what I the process is. I just like to wear hats and I get my phone out and a little tri-pod and a wireless microphone and I put that out and then I sit in my room and record them. Then when I am done I edit them and then we have to upload them. They used to send someone from the Daily Item video record them for me but I wanted to learn the process so recently I have been recording them myself. 

At Kidzworld there are over 2 million other kids, around your age approximately. One of your tag lines that you always say in your video's "It's for a kid, by a kid". We're curious are you going to be DISH-ING some of your advice on our website? Have you started a blog, or are you contributing to any forums? We would like to chat with you in real time about the video's, the questions and your advice. 

  • We definitely have been putting up links to my video's. Meanwhile when I am messaging the other kids, if they have any problems I will answer them through the messages. I will answer them that way or I will answer them on my column I can do it that way or they can send it to me on my email. 

Kidzworld: Do you ever go in to the Dish-It forums? There are so many questions and it's very similar to the questions you get mailed to you each week :) Kids are in there, for kids and peer support. We have Dish-It that formally answer questions but also our Mod's and other caring individuals. 

  • I like that, I think I'll be doing that too. 

Kidzworld: We'd love to have you, that would be fabulous! 

  • Thank you :) 

Kidzworld: Izzy, tell me about your passion. You are obviously a positive individual - How do you do you stay inspired, what inspires you? 

  • When I live in New York, my Dad was a reporter for a paper and I would always see these columns in the paper for adults. I would rarely if ever see and for kids and when I did they were all written by adults and tbh no matter how cool adults think they are they just cant relate to a kid as well as another kid could. So when I moved to Pennsylvania I started my advice column I got in touch with an editor from the daily item and gave him my idea and everyone loved it. A couple of weeks later started filming them. I love to help. 

Kidzworld: What is it that moves you Izzy, what makes you want to get out of bed each day and take on the world? 

  • I have always loved giving advice and I just always want to help people. That's what inspires me. 

Kidzworld: You give advice to lots of kids every week, if you could go back to your younger self - what advice would you give ? 

  • I would say to Always Be Yourself, try not to care what anyone else thinks of you and in the worst situations try and be the best version of  yourself you can be. 

Kidzworld: What would you say, you love the VERY MOST about yourself?

  • Ummm.. this is hard. I just love helping people and I love how weird I am. Giggles. 

Kidzworld: Where do you get your questions from? Can people e-mail you, send you letters or how does one go about "Asking Izzy Anything?"

  • During the summer months I like to grab my hat and head to the park. I pick people at random and tell them about my project and then ask if they have any questions. When it get's colder the questions usually come from either Facebook, e-mail or Twitter

Kidzworld: Do you feel that there is one common question that seems to be asked over and over by different kids? 

  • Yes, actually there does seem to be a question that comes up many times. Kids often comment to be that kids today don't have as much freedom as they did years ago. Kids often think that their parents don't trust them as much as they would like to be trusted & how can they deal with that. 

Kidzworld: Have you ever experienced On-Line bullying, or do you have an advise for some one that is dealing with this issue currently?

  • I would say: Just ignore it, these people are not your friends. Try not to listen to what they say, hopefully you can find the things you really like to do and do them. Try not to care about those people, try and be yourself and stay positive. 

Kidzworld: What is the greatest challenge for you doing this column? 

  • Sometimes I worry about giving the wrong advice or give advice that the person I am trying to help wont like. I just try to give the best advice possible so I hope that doesn't happen. 

Kidzworld: What is the biggest reward to doing this column. 

  • I just really like knowing I am helping people. 

Last thoughts from Izzy: "Always be yourself, and don't care about what any one else thinks of you. Always be yourself."

Thank you so much Izzy for chatting with us today at Kidzworld, we look forward to hearing more from you and your column in the future as well as seeing you interacting & having fun on our site. 

Ask Izzy from on Drew & the Crew

posted: December 2, 2014 

Drew & Ali hosted “Ask Izzy” from this morning and she was awesome! If you missed it, listen to the interview here.