WINGS Performing Arts Presents: Mississippi Music


Performing in the 2012 Green Show Saturday, July 21st.

Young performers celebrate the rich heritage of Mississippi Music

WINGS Performing Arts is a nationally recognized program of the Lynn Meadows Discovery Center. WINGS has received the Coming Up Taller Award from the President's Council on the Arts and Humanities at the White House, the Mississippi Governor's Award for Excellence in Arts Education, and the Mississippi Humanities Educator Award.  WINGS seeks to nurture the talent, spirit and leadership of young people through commitment to the arts, community service and leadership.  Over five hundred children and youth from across the coast are involved in productions that reach an excess of  21,000 audience members a year through school and community performances partnering with educational and arts organizations.   WINGS has performed by special invitation at Southeastern Theatre Conference in Altanta Georgia as well as the Kennedy Center in Washington, D. C. and the National WWII Museum in New Orleans. WINGS has been the recipient of numerous awards from the Mississippi Theatre Association for production excellence. 

Director: Tonya Sanders Hays

Ms. Hays has a Master of Fine Arts in theatre from Texas Christian University with an emphasis in children's playwriting and a B.A. in Theatre Education from Oklahoma Baptist University.  To date she has written seven children's musicals which have been produced throughout the country.  Ms. Hays work is published through Dramatic Publishing.    She has been the recipient of the Mississippi Arts Commission Artist Fellowship in theatre and been recognized regionally with the Sarah Spencer Award for her work in Theatre for Young Audience by the Southeastern Theatre Conference. In addition she is the recipient of the Cowboy Maloney award from the Mississippi Theatre Association for her contributions to theater in the state.    Hays is the founder and director of the WINGS Performing Arts Program at the Lynn Meadows Discovery Center.  The WINGS program has received the Mississippi Governor's Award for Arts in Education and been recognized on the national level with the Coming Up Taller Award from the President's Council on Arts and Humanities at the White House. Ms. Hays has also been awarded the Mississippi Humanities Council Educator of the Year Award.  Her goal as an artist educator is to nurture the talent, spirit and leadership of young people.

WINGS Performing Arts on Community: WINGS Performing Arts serves the families Mississippi Gulf Coast Community.  Eight productions a year reach thousand of families performed in various venues through touring and festivals. WINGS mentorship has resulted in WINGS seniors receiving substantial scholarship offers over the past several years.  Last year ten seniors received over 2.2 million dollars in college scholarship offers.   Students are recognized regularly for their outstanding contributions in the arts and community service. Two WINGS members have received the Volunteer Youth of the Year award from the Governor's Initiative for Volunteer Excellence.  

Monthly workhshops for over 100 core group members focus on everything from life skills to performing arts and making a difference in the community. WINGS staff and student members work on extensive outreach programs targeting at risk youth through partnerships with the Alternative School and The Boys and Girls Clubs of the the Gulf Coast. We would like to connect with other youth arts programs.