Briefly introduce yourself and explain your position at P.S. ARTS.
Hi, my name is Joella Still, and I am the interim volunteer coordinator for P.S. ARTS. My role is to manage the volunteer program, which involves outreach, recruitment, and communication with volunteers so that they can help support our teaching artist faculty in our in-school programs, as well as P.S. ARTS staff, students, and families in our community programs and events.
I graduated from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA with a bachelor’s degree in English and creative writing. Originally from New Jersey, I moved to Los Angeles to continue my careers in program management/youth development, the arts, and the intersection of the two. I enjoy playing the piano, dancing, singing, teaching, and working with the youth in our community.
What book is currently on your nightstand?
In the spirit of Black History Month, the book that is currently on my nightstand is Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison. Although I’ve obviously heard of the book and am aware of the literary references, I have never actually read it in its entirety. So I like to make sure that during Black History Month I am either revisiting the literary works of black writers or engaging with material that is new to me.
What is currently the most played song you’ve been listening to?
The most played song I’ve been listening to is Cardi B’s “Money.” I know her producer who helped create this record, so I have a personal connection to it, and it just helps me stay motivated throughout the day, as it is a high energy song. As a pianist, I am always drawn to music that is heavy on the keys, especially urban music that is able to seamlessly integrate classical sentiments.
Where is your favorite place to view or take part in art in Los Angeles?
My favorite place to take part in art right now would probably be the various pop-up museums. I just love how going to museums has become so fetch lately, and people are excited to engage with the art they are consuming. So it’s just been fun to see people learn about the various ways you can interact with art in museums and see the increasing awareness and engagement.
What famous person, either dead or alive, would you choose to take out for coffee?
I would love to sit and talk to Michelle Obama. She is the epitome of class, grace, and service, but also is a huge advocate of just being yourself and not letting other people define you. She’s a strong role model on how to navigate a society where black women face a lot of scrutiny for what we look like, how we dress, what we do, and how we communicate. She is an inspiration for combatting that scrutiny every single day because it is a daily challenge dealing with micro-aggressions, racism, and intersectionality in general. Oh, and she’s a genius.