Youth Theatre Journal

Youth Theatre Journal is a refereed journal that draws contributions from a wide and varied community of researchers, educators, artists, philosophers, administrators and theorists. It is the official scholarly publication of AATE. Youth Theatre Journal is published twice a year by Routledge/Taylor and Francis Group. All domestic AATE members receive a complimentary subscription to the Youth Theatre Journal, including mailed copies of the journal and online access to archived issues. Non-members and others wishing to subscribe to Youth Theatre Journal please go here:


Announcing the first open call for the re-imagined YTJ! Consistent with the AATE EDIA mission, YTJ has revised its structure and criteria with the goal of opening the space up to a multiplicity of voices and bodies, ways of seeing and sharing the world of drama, theatre, and performance arts by, for, and with young people. YTJ aims to lead and expand the scholarship and development of theatre and drama by, for, and with young people. We invite you to join us on that journey. YTJ is open for submission from ANYONE from any area of our field, from teachers, artists, students, and researchersPlease see HERE for submission criteria.

YTJ Leadership

Ansley Valentine

Ansley Valentine is a professional director for the theatre and musical theatre and an educator with experience teaching professionally at the collegiate level and in both public and private performing arts high schools. Ansley holds an M.F.A. in Directing from Indiana University. He is currently a proud member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC) and Actors' Equity Association (AEA). Some of his favorite productions include Les Misérables, The Colored Museum, Twelfth Night, and many new plays. Ansley is also a graduate of the Arts Midwest Minorities in Arts Administration Fellowship, a program funded by the Ford Foundation to increase minority representation in leadership roles at American not-for-profit organizations. His many awards include a Kennedy Center Gold Medallion. He is a company member at Fonseca Theatre in Indianapolis and Actors’ Reading Collective in the San Francisco Bay Area. His work has been seen at many theatres around the country. 

Dana Edell

Dana Edell (she/her), MFA, PhD, is an activist-scholar-artist-educator. She has co-directed 75+ original plays and 7 music albums written and performed by teenage girls and nonbinary youth addressing social and racial justice issues and has worked as a theater teaching artist in both public and independent elementary, middle and high schools, and adult and youth prisons. She’s the co-director of SPARK Movement, an intergenerational, antiracist, arts-driven activist organization where she has trained and supported girls to design and run arts-based activist campaigns and take action in their communities. She consults with organizations globally about gender justice, youth activism, anti-racist practice for White folx, feminist Jewish education and arts integration. She has published chapters and articles in more than a dozen books and journals, and is the author of Girls, Performance and Activism: Demanding to Be Heard (Routledge, 2022). She is an Assistant Professor of Applied Theatre at Emerson College.

Elena Stephenson
Managing Director

Elena Stephenson is based in Kansas City and well versed in performing, directing, and educating. In the Spring of 2022, she released her first ever zine of poetry and short narrative, The Pink Wall Series. While raising a fiery redhead, she is an arts education advocate by day and cultural community activist by night.  She holds a BFA in Acting/Directing from ACU, as well as a MA in Educational Theatre from NYU. She has worked as a teaching artist for 15+ years. Her essay "The Fundamentals of the Pedagogy of a Teaching Artist" was published in The Teaching Artist Journal, Vol 1 Issue 15. She has worked as a Lead Teaching Artist for The Coterie, as well as a Pre-K Drama Teacher for KC based arts organization, Shining Stars. She currently works as the Theatre and Performing Arts Coordinator for the award-winning recreation and culture facility, The Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center, located in Johnson County, Kansas.

Back issues of YTJ must now be ordered directly from Taylor and Francis. Email [email protected].