The New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival is the statewide culminating celebration of the arts dedicated to inspiring New Jersey teen artists, educators, professional artists and arts advocates from all across the state to unite as one grand and all-inclusive community. The New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival hosts a plethora of activities, focused towards recognizing the accomplishments of the Garden State's teen artists by showcasing their creative efforts in the literary, performing and visual arts. The showcases presented by these accomplished students at the New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival have been nominated by their home counties to appear as exemplary representatives of the outstanding artistic talent blossoming all throughout New Jersey’s local communities. In addition to highlighting the accomplishments of the state’s talented teen artists, the New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival is committed to furthering the interests of all who are in attendance by providing Master Class Workshops for Students, Professional Development for Teachers and College Fair composed of higher education institutions dedicated to developing professionals with passions to pursue careers surrounding the arts.

Festival Workshops

Check out the Festival Workshops & plan your day at the NJ State Teen Arts Festival!

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ShowcaseS & Adjudications


Learn more about the Showcase & Adjudication Process at the NJ State Teen Arts Festival!

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The first State Teen Arts Festival was held at McCarter Theater in 1969, it was a collaborative planning effort by New Jersey arts educators, the State Department of Education, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Arts & Education Center, the New Jersey State Museum and McCarter Theater.


During the three festival days of the New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival, esteemed young artists, teachers and professional artists from around the state come to critique, as well as to teach workshops and master classes in their individual specialties, including drama, filmmaking, voice, acting, instrumental music and more.

Prior to the New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival, at County Teen Arts Festivals, students in their home schools prepare and practice their chosen art presentations for critiques and critical analysis, in one or two arts disciplines. Students who excel in their particular art form at their County Teen Arts Festival are selected to be sent to the state level. Only students who are invited to participate can be adjudicated by state level judges.

During the State Festival, students who have been invited can receive valuable feedback about their art in group and individual critiques, both written and verbal, and often “sit-in” on the critiques of other emerging artists in their discipline, increasing their educational experience. Professional artists at the Festival provide in-depth critical reviews and analysis of student work, performances and group presentations, a process that all students report to be most beneficial to their growth as artists.

In addition to the critiques, workshops and master classes will be provided to expose student artists to help students develop perceptual, intellectual and technical skills; gain cultural awareness and understanding; and develop personal aesthetic values. 

All New Jersey high schools and middle schools that have registered for the New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival are welcome to send students to participate in our workshops and classes.


*The New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival is made possible by a collaboration among the organizations listed below*


This program has been made possible in part by a grant from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.