Lane Bio pic 10:2018.jpeg

LANE GARDNER

Director of Programming

A self-proclaimed student of Humanity, Lane has spent her entire life in pursuit of one thing…  helping herself and others to feel better through the impact of creative expression and the sharing of story.  

Creative expression has shaped individuals and society for as long as human history can be traced.  Creative expression has been a vehicle to celebrate, examine, protest, inspire, dissect, preserve, share, grieve, connect, teach, embolden, challenge…and ultimately, to heal.

 Creative expression can be a catalyst to transform difficult experiences into powerful testaments of courage and strength. It can be a catalyst to expand one’s sense of self and self knowledge, increasing confidence and greater connection with others.  Creative expression can be a catalyst to draw out innate gifts and talents, deepen authenticity and broaden our view of ourselves and the world around us. It can be a catalyst for finding one’s voice, speaking one’s truth and developing tools for navigating the ups and downs of life. 

Creative expression can be a catalyst to change the world,

 one person at a time,  

from the inside out.  

Lane Gardner is an Arts Catalyst.

For nearly 25 years, Lane has brought this passion and expertise to all of her endeavors. As an award-winning and nationally recognized Arts Educator, Singer/Songwriter and Music Ascension’s Director of Programming, she is considered an innovator in Human Development Through the Arts.

A graduate of Cincinnati Conservatory of Music (CCM), Lane got an early start in the Arts as a child, performing in community theater, state choirs and honors chorales, studying classical voice and winning several vocal competitions and scholarships including the Columbus Symphony Young Artists Competition. She began working professionally as a singer/actor while still at Conservatory and went on to perform roles as varied as Eliza in My Fair Lady at Lyric Opera Cleveland to Laura in The Glass Menagerie at Seaside Music Theater to the title role in Antigone at the West End Theater in NYC. 

Lane’s work in education began while still in school herself, designing and facilitating after-school Arts programs in local elementary schools as well as teaching private voice and piano lessons.  Deeply aware of how powerfully the Arts had impacted her own development as a young person, she created a multi-faceted approach to working with the WHOLE CHILD, using a wide range of learning modalities to create a safe, supportive and individualized learning process designed to draw out each students’ unique strengths and talents.

 Lane has taught in pubic and private schools, schools of Special Education, youth centers and residential summer camps across the country, in addition to Arts organizations including The Metropolitan Opera Guild and Conservatory of Performing Arts. She has worked with innumerable students in general education, students with Special Needs, at-risk-youth as well as Gifted and Talented, developing innovative programming through music, drama, storytelling and songwriting and recording.

As Director of Programming for Music Ascension, Lane has been instrumental in expanding the work Music Ascension offers. In addition to overseeing our signature Songwriting and Recording programs, Lane consults with our partners to design, manage, facilitate Staff Developments and oversee highly specialized Arts programming to include Music Therapy, drama/improv, Drama Therapy, drum circles, backstage production and cross-currucular Arts programming to enhance learning and development in academic subjects.

Lane and Pete received the 2016 Innovations in Special Education Award from ASAH and the New Jersey School Board Association as well as the 2017 national Award for Leadership and Innovation in Special Education from NAPSEC. 

As an artist, Lane has moved from her early work on the stage into the studio. In 2015 Lane recorded her debut album entitled Fertile Ground, a heart-rendering and soulful collection of her deeply personal stories, which was an independent release on her own record label Third Road Records. Hard to fit into one particular genre, Lane’s music has a timelessness to it.  Sometimes gospel, with even a bit of southern grit here and there, her perhaps old-school sound harkens back to trailblazing female singer/songwriters like Carole King and Joni Mitchell while her cutting lyrics evoke the stylistic honesty of Ani DiFranco and Adele.  She has performed in NYC area venues including The Bitter End, The National Underground, Groov Cafe and The Metropolitan Room and is a regular contributor to Arts awareness and fund-raising events and concerts.  Lane’s music can be heard on various streaming sites including iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Music and Soundcloud.  For more about her music and work as a singer/songwriter you can visit her at:

Throughout her career, Lane’s passion and dedication to Human Development through the Arts has also led her to create and facilitate workshops and motivational talks for adults, in particular women’s groups, parents of children with Special Needs, survivors and those who have experienced trauma.  She frequently presents her workshop series Stories Connect: The Power of Sharing Your Story at the Jung Center of New York which explores the healing potential of sharing one’s story through a creative form. 

In the summer of 2018, Lane and Pete were invited to work with students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS in Parkland, FL to facilitate a songwriting and recording project at Camp Shine/Shine MSD through their Healing Through the Arts Initiative. Working alongside Music Therapist Bree Gordon, Lane’s unique sensory songwriting process held safe space for the students to write and record a cathartic, honest and powerful song that sheds light on the emotional aftermath of their tragedy.  Preliminary findings from a study administered by the University of Miami Psychology Department during Camp Shine have shown substantial improvement in the students’ emotional lives and daily functioning as a result of their own creative expression with the support of Creative Arts Therapists. Please listen here:

At the culmination of nearly 25 years on the leading edge of this work, Lane’s reach is now expanding into building T H R E A D, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing about change and transformation though the power of creative expression.  Through partnering with philanthropic and humanitarian organizations, T H R E A D can serve larger social activist movements and communities in need, helping to connect, inspire, embolden…and ultimately, heal through the power of sharing our stories.