Dear Colleague, Imagine a world without theater, music, dance, visual arts, books or the support of our essential cultural institutions. Unfortunately, the current political climate has awakened us all to the possibility that we may be standing at the threshold of what could become be a dark, abysmal and soulless landscape. Against that backdrop, today, I am launching my new blog to champion the arts, … Continue reading Welcome to My Blog: Arts and Culture Connections
Photo Credit: Brenda Williams-Butts. January 17, 2021—I am delighted to share with the readers of Arts & Culture Connections the news about an important executive appointment at New York Public Radio: Brenda Williams-Butts has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. The powerhouse NYPR owns and operates WNYC AM and FM, WQXR, the four stations of New Jersey Public Radio, the … Continue reading Brenda Williams-Butts Promoted to SVP of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
January 10, 2021—Like many around the nation and the world, I watched in horror and disbelief as insurrectionists attempted to take over the U.S. Capitol to block the certification by the U.S. Congress of the results of the presidential election of Joe Biden. Incited by the outgoing president and his supporters in Congress, the violent mob action resulted in the deaths of at least five … Continue reading Arts Leaders Speak Out About Capitol Riot
January 3, 2021—I am excited about the new beginnings 2021 offers for so many reasons! I know we all endured unimaginable challenges and struggles in 2020, but I hope you can join me in celebrating the fact that we survived! And some of us even thrived! Despite the shuttering of our nation’s most vital arts institutions and organizations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have … Continue reading Happy New Beginnings!
December 27, 2020—Throughout 2020, I have been keenly aware of the significant efforts by several Champions of the Arts to fight for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Access (EDI&A) despite the three pandemics our entire nation has been experiencing (COVID-19, racial injustice, and political divide). As we close out the year, I have chosen to highlight for the readers of Arts &Culture Connections three organizations and … Continue reading My 2020 List of Champions of the Arts
December 20, 2020—I recently had the privilege of moderating a powerful discussion as part of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Standing in Solidarity social justice series, which featured some of the most visionary thinkers in the world of the arts. The theme of the program was inspired by and named after Oprah Winfrey’s two-part documentary, “Where Do We Go From Here?” The audience was … Continue reading Arts Leaders Offer a Vision for the Future
The 48th annual Vivian Robinson/AUDELCO Recognition Awards were presented on November 30. 2020, during a stellar virtual ceremony. Known as “The Vivs,” the awards are the only formally established acknowledgment of excellence for the Black theater community. The awards recognize playwrights, actors, directors, composers, designers and Black theater companies in Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway productions. Often compared with the Tony Awards®, the emotional and celebratory … Continue reading AUDELCO Reminds Us #BlackTheaterMatters
December 6, 2020—One of my favorite ways to celebrate the holiday season during the month of December has been to take my daughter to see several performances of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater as it kicks-off its annual season at the New York City Center. However, like all arts organizations, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting … Continue reading “Revelations” Turns 60!
November 29, 2020—I recently was invited to moderate a discussion with thought leaders representing the nonprofit arts sector and the Broadway industry about the future of the arts in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Convened by the Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce, the theme of the Virtual Action Summit was “Arts, Culture and Beyond: What’s Next?”. It was interesting to hear the participants share … Continue reading Virtual Action Summit Looks at “What’s Next?”
November 22, 2020—Last month, the Newark Arts Festival boldly took the leap to the virtual platform, holding its annual three-day event online. It was a major undertaking, and I believe the readers of Arts & Culture Connections can benefit from some of the behind-the-scenes insights Marcy DePina has to share. Marcy is the President of the Board of Directors for Newark Arts, and rolled up … Continue reading The Newark Arts Festival’s Bold Leap to Virtual Platform
November 15, 2020: Capacity Interactive recently held its Boot Camp 2020 to examine the most pressing issues facing the arts today. This year, due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the two-day event was virtual, bringing together arts leaders to explore a broad array of issues, including rethinking how to connect to audiences; digital platform programming; equity and inclusion, leadership and wellness. One … Continue reading Insights for Leading During Chaotic Times