August 6, 2023—Despite the attempted pushback against much-needed and necessary Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Access programs, I am always grateful to hear about Champions for the Arts who are still working for and promoting these essential values.
I recently learned about the work being done by Sheri Notaro, Vice President of People and Culture at the Minnesota Orchestra. She was interviewed on Arts Engines with Aaron Dworkin. I urge the readers of Arts & Culture Connections to check out the videocast at this link.
Ms. Notaro is responsible for providing the orchestra with strategic direction and tactical support for all Human Resources functions; diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs, and anti-racism initiatives.
The orchestra made headline news in 2020 for immediately severing ties with the Minneapolis Police Department after the murder of George Floyd. The police department provided security at its concert hall. In the anti-racism statement posted on its website, the Minnesota Orchestra reaffirmed its commitment “to use music to communicate and bridge cultures, guided by our three core values: Listen, Respect, Collaborate.”
Last fall, among its DEI efforts was the “More to Hear: the Listening Project,” which was a concert that highlighted composers from underrepresented backgrounds. The orchestra also has a fellowship program.
Launched in 2020, Arts Engines’ videocasts and the host, Aaron Dworkin, offer the opportunity to learn from the perspectives of thought leaders who are making a significant impact in all facets of the arts. Arts Engines is conducted in partnership with Detroit Public Television, Ovation TV, The Violin Channel and American Public Media.