The Resonance of Twilight, Los Angeles, 1992: An Interview with Anna Deveare Smith

March 28, 2021—I recently had the phenomenal opportunity to see an intimate, virtual interview with one of our nation’s greatest artistic treasures—the playwright, actress, author, NYU professor and scholar Anna Deveare Smith, which was sponsored by the Signature Theatre’s Artistic Director’s Circle and conducted by Artistic Director Paige Evans. Credited with creating a new form of theater in which she combines the journalistic techniques of … Continue reading The Resonance of Twilight, Los Angeles, 1992: An Interview with Anna Deveare Smith

Celebrating Juneteenth as We Continue to Fight for Equality

June 13, 2021—Juneteenth 2021 is turning into one of the biggest national celebrations ever, with growing numbers of states, cities, and corporations recognizing it as a holiday. I am pleased to see that the arts are at the heart of many of the celebrations, including in Galveston, Texas, the birthplace of Juneteenth. Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, the day that an estimated quarter-of-a-million enslaved people … Continue reading Celebrating Juneteenth as We Continue to Fight for Equality

Standing in Solidarity with Black Women in the Workplace

March 21, 2021—This past week, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Standing in Solidarity Series presented a brilliant program titled “She Did That: Black Women in the Workplace.” The event, which was co-sponsored by Women@NJPAC in celebration of Women’s History Month, was based on the PSEG True Diversity Film Series presentation of the inspiring documentary She Did Thatby Renae Bluitt, and it also featured an … Continue reading Standing in Solidarity with Black Women in the Workplace

America’s Cultural Treasures: POC Arts Organizations to Receive Grants

 I was excited and thrilled to recently read in the Washington Post about the Ford Foundation’s announcement that it has partnered with several foundations and major donors to make available millions of dollars in unrestricted national and regional grants to arts organizations in the communities of People of Color (PoC)! The grants are part of a still-expanding campaign called “America’s Cultural Treasures,” which was initiated … Continue reading America’s Cultural Treasures: POC Arts Organizations to Receive Grants

NJPAC Panel discusses Role of “White Allyship”

The New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s PSEG True Diversity Film Series recently sponsored a virtual panel of all white advocates titled, “White Fragility—A Conversation About Allyship,” which I believe will be of interest to the readers of Arts & Culture Connections. A week prior to the event, participants were encouraged to watch a video about the book, White Fragility, read by author Robin DiAngelo. More … Continue reading NJPAC Panel discusses Role of “White Allyship”

How the Arts Can Help Combat Bias and Injustice

Since the tragic murder of George Floyd a month ago, there have been several news reports about the hundreds of millions of dollars pledged and/or donated to organizations committed to fighting for racial justice, equity, diversity and inclusion, or to address unconscious bias. I believe a portion of this money should be shared with arts organizations to help facilitate and foster the social changes necessary … Continue reading How the Arts Can Help Combat Bias and Injustice

Arts Organizations Engage in Dialogues About Racial Injustice

Like many of my readers of Arts & Culture Connections, I have spent the past week engaged in numerous discussions about how the arts can help bridge and heal the societal chasms and wounds created by racism, racial injustice, and state-sanctioned violence. The videotaped murders of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, as well as the deaths of Breonna Taylor and Toni McDade, have shown the … Continue reading Arts Organizations Engage in Dialogues About Racial Injustice

Standing in Solidarity to Stop Violence Against Asian-Americans

Photo Credit: Used with permission of NJPAC May 16, 2021—The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) recently sponsored an important virtual panel discussion about the epidemic of hate crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) and the need for allyship. The program was another installment of NJPAC’s Standing in Solidarity, a series of initiatives and events promoting racial equality and social justice. The series … Continue reading Standing in Solidarity to Stop Violence Against Asian-Americans

HARLEM WEEK 2020: Going Virtual in the time of COVID-19

I LOVE HARLEM WEEK! From bringing artists to the festival for exposure to helping with the planning and the execution of marketing plans, I have been involved with this legendary arts and cultural festival for more than 30 years. As I have previously shared with the readers of Arts & Culture Connections, this event is an extraordinary example of business, civic and cultural organizations joining … Continue reading HARLEM WEEK 2020: Going Virtual in the time of COVID-19

Virtual Screening and Panel Draws Thousands to Honor the Life and Work of Rep. John Lewis

This past Monday, I was among the thousands of people nationwide who participated in the virtual watch party and interactive, online panel discussion about Good Trouble, the documentary that showcases the phenomenal history and life’s work of the late U.S. Representative John Lewis. Directed by Dawn Porter, the documentary is both riveting and humanistic. As I watched the film, I fell in love with John … Continue reading Virtual Screening and Panel Draws Thousands to Honor the Life and Work of Rep. John Lewis