Blog Posts for Pennsylvania

Managing Change and Maintaining Relevance: Business Volunteers for the Arts®

Posted by Eileen Cunniffe, May 18, 2016 0 comments

Engaging with the business community has always been the hallmark of the Arts + Business Council of Greater Philadelphia; we were established in 1981 and are an affiliate of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce. As an extension, our core programs revolve around engaging the employees of businesses, harnessing their skills and talents for the nonprofit arts sector.

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Paper ROCKS-Glatfelter Paper and the YorVoice Music Showcase

Posted by Ms. Kelley Gibson, May 17, 2016 0 comments

Founded as a United Arts Fund for York County Pennsylvania in 1999, the Cultural Alliance of York County's annual campaign supports eight partner agencies that are essential to our cultural core and funds the Creative Impact Award grants that bring arts and culture to life in York County.

In an effort to promote camaraderie/fellowship in the workplace for our local corporate contributors and deepen their involvement in the Cultural Alliance annual campaign, the Cultural Alliance created YorVoice in 2015. The event brought 10 local musical acts that varied in style and genre together for a friendly singing competition. Based on the model of the Cincinnati-based ArtsWave United Arts Fund choral competition event; “CincySings,” the Cultural Alliance recruited teams from corporate contributors, as well as local performers who wanted to participate and showcase their talents to a larger audience. We had a panel of celebrity judges rank the teams to award a first place Champion and Runner Up. We also created a People’s Choice category, which awarded the People’s Choice trophy to the team with the most votes, $1 per vote.

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Starting an Arts Caucus Doesn’t Happen Overnight…

Posted by Jenny Hershour, Apr 13, 2016 1 comment

South Carolina Arts Alliance’s Betty Plumb, always an inspiration to me, had spoken for years about the Arts Caucus in South Carolina’s legislature. It was large and seemed very responsive to Betty and her arts advocates. To be honest, I was slightly jealous. But after speaking for some length with Betty about the caucus, I was determined to start one in Pennsylvania. I mean, how hard could it be, with the largest full-time legislature in the nation? 

I first knew we—the Pennsylvania Citizens for the Arts Board of Directors at and I—had to identify the initial contact in the Pennsylvania General Assembly. Our likely candidate was Senator Jay Costa (D-Allegheny). He had served on the Council of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA) and was on the board of directors at several Pittsburgh area arts and culture organizations. My board chair, Mitch Swain, approached Sen. Costa about this idea to start a bi-cameral, bi-partisan Arts Caucus. We were positive the only way the caucus would work is for both Houses and political caucus to work together. To our delight, Sen. Costa thought the idea was great, agreed to act as a co-chair, and took on the task of identifying the other three Arts Caucus leaders.

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The Arts Help Us Find Comfort, Peace, and Unity

Posted by Robert Lynch, Dec 30, 2015 0 comments

2015 is almost over, and what a year of successes and changes we've had as a country. The unemployment rate dropped to its lowest level in more than seven years; the Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage nationwide; a landmark climate change agreement was approved; the U.S. embassy reopened in Cuba after 54 years; and a week ago, the Every Student Succeeds Act passed--a tremendous win for arts education. The arts won a number of other legislative victories too, such as increased federal arts funding and arts-friendly legislation regarding both IRA tax rollovers and visa law along with key successes at the state and local levels.

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New Ways to Talk About Art, Artists, and Community

Posted by Margy Waller, Dec 22, 2015 0 comments

A young dancer recently told me she would be so happy if architects of community change and innovation and planning came to her with a request to put her skills to work for her community. Nothing would make her happier as an artist.

She’s just waiting for the invite! So, why doesn't this happen more often? And why do artists find it so hard to get a seat at the community planning table?

In recent meetings about the role of arts in community building and development, including the four regional meetings of the New Community Visions Initiative this fall, participants from the arts told us that they have a hard time getting a seat at that table. They sense that people in other sectors don’t seem to take arts seriously as a community development partner.

 

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