Blog Posts for Massachusetts

How Boston Bucked the Trend in Arts Education

Posted by Laura Perille, May 31, 2016 0 comments

Laura Perille is an Americans for the Arts member and recipient of the 2016 Arts Education Award. Find out more about the Americans for the Arts Annual Leadership Arts Awards.

We all know the narrative: arts education has suffered from years of neglect and decline in our schools to make room for tested subjects and to balance squeezed school budgets. This trend has played out in many communities across the country. The data on arts access, especially for students of color and those from disadvantaged backgrounds, makes the impact clear.

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The 9 Questions You Need to Answer to Run a Winning Arts Advocacy Campaign

Posted by Matt Wilson, Apr 12, 2016 7 comments

For many artists and cultural leaders, being a part of a political campaign is the farthest thing from their mind. Concentrating on a new creative inspiration, the upcoming show, ticket sales, are often the #1 focus for an artist or arts administrator.

Yet, we all have to remember the arts and cultural community is a public good. Like schools, police departments, and roads, the arts deserve public investment as they are vital to the health and vibrancy of our communities.

Public policy decided by our political leaders is a major factor in deciding the level of resources and support for the creative sector’s work. If the arts, cultural, and creative community wants the resources and support necessary to build vibrant, healthy and equitable communities, it has to start embracing and running political campaigns to build that public support.

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10 THINK-ACTION STEPS when thinking about diversity

Posted by Sobha Kavanakudiyil, Apr 08, 2016 4 comments

I have been involved in many deep discussions regarding diversity and often leave the conversations thinking, what can I do?

I realized that I needed to start by making  PERSONAL CHANGE—TO LISTEN AND NOT JUST HAVE AN AGENDA. Based on conversations, interactions with people, and my own person soul searching I’ve arrived at what I call the 10 Think-Action Steps regarding diversity.

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The Arts and Social Justice: Bridging Artistic Excellence and Social Justice Transformation

Posted by Myran Parker-Brass, Apr 06, 2016 0 comments

With the rise in racial tension and violence in our communities, the question of how we engage our communities in meaningful civic discourse is being asked across the country—particularly how do we engage our young people and help them understand how to include their “voice” in the discussion? The arts have a long standing place in building a bridge between artistic expression and social justice. “Music and the arts are often the glue that helps hold a movement together, providing a sounding board and an emotional support structure,” says Anthony Trecek-King, Artistic Director for the Boston Children’s Chorus, BCC, during our recent discussion about BCC’s unique mission.

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3 Steps to Success for Equity and Access

Posted by Jeanette McCune, Apr 04, 2016 0 comments

As a nation, we all agree that it is beneficial for every child to receive a comprehensive education, inclusive of the arts. How to operationalize this has been more elusive and challenging. Collective Impact, as shared in the Stanford Social Innovation Review article written by John Kania and Mark Kramer, outlines the conditions for broad, systemic change in social issues, and has been successfully implemented in a variety of communities across the country, including initiatives to support arts education.   

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The Passion of Arts Advocates Driving Change: Kennedy, U.S. Lawmakers, and You

Posted by Robert Lynch, Mar 30, 2016 0 comments

Earlier this month I was in Cambridge, Massachusetts, giving a lecture on arts and public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Policy. In lieu of standard hotel accommodations, I was offered the chance to stay in John F. Kennedy's senior year suite in Winthrop House—and of course I jumped at it. Sitting down at Kennedy’s desk—complete with an Underwood portable typewriter—I was profoundly moved. I thought of his inspiring words and they resonated with the event and work of the week to come, Arts Advocacy Day, when citizen advocates take to Capitol Hill to make the case for federal support for the arts and arts education.

I am certain that after the dust of centuries has passed over our cities, we, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics, but for our contribution to the human spirit.

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