Supposition Is No Support As NEA Is Threatened

February 20th, 2017 § Comments Off on Supposition Is No Support As NEA Is Threatened § permalink

Let’s start with the positive, though I’m afraid that won’t last long. In her New York Times article, “Might Ivanka Trump Speak Up If Her Father Guts The Arts?,” Robin Pogrebin makes a series of suppositions rooted in an aspect of arts education that is rarely discussed. That element is the reality that the vast majority of students – elementary, secondary, university – who study or participate in the arts won’t probably go on to careers in the arts. However, their exposure Continue reading...

Music Ed Head Casts Doubts on Diverse Student Talent

May 10th, 2016 § Comments Off on Music Ed Head Casts Doubts on Diverse Student Talent § permalink

The statements, on their face, are utterly startling. “Blacks and Latinos lack the keyboard skills needed for this field.” “I don’t have to take this. Yes, my board is all white, and they are one of the most diverse boards of any organization – more than any arts organization at this table.” It was implied that musical theory is too difficult for black and Latinos as an area of study. These remarks were attributed to Michael Butera, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of Continue reading...

Senator Coburn Trolls The Arts With Annual P.R. Ploy

November 3rd, 2014 § Comments Off on Senator Coburn Trolls The Arts With Annual P.R. Ploy § permalink

In the song “The Book Report” from the musical You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown, Lucy van Pelt struggles to complete her homework assignment: 100 words on Peter Rabbit. Falling short, she concludes it thusly: “And they were very very very very very very happy to be home. The very very very end.” In honor of this blatant effort to reach a designated threshold without utilizing meaningful content, I would like to present the very very very first “Lucy Van Pelt Award for Verbal and Political Continue reading...

Seriously President Obama: The NEA?

November 21st, 2013 § Comments Off on Seriously President Obama: The NEA? § permalink

November 21, 2013 President Barack Obama 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Washington DC  20500 Dear President Obama: There was an anniversary yesterday, and I’m willing to bet that you forgot all about it. You didn’t need to send a card, but it would have been nice if you’d made some gesture of recognition, of concern. Presidents often do that sort of thing, especially when they’re stalling about something. But since you were silent, I’ll remind you: yesterday was the one-year anniversary Continue reading...

Arts Data Can’t Be Ignored (Until Science Builds Mr. Data)

September 27th, 2013 § Comments Off on Arts Data Can’t Be Ignored (Until Science Builds Mr. Data) § permalink

If yesterday’s news that theatre attendance is down more precipitously than any of the arts caused you to spit out your coffee over breakfast, well that’s probably because you haven’t been paying attention. To be fair, I suspect a lot of people haven’t been, with virtually every discussion of the performing arts in since 2008 having been prefaced with either “in these challenging times” or “since the financial meltdown of 2008.” But the time for qualifiers and excuses is clearly Continue reading...

Arts Participation Reports And Theatre Whiplash

September 26th, 2013 § 1 comment § permalink

If you’ve been reading The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times this week, attempting to find out how the arts as a whole are doing, you would likely get a fairly consistent picture coming from the efforts of those two sources, and it doesn't bode well for the arts in America. But if your focus happens to be on theatre, your head might spin from seeming conflicts. On Monday, September 23, in The Los Angeles Times, Mike Boehm reported the Americans for the Arts just issued National Arts Continue reading...

Dear President Obama: About The NEA…

June 26th, 2013 § 1 comment § permalink

June 26, 2013 President Barack Obama 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Washington DC  20500 Dear President Obama: I realize it’s been a busy week, what with the overturning of the Defense of Marriage Act today and the gutting of the Voting Rights Act yesterday. I know you’ve just begun a weeklong trip to Africa and presumably get home just in time for some fireworks (actual, not political) next week. But we’ve really got to talk about this NEA thing. I’m referring, of course, to Continue reading...