Engaging the community beyond the show

The Center’s Community First Community Engagement Series welcomes hundreds of participants each year to dig deeper into performances through presentations, workshops and other activities that make the arts come alive.
Most recently, prior to the performance of ETHEL and Native American flutist Robert Mirabal in The River, Oneida Storyteller Debra Morningstar engaged audiences by exploring the role nature plays in Native American tradition. Through her traditional dress and exquisite storytelling she took more than 100 audience members on a journey that prepared them to continue the story through music when the show began.
“The community engagement event drastically enhanced my experience of The River as it showed how a story can be told through ways other than just verbally. It prepared me to visualize different story elements so much that during The River performance I could visualize a different story happening for each piece they performed,” said Destiny, a patron.
In the Main Lobby, Jennifer Stevens displayed Iroquois pottery, showing another Native American art form that would complement the patron experience before and after the show.
“(The activities were) something new, but related. Things like this can expand our understanding of the world,” said Ron, a patron.
Throughout the season, the Center will continue to focus on ways to engage the community in upcoming performances and unique art forms. In the past the Center has partnered with cultural organizations, fitness and dance studios, libraries, comedy troupes, veterans organizations and more to enhance the experience of patrons.  Events are being planned with various community partners for Miss Saigon, The Tap Pack, The Band’s Visit and many more, so be sure to check back at often for updates.
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