I’ve been longing to do The Secret Garden for over 20 years. For almost as long I’ve treasured the music of Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame. I even used a song from “Hunchback” as an audition piece for many years. This month I chose one over the other for next fall’s musical even though I had already announced that we were doing the other. This was not a decision made lightly. In the end, this was not an artistic decision so much as it was a financial one. Quite frankly, “Hunchback” will sell better. You may well be surprised how many artistic decisions come down to financial realities. The performing artists of our nation may soon be facing an even greater financial reality. And if you are reading this blog, this affects you too:
- If you’ve ever experienced The Peking Acrobats or Cirque Zuma Zuma or any of the other great touring productions that grace our stage every season, this affects you!
- If you or a family member has ever performed in Missoula Children’s Theatre or with Lula Washington, this affects you!
There has been great speculation of late about the possible elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The NEA and NEH provide nationwide grants that impact every congressional district and fuel the national funding structures that give critical support for state arts agencies and regional arts organizations that make much of the PAC’s programming possible.
So, what can you do if you value the arts?
- Sign up for the Americans for the Arts’ Arts Action Fund; it is free to join, and you will receive current information and simple action steps you can take in a few minutes time that will make a difference.
- Contact your federal elected officials (preferably by a phone), and communicate the value of the arts and your belief that the federal government should support the cultural sector. Share specific stories with them about how the arts enrich your local community.
- Check with the Kentucky Arts Council to see how you can sign up to be kept informed of legislative efforts to advance the arts in Hardin County.
If you believe in the importance of art to enrich communities, now is a great time to act.
This month the PAC Kid Spotlight shines on Madison Fogle. She and her Central Hardin classmates are due this month at the PAC to mount a series of one act plays – always a great way to showcase the talents of many students as well as great for those of us with short attention spans.