Series of Concerts, Workshops, and Cultural Events Create a Bridge to the Arts with West Dallas
Legendary Grammy Award-winning singer Aida Cuevas and her band Mariachi Juvenil Tecaltitlán will help launch ArtsBridge – Powered by Toyota, a new program which connects West Dallas residents with cultural experiences both within their community and at the AT&T Performing Arts Center in the Dallas Arts District.
Cuevas will speak (in Spanish) about her life, at a free public conversation at Anita Martinez Recreation Center in West Dallas on Monday, October 15 at 7:00 p.m. That’s the day before her concert in Annette Strauss Square at the AT&T Performing Arts Center. Also on Monday at the recreation center, her band will give free master classes for local mariachi musicians and students. The following night, Tuesday, October 16 at 8:00 p.m., ArtsBridge will provide 100 residents with tickets and transportation to the Aida Cuevas concert.
Another ArtsBridge project will focus on hip-hop with an extended series of afterschool workshops for teens at Mercy Street Dallas. The workshops will explore the four pillars of hip-hop (breakdancing, street art, emceeing and DJ-ing) providing new cultural avenues for self-expression. When the workshops are completed, the students will attend the March concert in Strauss Square of the popular hip-hop instrumentalist duo Black Violin.
These are some of the ArtsBridge programs created with input from West Dallas community groups and leaders.
“We have really enjoyed engaging with West Dallas, a neighborhood with a rich cultural history,” says Debbie Storey, interim president and CEO of the AT&T Performing Arts Center. “We listened to what the community wanted and came back with a really creative series of things we hope will better connect West Dallas with the arts in a new and exciting way.”
ArtsBridge is supported with a grant from Toyota, and builds on the company’s engagement in West Dallas.
“ArtsBridge supports our commitment to inclusion by improving access to artistic experiences for residents both where they live and at the Center,” said Christopher Reynolds, EVP, Corporate Resources and Chief Diversity Officer – Toyota Motor North America. “This partnership adds a cultural component to our investment in the community.”
“We hope it inspires youth and opens up a world of possibility to them,” added Reynolds.
Initial ArtsBridge community partners include Mercy Street Dallas, Anita Martinez Recreation Center, Sidney Lanier Expressive Arts Vanguard, and L.G. Pinkston High School.
Spanish-language broadcaster Univision 23 Dallas is the official broadcast media partner for ArtsBridge.
“West Dallas is the perfect location for a program like ArtsBridge,” said Dallas City Councilmember Omar Narvaez, who represents the community. “It’s full of opportunity and creative people who are ready to collaborate and make original cultural experiences happen.”
More details on the first two ArtsBridge programs:
- On Monday, October 15 at 7:00 p.m., the Grammy Award-winning Aida Cuevas will discuss her prestigious career as “the Queen of Ranchera Music” during a free community conversation conducted in Spanish at Anita Martinez Recreation Center. That discussion will be moderated by Univision 23’s host of Otra Onda, Raúl Solís Glez.
- Ms. Cuevas’ band, Mariachi Juvenil Tecalitlán, will teach a free master class for West Dallas Mariachi musicians.
- 100 West Dallas residents will enjoy free tickets and transportation to her concert in Strauss Square on Tuesday, October 16 at 8:00 p.m.
PILLARS OF HIP-HOP/BLACK VIOLIN
- A series of afterschool hip-hop workshops for teens at Mercy Street Dallas begins October 8 and runs into March. Students will discover new outlets for self-expression exploring the four pillars of hip-hop through their existing interests in breakdancing, DJ-ing, street art and emceeing.
- In March, students will attend a performance at the Center in Strauss Square to see the hip-hop-inspired instrumentalist duo Black Violin.
- The Black Violin artists will also conduct a masterclass with Sidney Lanier Expressive Arts Vanguard students from West Dallas. Those students will be invited to perform on the stage with Black Violin in Strauss Square that night.
Additional community and education programs are being planned for West Dallas in the first half of 2019.