PNC Foundation awards $125,000 in grants
LAKE WORTH — The PNC Foundation’s Arts Alive program Thursday awarded $125,000 in grants and sponsorships to eight arts organizations in the Palm Beaches to increase access to visual and performing arts activities for children.
Arts Alive is a multi-year initiative of the PNC Foundation dedicated to supporting visual and performing arts groups with the goal of increasing arts access and engagement. The foundation is an arm of Pittsburgh-based banking giant PNC Financial Services.
The funding is part of a three-year award PNC announced last year to bring PNC Arts Alive to the Palm Beaches. Four organizations will share $67,500 in grants, while the other four will receive $57,500 in sponsorships.
The nonprofit winners represent a wide range of disciplines, audiences and participatory experiences from local arts groups, including Ann Norton Sculpture Garden, Miami City Ballet, Mounts Botanical Center and the Milagro Center in Delray Beach, among others.
“We recognize that quality arts programming builds stronger, more vibrant communities, which ultimately helps drive business and economic development,” Cressman Bronson, PNC regional president for Florida East, said in a statement.
“Through PNC Arts Alive, some of the region’s best visual and performing arts groups showcase their passion and talent, all while helping the public experience the arts in fun and thought-provoking ways,” he said.
Statewide, the arts and culture industry generates $4.68 billion of economic activity, according to the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs. The Cultural Council of Palm Beach County reports that its creative industry is responsible for 15,543 jobs and $525 million in annual economic impact in the region.
“The PNC Arts Alive program adds greatly to the region’s ongoing commitment to expand our rich cultural heritage to reach new audiences and nurture emerging talent in our community,” said Rena Blades, CEO of the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County, where the official announcement of the grants was made Thursday night.
Grant recipients and their projects include:
Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens: Art and Healthy Hearts in the Garden for Title I students in Palm Beach County. Students will have the opportunity to work with artists and display their works in the garden and learn about growing and eating healthy food.
Miami City Ballet: Ballet for Young People, a free performance series for underserved students to experience two live ballet performances at the Broward Center and the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts.
Milagro Center: Free pop-up performances throughout the county in children from the center will create the sets and perform. This custom mobile theatre will travel to underserved areas, and stage 11 performances.
Mounts Botanical Center: “Washed Ashore, Art to Save the Sea,” an exhibit of live sea creatures created out of marine debris collected from local beaches.
Sponsorship recipients and their projects include:
Kravis Center: The High School Music Theatre Awards will host a new arts program for all high school students in Palm Beach County.
Norton Museum of Art: A Black Arts Festival will be held Feb. 24 at the Museum featuring local black artists, children activities and entertainment.
Palm Beach Symphony: The orchestra will expose 4,000 students to classical music to foster an appreciation for arts and culture. Four free performances with a full orchestra (59 musicians) will be paired with classroom discussions.
Digital Vibes: KidsFit Jam-a-thon & Wellness Workshops, combatting childhood obesity by fostering a love of fitness and teaching children how to incorporate physical activity and healthy behaviors into their everyday lives. The workshops will be offered to children ages 5-12 at 16 out-of-school programs and summer camps in high-need communities in Palm Beach County. Students will participate in a KidsFit Jam-a-thon at the South Florida Fairgrounds on July 26.
For more information, visit pncartsalive.com.
Free tickets to ‘Tesla’ opening night available
MIAMI BEACH — SoBe Arts, a nonprofit arts education organization located in Miami Beach, is offering free post-Hurricane Irma tickets to the world premiere of Tesla, an opera by SoBe Arts founder Carson Kievman that tells the story of the pioneering Serbian-American electrical inventor Nikola Tesla.
As a gesture of goodwill in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, SoBe Arts will offer one complimentary ticket to the first 200 people who email firstname.lastname@example.org by the end of Friday (today) to the opening night of the opera Thursday, Sept. 28, at the Colony Theatre on Lincoln Road.
“This is an opportunity for the community to take its mind off the last few weeks of hardship and come together with imagination,” says Gabriella Gonzalez, spokeswoman for SoBe Arts.
The opera, with music by Kievman and a libretto by the late Thomas Babe, highlights Tesla’s ideas, which challenged staid society, inherited wealth, and the power structure of the Gilded Age. Tesla brings to life the scientist’s race with Thomas Edison to fuel a new era of electricity, and the portentous aftermath: from the peak of worldly renown, Tesla’s pursuit of relentless dreams to tap natural forces to liberate mankind led instead to his demise in poverty.
Over a century ago Tesla realized that his prophetic work, which has framed worlds portrayed in science fiction and also formed the foundation for modern-day wireless energy transfer, wireless communications, laser beams, neon and fluorescent lighting, radio transmission, remote control, X-rays, lasers, robotics and much more, would require the burning of fossil fuel which would ultimately destroy our planet.
Tesla’s life story will be told with music, digital projections, and poetic storytelling. The production features nine principal vocalists, a six member choral ensemble, and a 25-piece chamber orchestra.
Kenneth Mattice returns to SoBe Arts in the lead role of Nikola Tesla; Emily Solo plays Tommie (aka Huckleberry); Kyle Albertson is J.P. Morgan; Timothy Stoddard, is George Westinghouse; Trevor Martin plays Mark Twain; Anastasia Malliaras is Marie Astor Hampton; Chris Vettel plays Thomas Alva Edison; Courtney Miller is Mina Miller Edison; and Ben Werley portrays mathematician Charles Proteus Steinmetz.
Opening night is at 8 p.m. Thursday, with additional performances on Sept. 29, 30 and Oct.1 at the Colony Theatre in Miami Beach. Ticket availability will be announced soon. Visit sobearts.org. To receive a complimentary ticket to the opening night of Tesla, email email@example.com by the end of the day Friday, Sept. 22.
PB Pops foundation awards $23K in scholarships
LAKE WORTH —The Palm Beach Pops and its Legacy Foundation of Palm Beach County recently held auditions at the Lake Worth Playhouse for students seeking scholarships to continue their music education.
The Legacy Foundation of Palm Beach County is a recently launched extension of The Palm Beach Pops’ existing outreach programs, which have taught nearly 100,000 music students in the county.
Its Maestro Bob Lappin Legacy Grant (named after the orchestra’s founder, who died in 2013) is awarded to an individual between 21 and 35 years old who shows exceptional proficiency in piano or a significant interest in conducting.
Ten applicants aged 10 to 16 performed in front of a review committee of business and cultural leaders with hopes of securing much-needed scholarship funds for instruments, lessons, music school tuition or other performing needs. A total of $23,000 in scholarships was awarded to these aspiring artists.
“Music truly is an important art form and method of expression,” Legacy Foundation of Palm Beach County President Jon Lappin said in a statement. “We are grateful to have the opportunity to positively impact the lives of local youth and help them continue to develop their talents.”
Applicants from several Palm Beach County area schools participated, including North Grade Elementary, Sacred Heart School, Palm Springs Middle School, Dreyfoos School of the Arts in West Palm Beach, as well as some homeschooled students.
Auditioners and scholarship winners were:
• Aiden Ketcham, 10, flute, Lake Worth
• Audrey Whitaker, 10, violin, Jupiter
• Riley Tress, 11, violin, West Palm Beach
• Daniel Rodriguez, 12, cello, West Palm Beach
• Raul Ocasio-Samo, 13, violin, Wellington
• Shila Ramirez, 13, violin, West Palm Beach
• Annabel Schreiber, 14, violin, Lake Worth
• Valeska Stojsic, 14, viola, Palm Beach Gardens
• Mary Jane Whitaker, 14, cello, Jupiter
• Clement Whitaker, 16, bass, Jupiter
Delray pub hosts Florida Keys benefit concert
DELRAY BEACH — Tim Finnegan’s Irish Pub will host a special benefit concert for the Florida Keys on Thursday from 6-10 p.m. with a night of comedy and live music from The Joe Cotton Band.
The traditional bar/restaurant, located at 2885 S. Federal Highway, is known for its Celtic music and authentic Irish fare prepared from family recipes.
“Hurricane Irma devastated the Keys, leaving tens of thousands of people without shelter, wood, fuel, food or even basic toiletries,” says owner Lisa Walsh.
Walsh has joined with a group of concerned friends and customers to organize the benefit concert. Paul Castronovo, host of The Paul Castronovo Show on BIG 105.9, will emcee the program.
For a $20 donation, attendees will receive one free well drink (or domestic beer or wine), discounted food, including a dessert bar from some of South Florida’s top restaurants and caterers.
Walsh has created a GoFundMe page to raise funds and says 100 percent of all proceeds collected from the event will go directly to support the Florida Keys victims of Hurricane Irma. Visit GoFundMe.com/florida-keys-hurricane-relief-fund.