Arlington, VA

This column is sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

Amid the many challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic poses for the arts and culture community, artists are taking the opportunity to strengthen capacity.

Toward that end, Arlington Arts is launching a new series of skill-building sessions: the Arts Enterprise Institute Fall Classes through our Arts Enterprise Institute, from October 27 through November 17 (all classes are virtual).

Dovetailing with our earlier partnership with the Washington Area Lawyers of the Arts (with workshops continuing through October 11), Arlington Arts now offers yet another opportunity for artists to learn and grow. Our Arts Enterprise Institute program exists to provide resources for artists and deepen their skill set to withstand the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Workshops, training, seminars and events integrate strong business skills, knowledge, life-long learning, and artistic development with peer-to-peer learning and engagement with the community. A cornerstone of these programs is artists teaching artists.

Mary Briggs is the instructor for: Crisis Management for Artists and Arts Organizations During COVID-19, Where to Find Funding for Individual Artists During COVID-19, and Where to Find Funding for Arts Organizations During COVID-19.

The co-founder and director of the You Are Here community arts non-profit in Jeanette, Pennsylvania and an adjunct lecturer at Goucher College, Towson, MD in the Masters in Cultural Sustainability program, Mary Briggs is also deeply knowledgeable about our community. From 1989 until 2011, Ms. Briggs served in a variety of positions on the staff of Arlington Cultural Affairs Division, ranging from Grants Manager to working with an array of Multi-Cultural organizations. She has been a presenter at numerous national and regional conferences and meetings including Americans for the Arts, Grantmakers in the Arts and American Folklore Society. Ms. Briggs also was an Arlington resident for several decades.

Caroline Weinroth is the instructor for: Tips Tricks and Hacks for Creating Better Virtual Experiences, and Social Media Strategies 1 and 2.

Caroline Weinroth is a musician, writer and artist. At George Mason University, she earned a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, with a concentration in Poetry, and a Bachelor of Arts in Theater & Audio Engineering. She is the lead singer, guitarist and songwriter for the rock band Cinema Hearts. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she has performed livestream concerts for Center for the Arts GMU, Central Rappahannock Regional Library, Alexandria Office of the Arts and others.

These virtual classes are offered at a special rate: $30 for the first class and up to all-five additional classes in the series for free! See below for details on each class and information on how to register!

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This column is sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

By guest blogger and artist Melanie Kehoss.

The Arlington Visual Art Studio Tour (AVAST) is a self-guided free tour of artists in their studios held throughout Arlington County in early autumn. In response to the pandemic, this popular event is going virtual with a mix of videos and Facebook Live events from Wednesday, September 23 through Sunday, September 27.

This is a non-juried showcase for local artists to feature their work, processes and studio spaces. For the last several years, it’s been a popular way for the community to experience the richness and diversity of visual arts to be found in Arlington County.

In 2020, our tour will go entirely online, with videos and Facebook Live events featuring artists in their studios. This format not only helps our artists and visitors feel safe and secure, it also provides an opportunity to “visit” far more studios than would be feasible in-person. Moreover, this virtual tour will showcase Arlington studios to art lovers around the country and the world! And yes… Much of the artwork you’ll see is available for purchase (see website for details)!

The 2020 Tour will begin on Wednesday, September 23 at 9 a.m., when 28 video studio visits premiere on You Tube. The interactive portion of the tour takes place on Saturday, September 26 at 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday, September 27 11 a.m.-4 p.m., when 12 more artists go live on Facebook.

Videos will also be available to watch after the event, but we encourage you to watch during the live sessions so you can comment and ask the artists questions! Look at the list of participating artists and the full schedule on the AVAST Website!

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

The ripple-effects of the COVID-19 pandemic has deeply impacted the region’s arts and culture community. But the creative community is often inspired by adversity to take the opportunity to grow. As such, Arlington Arts is proud to be part of a cross-jurisdictional partnership in support of a great capacity-building opportunity. .

Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts (WALA), in collaboration with three Northern Virginia Arts Agencies — Alexandria Office of the Arts, Torpedo Factory Arts Center, Arlington Arts and ArtsFairfax — will bring its popular six-part Creative Entrepreneurs Series of workshops to Northern Virginia Artists and Arts Organizations.

As part of our commitment to ensure that Arlington-based artists, performers and creatives have access to this opportunity, Arlington Arts has subsidized a limited number of tickets to each workshop that are available for FREE.

WALA’s Creative Entrepreneurs Series (CES) is a series for creatives of all kinds who want to take the next step in their professional career by creating their own business. Explore the basics of forming a business for your creative endeavors, from deciding whether to incorporate as a non-profit or for-profit entity, to understanding copyrights and trademarks, to contract and negotiation skills, and finally to taxes and understanding the grants process.

“This is an historic partnership with Northern Virginia’s three leading arts agencies,” says WALA Executive Director John C. Good. “Bringing these workshops to the Northern Virginia Arts Community — especially during these challenging times — will provide creatives with the business tools necessary to take their art to a broader audience, to protect their art from piracy, and maximize their money-making potential. It a boot-camp for arts entrepreneurs.”

The series comprises of six sessions to be held on *consecutive Tuesdays, starting Tuesday, September 15 and continuing through Tuesday, October 20 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Each interactive workshop is facilitated by an expert WALA volunteer, and includes livestream access, supporting materials and ample time for audience Q&A. The six sessions are as follows:

September 15 — Copyright/Trademark Protection & Use
September 22 — Contracts & Licensing
October 6 — Negotiation Strategies
October 13 — Tax Strategies
October 20 — Grants

The WALA Creative Entrepreneurs Series is free for WALA members and $20 per workshop for non-members. Reduced rate General Admission tickets available through September 8. Arlington Arts is offering a limited number of free tickets to each of these workshops, and they are going fast.

To avail yourself of the opportunity, Arlington-based artists may visit the Arlington Arts website and register through the calendar listing on the Arts Enterprise Institute webpage (the discount will be automatically applied).

#ARLINGTONARTS  #WALANOVA

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

Recognizing the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on arts and culture organizations throughout the region, the Greater Washington Community Foundation and The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation have joined with seven other funders to launch the $1 million Arts Forward Fund to support arts and culture organizations in the D.C. region as they make essential shifts needed to continue their work during the COVID-19 pandemic and respond to the nationwide movement for racial justice.

Arts Forward Fund will make grants ranging from $10,000 to $50,000 to support short-term capacity-building, training, and innovation.

Arts Forward Fund will prioritize organizations that serve Black, Indigenous and other communities of color, and organizations with limited access to philanthropic capital. It will also prioritize requests that address longstanding racial inequities in organizations, in the arts and culture field, and in the broader community.

Arts and culture organizations with annual revenue of less than $10 million in their most recently completed fiscal year are eligible to apply, provided they serve the District of Columbia, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties in Maryland, and Arlington and Fairfax counties and the cities of Alexandria, Falls Church and Fairfax in Virginia.

Informational webinars will take place on August 14 and 20, in advance of the deadline for application. The application deadline is August 27, and grant decisions will be made on or before September 21. More details and the call for applications are available here.

#ArtsForwardFund

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

The COVID-19 pandemic has required almost every industry to reassess, revamp and reset.

This is especially true of the performing arts, historically predicated on both an artistic and economic transaction between artist and audience. As Arlington Arts has been documenting, Arlington’s cultural community has responded quickly and energetically.

Arlington’s Synetic Theater presents a digital adaptation of Giovanni Boccaccio’s The Decameron, a collection of novellas written in Italy in response to The Black Plague of 1347-1351. For each day through July 20, short filmed vignettes were released in groups of three. All content will remain available to stream through the end of July. Watch at your own pace, with a range of affordable pay-what-you-can ticket options.

The Decameron is a collection of novellas that celebrates the human impulse to connect through storytelling in a time of despair and isolation. The book is structured as a collection of 100 tales told by a group of young people sheltering in a secluded villa just outside Florence to escape the epidemic. The tales the group tells each other in The Decameron range from life lessons and tongue-in-cheek commentary, to erotic and tragic love stories.

Have more questions? That’s understandable in this new paradigm, so Synetic has created a page of FAQ to guide you through this virtual theater experience. For tickets and information, visit the Synetic Theater website!

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

The COVID-19 pandemic has influenced a return to ‘The Basics’ and the simple pleasures of some ‘retro’ technologies.

Thanks to the old-school medium of radio, Arlington Arts is able to forge ahead with Lubber Run Live on WERA 96.7 FM –LIVE performances and discussions broadcast weekly with host Ken Avis (The Antidote), Saturdays at 5 p.m., July 11 through August 8 (live streaming on wera.fm ).

Lubber Run Amphitheater is a summertime tradition for Arlington residents. But during the pandemic, the shoulder-to-shoulder audiences that we’re accustomed to at this sylvan venue located just off of Route 50 in the Arlington Forrest neighborhood, just aren’t possible. Through the magic of radio, audiences can still enjoy a range of music, with no threat of ‘rain-outs’: Jazz and Go Go, Roots Rock, Soul and Blues are all part of the mix.

This partnership between Arlington Arts and WERA was a natural. Arlington’s only radio station, WERA’s mission is to enlighten, enrich and entertain Arlington’s diverse community by promoting and facilitating independent radio. A project of Arlington Independent Media, WERA’s programming is produced by and for the community.

The lineup for Lubber Run LIVE is brimming with a mixture of toe-tapping Amphitheater favorites, and a splash of new talent, including:

July 11: The Jogo Project

The JoGo Project is a fusion ensemble with Jazz and Go-Go at the core. Founded in 2014 by D.C. native Elijah Jamal Balbed, the band is dedicated to keeping Go-Go music alive while also exploring new sounds.

July 18: Nkula

Ethiopian-born “Ras Abel” Mekonnen’s band Nkula features a unique blend of foundational reggae with infusions of African influence (e.g. zouk and soukous riddims). Their high-energy groove exposes audiences to musical styles that broaden horizons.

July 25: Caz Gardiner

A 2019 Wammie (Washington DC Area Music Association) nominee for best Soul Artist/Group, Caz Gardiner is a high energy performer who writes songs of overcoming struggles and celebrating life with a Soul Rock and Reggae sound that is as diverse and driving as she is.

August 1: Justin Jones

A native Virginian, Jones started playing open mic nights in Charlottesville in his early teens, and has appeared at the Virgin Mobile Festival and the Floyd Festival. At the 2012 Austin City Limits Music Festival (ACL), Speakers in Code named his one of the Event’s top-ten performances, and Bob Boilen of NPR’s All Songs Considered lists Justin Jones “as one of the top performances of the year.”

August 8: Lauren Calve

Washington, D.C. area singer-songwriter, guitar and lap steel player Lauren Calve has brought a vital new energy to the Americana scene. On her latest EP, Wildfire, Calve delves into complex issues ranging from the increased polarization and divisiveness prevalent in the U.S. and around the world, corporate greed and their role in both the climate crisis and gun violence, women’s’ stories that are dominating public consciousness, and even the precarity of online dating.

So tune-in for Lubber Run LIVE on WERA 96.7. Bookmark their website to listen to the live-stream. Create your own Live Listening Experience when you fire up the car radio or pull the speakers onto the porch! Listeners are encouraged to recreate their own Lubber Run picnic experience and order take-out and beverages from local restaurants.

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

Over these last challenging months, Arlington Arts has been harnessing our community’s arts resources under the Arlington Arts at Home web page.

We also want to share how Arlington’s arts organizations are reaching out to all residents during the pandemic. One example is Arlington Arts Center’s partnership with the non-profit Bridges to Independence to bring creative options to the door-step of children in-need.

In their own words from their website, rather than allowing COVID-19 to stop their outreach work, here’s how Arlington Arts Center drew even closer to the community:

As the COVID-19 crisis has unfolded, Arlington Arts Center has continued doing what we do best: providing high-quality opportunities to explore, create, and be inspired by contemporary art and artists. A diverse array of online projects, classes, workshops, and virtual artist interviews, many offered at no charge, are currently available on our website.

Our goal is to provide thoughtful, engaging, and enlightening experiences that add value to our individual lives, and our collective existence.

Beyond the virtual realm, AAC has continued its partnership with Bridges to Independence, an organization that leads individuals and families out of homelessness and into stable, independent futures.

Prior to the lockdown, AAC was providing regular “Art Club” meetings for children in residence at Bridges to Independence. When that effort was derailed by COVID-19, AAC began delivering project kits complete with art supplies to keep the kids creatively engaged.

“During these uncertain times, Bridges to Independence’s youth have been able to depend on Arlington Arts Center. Our youth in shelter have been weighed down this year, and Arlington Arts Center has given them a creative outlet to shine through. This amazing group has provided bi-weekly interactive, fun art activities for all our youth in shelter. They understand that our families do not have basic art supplies and provide a new set each time. We are so thankful to have them as community partners!” — Alexandra Gavin, Youth Development Manager, Bridges to Independence.

Along with many other Arlington arts organizations, Arlington Arts Center also continues to offer a broad range of virtual activities.

For more information on arts offerings from Arlington’s arts organizations — everything from art-making projects to self-guided tours of our internationally acclaimed Public Art Collection — visit the Arlington Arts at Home webpage.

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

With a centuries-long tradition of bringing people together in groups large and small, the impact on the Arts has been seismic.

Arlington Arts continues to pro-actively look out for resources to assist arts organizations, arts administrators and individual artists impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Here is just a sample of resources available to performers and artists of all disciplines who have been impacted by the pandemic.

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and Arts Funding: Update and Action items from Grantmakers in the Arts.

  • Field-wide responses & calls to action
  • Racial equality & justice response
  • Webinars, articles & resources
  • Information hubs
  • Rapid Response & Emergency Funds

Coronavirus Resources for Artists, Creative Workers & Organizations from Springboard for the Arts, an economic and community development organization for artists and by artists.

Workforce Relief, Charitable Giving Incentives, and NEA Funding Included in Third COVID-19 Relief Package.

  • The Association of Performing Arts Professionals and League of American Orchestras have sourced key points and are providing an in-depth analysis of the relief package

Resources for COVID-19 Crisis from Embracing Arlington Arts.

For a full list of resources, visit and bookmark our web page. Updates will be provided as new resources become available.

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

The COVID-19 pandemic has all of us adapting to new ways of spending our free time. Arlington’s artistic community has stepped up to the plate to offer a broad range of activities to help you manage the stresses of social distancing.

Arlington Arts has showcased many of these on our ARLINGTON ARTS AT HOME webpage. Some are free, others offer you a way to support a local small-business while engaging in healthy and positive activities at-home! Here’s a small sampling:

Bowen McCauley Dance 

Arlington dancer Lucy Bowen-McCauley developed a unique stretching technique that was officially adopted by U.S. Olympians such as Dominique Dawes. You can avail yourself of her expertise in virtual stretch classes on Mondays and Saturdays. The Company also is offering a range of movement classes for those with Parkinson’s Disease on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. For details, email: [email protected] or visit www.bmdc.org

Encore Stage & Studio 

From stretching and storytelling, to structured classes in theater and dance, Encore has a wide range of Zoom-based offerings for everyone from toddlers to teens. (Some Free. Some Fees Apply). More Info.

Jane Franklin Dance

Keep it moving with free online dance classes occurring daily. Learn different approaches to movement from different instructors each day in genres ranging from ballet and jazz, to clogging and improv. Classes are live-streamed and are not recorded. More Info.

Signature Theatre

Stay connected to your favorite Signature performers every week with Signature Strong — Live! Join the weekly Facebook Live conversation with Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer and celebrated guests as they chat about musicals, sing a few songs, answer your questions and more. Tuesdays at 8 p.m. More Info.

Synetic Theater

From fitness classes by their award-winning movement-based performers, to storytelling for children, the award-winning Synetic Theater has much to offer that you can now enjoy right at home. This includes live-streaming of past shows, such as Sleeping Beauty (thru May 25) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (extended thru May 10). More Info.

In addition to programs by the above organizations, Arlington Arts also has assembled a range of art activities you can partake of drawing upon past programs.

Everything from art-making projects to self-guided tours of our internationally acclaimed Public Art Collection. For more info, visit the Arlington Arts at Home webpage.

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

(Updated 04/13/2020) Utilizing existing resources and equipment from another program, for the last week Arlington Arts has been sewing masks to be distributed through Arlington County Department of Human Services and the Arlington County Police.

The basic, non-medical grade cloth masks resulting from this effort are being supplied to high-risk populations ranging from homeless shelters and the County jail.

The initiative was conceived and coordinated by the Director of Arts Enterprise, Joan M. Lynch. A professional costumer who formerly ran the Arlington CostumeLab, Joan has many stage and film credits to her name. Working at a safe distance from one another, she and sewing partners Andrea Blackmon and Sharon McDaniel of Arlington Weaves, and Tessa Luque of the Washington Opera started turning out about 50 masks per day. In the week since first posted to social media, the program now has over 100 volunteers.

More volunteers are welcome, and they will be supplied with instructions, fabric, elastic and thread for pick-up, and arrange to drop them off for weekly distribution.

Interested volunteers or those with elastic or fabric to donate toward the effort may email: [email protected].

Arlington Arts is grateful for the outpouring of support from the Community. While there is currently an abundance of volunteers, we still welcome donations of elastic or all-cotton fabric.

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This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts/Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

Arlington Arts takes pride in providing support and services for the many Arlington-based artists and ensembles that enrich our community.

However, responding to the COVID-19 pandemic requires that we take measures for the safety of our community and staff. As such, Arlington Arts has closed all of our County-run arts facilities to the public until April 6. Productions and rehearsals in joint use theatre’s (such as Gunston Arts Center Theatre’s One and Two, and Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre) are cancelled through Monday, April 13.

Here is a list of facility closures and cancellations among Arlington Arts grantees that are known at the time of publication:

THEATRE ON THE RUN / 3700
Cancellations:

Arts Enterprise Institute Workshops

GUNSTON ARTS CENTER — THEATRE ONE
Cancellations:

GUNSTON ARTS CENTER — THEATRE TWO
Cancellations:

Avant Bard Theatre — Ada and the Engine and Suddenly Last Summer (all performances)

  • LEE ARTS CENTER — the studios and gallery are closed thru April 6
  • SIGNATURE THEATRE — canceling ALL performances and public events thru March 30
  • FESTIVAL ARGENTINO — Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre
    — Originally scheduled for May 16, it has been postponed until Fall, 2020 (date TBA)

In addition, Arlington Arts offers a range of services in support of presentations by Arlington-based arts organizations. For the safety of both the Artists and Staff, the following services and activities are suspended through April 6:

Arlington Arts will be here for the community as things return to normal. Meanwhile, we urge you to be safe.

The County has a new COVID-19 Related Cancellations page, where we are listing all Cultural Affairs cancellations.

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