Chairman’s Corner podcast

A weekly podcast with National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Mary Anne Carter. This week, the chairman gives us a sneak peak at the new report The Art of Reopening. @NEAarts

Excerpt of transcript

Mary Anne Carter: That’s right, Jo, and another good neighbor is based in Saranac Lake, New York. The Adirondack Center for Writing serves a 6-million-acre region that includes a lot of people in very remote areas with large distances between one town and the next, and one of AWC’s tools for success and one that was highlighted in “The Road Forward” is partnerships with other organizations. Executive Director Nathalie Thill notes in the report, quote, “So we have strong relationships with not only arts organizations, but we’ve done programming to ski centers and in hardware stores and in bars and restaurants. All our presenting space is in other spaces, so when COVID hit, because we’re small, I feel like that factor served us really well,” end quote. Bringing literature outdoors, ACW did a project involving spray-painting poems on sidewalks using a type of paint that is visible only when it is wet. So when it rained, the words emerged from the concrete, adding surprise and magic to the project.

Jo Reed: That is so cool.

Mary Anne Carter: It is so cool. One of the key takeaways for Thill in this extraordinary time, is that audiences need changed as the pandemic continued over the months and that ACW needed to adjust to accommodate those shifts. “For the first two weeks,” she says, “they needed calm. After that, they needed distraction. You had to be really aware of the psyche of what people were going through.”

Music Credit: “Renewal” composed and performed by Doug Smith from the cd The Collection.

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