Artists and cultural leaders set to raise their voices for the arts

Arts Matter Day to be held Friday, Oct. 24; voters to share stories with candidates about why arts matter in Massachusetts

October 17, 2014—MASSCreative announced today that members of the arts, cultural, and creative community will share stories with gubernatorial and state legislative candidates to show them that Arts Matter in Massachusetts.

On Friday, Oct. 24, thousands of artists, cultural leaders, and supporters of the arts will email candidates, share videos, and post to Facebook and Twitter with the hashtags #ArtsMatter, #MaGov14, and #mapoli to share stories of the impact art has in Massachusetts.

Hundreds of arts and culture organizations from around the state are expected to participate. More than 30 leaders including Museum of Fine Arts Ann and Graham Gund Director Malcolm Rogers; University of Massachusetts Dartmouth College of Visual and Performing Arts Dean Adrian Tió; New Bedford Symphony Orchestra Education Director Terry Wolkowicz; Celebrity Series of Boston Executive Director Gary Dunning; StageSource Executive Director Julie Hennrikus; and Pittsfield Mayor Dan Bianchi have recorded Arts Matter videos. Somerville Mayor Joe Curtatone and Cambridge Mayor David Maher will release their Arts Matter videos on Arts Matter Day, Oct. 24. 

Arts Matter activities will happen across the state, among them:

Boston: MASSCreative is partnering with Jeff Grantz from Materials & Methods for Illuminus Boston on Oct. 25. This will be a free nighttime festival featuring large-scale projections and light installations, music, performances, and multimedia experiences. Arts Matter will have its own projection area at the event that will take over several blocks in the SoWa area of the South End.

Boston: ZUMIX will help celebrate Arts Matter Day when they perform at the Institute of Contemporary Art's Teen Night at 6pm on Oct. 24. MASSCreative will work with the ICA to capture the joy of the night, and spread the Arts Matter message.

Cambridge: Central Square Theater is incorporating Arts Matter into its Oct. 24 performance of A Disappearing Number. 

Easton: The Easton Cultural Council will run a video sequence on Easton Community Access Television about why Arts Matter.

Hingham: South Shore Conservatory of Music (SSC) President Kathy Czerny is celebrating the week leading up to Arts Matter Day by reaching out to over 1,000 students at the SSC. On Fri.,  Oct. 24, the SSC will hold performances and workshops in celebration of Arts Matter Day, which will be shared through video recordings on social media.

Holyoke:Under the auspices of the Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative and Berkshire Creative,  film, video and media professionals will interact with local businesses, depicting the value of incorporating quality film and video in their marketing efforts.  They will be celebrating Arts Matter Day by encouraging attendees to share why the arts matter to them and record their responses.   

Lawrence: Essex Art Center will mark Arts Matter Day by engaging kids from the community in hands-on art projects and creating a video recording of their participation along with stories about why the arts matter to them.

Salem: Deborah Greel, City Art Planner for the City of Salem; Kylie Sullivan, Manager of Salem Main Streets; and John Andrews of Creative Salem are collecting Arts Matter stories from Salem residents with an Arts Matter booth at the last Farmer's Market of the season on Thursday, Oct. 23. They will share their videos and photos on Arts Matter Day, Oct. 24.

Watertown: Bridget O'Leary of New Repertory Theatre will celebrate Arts Matter Day with a curtain speech before one of the final shows of Assassins. 

Worcester: Music Worcester will incorporate Arts Matter Day into its opening night, by making a speech and inviting attendees to share their Arts Matter Story on social media.  Arts Matter photos will also be taken in the lobby.

Springfield: The Springfield Symphony will include a speech about why Arts Matter before their Saturday, Oct. 25 production of “Kings, Angels & Lovers,” with Caroline Goulding.

“Gubernatorial and state legislative candidates are discussing how to best strengthen our economy, improve our schools, and make communities healthier and safer. Arts matter in Massachusetts and they should be part of this discussion,” said Matt Wilson, Executive Director of MASSCreative. “It’s important to share our stories so candidates understand that art isn’t just nice, but is also necessary to building strong communities in Massachusetts.”

MASSCreative is also reaching candidates through the Create the Vote Coalition—a collaboration of Massachusetts arts, cultural, and creative institutions convened by MASSCreative. The Coalition is collecting questionnaires from candidates for state representative and state senator. During the primary gubernatorial campaign, representatives from 50 arts and cultural organizations from around the state met with four of the candidates for governor to discuss arts and culture: Don Berwick, Evan Falchuk, Steve Grossman, and Jeff McCormick.

On July 15, the Coalition hosted the historic Gubernatorial Forum on Arts, Culture, and Creativity, the first-ever gubernatorial debate about arts and culture. The Forum was held at The Hanover Theatre in Worcester and attended by 500 artists, cultural leaders, and members of the public.  Candidates Don Berwick, Attorney General Martha Coakley, Evan Falchuk, Mark Fisher, Treasurer Steve Grossman, and Jeff McCormick answered questions from moderator Joyce Kulhawik and arts leaders from around the state. A video of the Forum is available here.


Founded in 2012, MASSCreative works with creative leaders and entrepreneurs, working artists, arts educators, and arts and cultural supporters to empower creative organizations and the public with a powerful voice to advocate for the resources and support necessary to build vibrant and connected communities.

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