Left of Center: Is Charlottesville Media Doomed?

News media across the country are collapsing. After recent staff cuts, furloughs and the shutdown of local printing for the Daily Progress, will Media General be doing more downsizing? Can we support four TV stations? Two weeklies? Will blogs replace all of them? What about the partnership between the non-profit Charlottesville Tomorrow and the Daily Progress, being watched nationally as a possible future model for local news?

That topic was the subject of a Left of Center forum jointly sponsored with cvillenews.com. The event is moderated by site founder Waldo Jaquith.

University of Virginia media studies professor Bruce Williams began with a historical overview of how changing “media regimes” in the U.S. have impacted political communication and civil society, and how the recent ‘broadcast era’ may have been an anomaly in the larger sweep of American history.

Then the event continues with a panel discussion with Charlottesville Tomorrow’s Sean Tubbs, Daily Progress assistant city editor Josh Barney, and Hook editor Hawes Spencer, with moderator Waldo Jaquith, editor of cvillenews.com and Left of Center steering committee member.

PCA Community Conversation: Dos & Don’ts for Collaborative Arts Education Projects & Partnerships

On October 26, 2009, the Piedmont Council of the Arts held the latest in a series of Creative Conversations. The project is a chance to bring representatives from different arts organizations together in order to share ideas. This time around, the topic centered around the idea of developing partnerships across many different non-profit groups.

After a round of introductions, Greg Kelly of the Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative and Pete O’Shea of SiteWorks began discussing how they were able to forge the StoryLine project in collaboration with the Piedmont Council of the Arts, the Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Department, and the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Freedom of Expression. Afterwards, the panel and participants had a conversation about what worked, what didn’t, and what lessons can be learned to inspire similar collaborations in the future.

Piedmont Council of the Arts: Increasing Community-Wide Access to the Arts

The Piedmont Council of the Arts (PCA) continued its Creative Conversation Series on April 21, 2009 with a discussion between artists, art professionals and local officials about how expand the reach of the arts across all of Charlottesville’s many populations. The goal of the program is to bring artists, organizations, educators, and business and community leaders together to develop strategies for strengthening arts and cultural life in the Charlottesville area.

Previous conversations have dealt with Arts Education and Marketing the Arts in Charlottesville.

Participants in the forum included:

Bruce Boucher UVA Art Museum
Jane Fisher Charlottesville Community Design Center
Gary Funston Charlottesville Jazz Society
Harold Folley Virginia Organizing Project
Damani Harrison Music Resource Center
Holly Hatcher Charlottesville-Area Community Foundation
Rose Hill-Jones From Inside Out
Ronda Hewitt Live Arts Theater
Sibley Johns Music Resource Center
Bree Luck Light House Studio
Ken Moore Region Ten Consumer Advocate
Christine Nardi Center for Nonprofit Excellence
Emily Nelson UVA Art Student Society
Dave Norris Charlottesville City Council
Sherrika Nowell Urban Vision
Rydell Payne Abundant Life Ministries
Martin Phillips Charlottesville Jazz Society
Gloria Rockhold Albemarle Public Schools – Latino Relations
Joel Rubin UVA Department of Music
George Sampson UVA Arts Administration
Sherri Smith Artisans Center of Virginia
Mildred Spicer VSAarts Charlottesville-Albemarle
Jessica Thayer Artist Services
Karen Waters Quality Community Council
Annie Yoder Abundant Life Ministries

Piedmont Council of the Arts holds Creative Conversation on “Marketing Charlottesville as a Creative Community”

Maggie Guggenheimer (standing) leads the PCA's second Creative Conversation
Source: Piedmont Council of the Arts

Is Charlottesville doing enough to market itself as a regional destination for patrons of the arts? What else can be done to ensure that the visual, performing and literary arts not only survive, but thrive? Those are just a couple of the questions explored during the second Creative Conversation organized by the Piedmont Council of the Arts.

Representatives of various groups were invited to Charlottesville’s CitySpace meeting room on the Downtown Mall to discuss the topic “Marketing Charlottesville as a Creative Community.” The event was held on January 13, 2009 in the City Space Meeting Room at the Charlottesville Community Design Center. We’ve condensed the two hour discussion into a 45 minute podcast.

The participants were:

PCA Creative Conversation: Arts Education and Our Community

On September 30, 2008, the Piedmont Council of the Arts held the first in a series of Creative Conversations. The CitySpace meeting room on the Downtown Mall was packed with participants eager to discuss the future of arts education. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • How do people learn about and experience arts and culture today?
  • How does our community provide citizens with learning opportunities in the arts?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of our community in terms of arts education? Are there untapped opportunities or important concerns?
  • How, if at all, do arts education opportunities differ for young people and adults in our community? How do they differ according to economic ability? Geographic location? Racial or cultural background?
  • How collaborative is our community in educating through the arts? Are there ways to streamline efforts and work more closely together?

Wake-Up Call: Art and Life

On the August 3rd edition of the Sunday Morning Wake-Up Call on WNRN, Rick Moore discusses the artistic life with Beryl Solla, Chair of the Piedmont Virginia Community College Art Dept. and Gallery Curator; Laura Parsons, Arts Editor for The Hook, and Maggie Guggenheimer, Executive Director of the Piedmont Council of the Arts. In a wide-ranging conversation, these leaders in the local art scene explain how our lives and community are enriched by the arts, and why it is important to support local arts organizations.