This year, you helped The Arts Council evolve to better serve our diverse creative community. Today, we want to celebrate just three of these smart connections in our newest programs.
Nadia “Navi” Gaskins is a sophomore at Cooperative Arts & Humanities High School (Co-Op) whose first love is creative writing. Navi was part of a cohort of students that took part in the pilot semester of our Youth Arts Journalism Initiative (YAJI) a free arts education program for our region’s teens. YAJI’s partners included New Haven Independent, WNPR, Gateway Community College, Yale Repertory Theatre, Yale University Art Gallery, ConnCAT, Baobab Tree Studios, and Sofar Sounds New Haven. The Arts Paper is the longest running Arts Council program that started in 1980 and now publishes online daily.
Toto Kisaku is an award-winning Congolese playwright, activist, actor, director, and producer. Toto enabled his play Requiem for an Electric Chairto receive funding through our Fiscal Sponsorship program. It world premiered at the International Festival of Arts & Ideas in 2018 and was based on Toto’s true-story about being detained by the Congolese government for 7 days while waiting for his own execution in a dark cell.
Toto is interviewed by Requiem for an Electric Chair's producer and co-director, Hanifa Nayo Washington.
Martha Willette Lewis s a visual artist, curator, educator, and radio presenter whose artwork is directly affected by our current administration leading her to attend Create the Vote CT’s first ever statewide public gubernatorial candidate forum about arts, culture, and the future of Connecticut’s economy.