Friday, April 20 , 2018, 5:52 pm | Fair 60º

 
 
 
 

PCPA Theaterfest Receives $25,000 NEA Grant

The funds will go toward the production of West Side Story and outreach efforts for at-risk youths

PCPA Theaterfest has received national recognition as the recipient of a $25,000 National Endowment for the Arts award.

The grant, in addition to helping underwrite the production of West Side Story, will assist with outreach efforts among local at-risk youths, and particularly the ongoing gang problem in northern Santa Barbara County.

The National Endowment for the Arts is dedicated to bringing the arts to all Americans and is the largest national funder of the arts.

As West Side Story depicts tragic effects borne out of social divisions, ethnic and generational tensions, and gang violence, PCPA’s production will assist with violence prevention. After specific performances, post-show talkbacks will continue the discussion on the social issues explored in the play.

Artistic Director Mark Booher said the play retains its significance to our community and more particularly the issue of gangs and the recruitment of young men into these groups. They often lack some social connectedness, are unable to express themselves and feel the need to belong.

Booher said the theater can serve as a vehicle to explore and connect the community with these issues.

“The arts build bridges between people, and they are an avenue for personal expression and interpersonal connection,” he said. “The theater should be a gathering place for the community in which we come to know ourselves and our neighbors better. Theater is a place that cultivates empathy, imagination and insight.”

West Side Story will play in Santa Maria’s Marian Theatre July 9-25 and in the Solvang Festival Theater July 30-Aug. 22.

Click here for more information.

— Craig Shafer is the communications director for PCPA Theaterfest.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.


Maestro, Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover, Debit

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >