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¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! Awarded NEA Grant for Performance Program, Educational Outreach

¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! artists Las Cafeteras and Ballet Folklorico de Los Angeles with young fans in April.
¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! artists Las Cafeteras and Ballet Folklorico de Los Angeles with young fans in April. (David Bazemore photo)

¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! has received a grant of $20,000 from the National Endowment for the Arts to further its program of performances and educational outreach in 2015-16.

The grant coincides with Viva’s 10th season and will support free family concerts, school visits and community workshops for audiences throughout Santa Barbara County from Carpinteria to New Cuyama.

A collaboration between UCSB Arts & Lectures, The Marjorie Luke Theatre, Isla Vista School and the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Center, Viva presents residences with performing artists from the U.S. and Mexico representing important traditions and innovation. Free family concerts at Isla Vista School, Guadalupe City Hall and The Marjorie Luke Theatre engage attendees and provide opportunities for cultural sharing including free workshops, school visits, and meet-the-artist sessions. This past season ¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! presented five multi-day residences with bands and performing groups such as Mariachi Garibaldi de Jaime Cuellar, Contra-Tiempo Urban Latin Dance Theatre, Mariachi Flor de Toloache, M.A.K.U. SoundSystem and Las Cafeteras.

On hearing the news, Arts & Lectures Miller McCune Executive Director Celesta Billeci said, "We are both proud and humbled each time the National Endowment for the Arts recognizes the value of ¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! in our community. To be equal partners with terrific grassroots community organizations is an honor, and to have earned the imprimatur of excellence that comes with NEA support — well, we're thrilled.”

Board President for the Marjorie Luke Theatre, Dawn Ziemer, added, “The Marjorie Luke Theatre is very thankful to the NEA for their kind and generous grant towards our Viva el Arte family concert program. This gift will enable us and our partnership of UCSB Arts & Lectures, Isla Vista School and the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Center to continue to provide world-class Latin American music performances and music education outreach for free in the diverse Santa Barbara area. We truly value the NEA for recognition of this need in our community.”

Viva’s next season will be announced in August. For up-to-date information, look for Viva on Facebook.

About ¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara!

¡Viva el Arte de Santa Bárbara! is funded by the McCune Foundation, the UCSB Office of Educational Partnerships, the Santa Barbara County Arts Commission, the Wells Fargo Foundation, The Marjorie Luke Theatre’s Dreier Family Rent Subsidy Fund, the Stone Family Foundation, Roddick Foundation, William E. Weiss Foundation, Mary and Gary Becker, Patricia and Jim Selbert, and Eric Kronvall. The program is sponsored in part by the “Santa Barbara Independent,” the “Santa Maria SUN,” Radio Bronco, Univisión, KPFK, KCSB, the Sandman Inn, Best Western South Coast Inn and Ramada Limited. Additional support from the Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and California Arts Council, Community Arts Grant Program using funds provided by the City of Santa Barbara, in partnership with the Santa Barbara County Arts Commission. Co-presented by the Marjorie Luke Theatre, the Guadalupe Cultural Arts & Education Center, the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Center and UCSB Arts and Lectures, in collaboration with the Isla Vista School After School Grant.

— Cathy Oliverson is the manager for performing arts and education outreach for UCSB Arts & Lectures.

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