Sunday, March 1, 2009

Performances for the Masses

On Friday, two friends and I went to The Kennedy Center to watch K'Naan, a Somali hop hop artist, perform on Millennium Stage. Millennium Stage is part of the Performing Arts for Everyone (P.A.F.E) initiative. Begun in 1997, P.A.F.E provides an opportunity to watch free one-hour performances at the Kennedy Center every night of the year. One friend said it was a perfect example of the public's interest being prioritized. I couldn't agree more!

As much as I love patronizing the arts, I certainly cannot afford to pay for shows frequently (yet). That's why Millennium Stage is such a fabulous idea! Any evening at 6pm, my friends and I can stroll down to The Kennedy Center and catch what is usually a great (and wide array) of performances. Friday's show was a packed house. If you can't make it in person and want to watch a performance, you can stream it from the Center's website.

James A Johnson, chairman of the national center for the performing arts, put it best: "The Kennedy Center belongs to the nation, and the productions staged here must be shared with every American."

Props to Mr. Johnson and others who conceived this idea. While at The Kennedy Center, be sure to bask in the beauty of such an amazing building.


Ethan said...

Great thing they provide. I wish more art/culture institutions would follow that lead.

Ida said...

I, too, love KC's Millennium Stage. I would, however, also like to see the Center collaborate with area schools and universities to bring in low-cost productions to the broader DC stage, while exposing young talents to the city's art elite and poor art-lovers alike...