Tag Archives: Arts and Business Council of Greater Phoenix

Art is everybody’s business

"The Dream Boat" featured on the Schuff-Perini Climber at the Children's Museum of Phoenix

American consumers rarely want for more choices. Just ask the new parents whose heads spin when they try to tackle the baby food aisle, or the teenager who walks into a quaint little record or book shop and tries to decide how to spend a gift card.

We forget too often that the way we shop, the businesses we choose to support, are a reflection of our values. For arts supporters, it makes sense to support businesses that support the arts.

Mesa Arts Center, recently honored by the Arts and Business Council of Greater Phoenix

I never open a Playbill without noting the corporate and business sponsors of the event I am enjoying–because I want to know which Arizona companies, large and small, are investing in the arts and culture of our local communities.

Check out these award recipients, selected from among 42 nominations throughout Maricopa County, honored earlier this week at the Business in the Arts Awards Breakfast organized by the Arts & Business Council of Greater Phoenix and presented by Wells Fargo:

Large Business Partner of the Year: Schuff Steel Southwest for donating labor. materials and expertise to creating and installing a three-story climber at the Children’s Museum of Phoenix.

Small Business Partner of the Year: DMB, Inc. of Scottsdale for providing various types of support to the West Valley Arts Council and making arts/culture a focus of their Verado development.

Arts Organization of the Year: Mesa Arts Center for launching four major initiatives, along with two partners, for expanding the reach of arts and culture within its community.

Arts Advocate of the Year: Bobb Cooper of Valley Youth Theatre in Phoenix for programs supporting underserved children and integrating youth theater into the community.

Arts Board Member of the Year: Harold Dorenbecher, chair of the Ballet Arizona board of directors, for longtime involvement that has helped the organization secure quality leadership and funding.

A Special Business Volunteer Award went to Mike Nolan for “donating more than 75 hours to four different arts organizations during the past year.” Nolan’s volunteering–focused on marketing, development and volunteer programs–benefited Phoenix Theatre (which opens its 90th season on Aug 25), Four Seasons Orchestra (of Scottsdale), Red Rocks Music Festival (Sept 1-5 in Sedona) and String Sounds (of Phoenix).

Next time you attend a music, dance or theater performance where business sponsors are recognized on stage or simply by name, put your hands together. Without their financial support of the arts, all that clapping we offer after the show might never come to pass.



There’s an award for that!

A week ago Monday, protestors took to the Arizona state capitol to protest immigration-related legislation—but the governor wasn’t there to witness the gathering.

David and Sonja Faeroy Saar (center) attend 2010 Governor's Arts Awards

She was already scheduled to appear at the 28th annual Governor’s Arts Awards, held at the Orpheum Theatre in downtown Phoenix—an event presented by Arizona Citizens for the Arts, the Arizona Commission on the Arts and the Office of the Governor.

I spoke with a Valley artist attending the event that evening, who felt it a bit odd to be celebrating Arizona arts with the governor at a time when so many sectors of our community—including education, health care and the arts—feel ravaged by state budget cuts.

Still, it’s important to recognize the achievements of Valley artists and arts supporters. Now, more than ever, their work matters. I was especially proud that my 16-year old daughter Lizabeth was there, performing with Greasepaint Youtheatre.

She had strict orders to bring me a program and note names of the 2010 winners so I could pass the info along to you.

Dean Osborne performs at the Grand Canyon Music Festival

Here’s the happy news:

• Composer James DeMars of Tempe, a three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee, received the Artist Award

• Preservationist Elisabeth Ruffner of Prescott, received the Individual Award

• Arts advocate Shirley Chann of Tucson, received the Shelley Arts Advocate Award

• The Grand Canyon Music Festival received the Education Award

Bank of America received the Business Award

The Drawing Studio in Tucson received the Community Award

Art for Kids Project at Webb Center

If you know of a deserving volunteer, artist, advocate, arts organization or business, there are plenty of other awards out there. Consider nominating/voting for the artists and arts lovers in your life if they’re eligible for the following…

• Arizona Central’s “Best” Poll. Vote on nominees online before tomorrow’s (April 28) deadline. Categories include art gallery, annual arts festival/event, regional arts center, theater company, live theater venue, museum, musical festival/event and more.

AriZoni Theatre Awards of Excellence. Nominations for two awards are being accepted through August 15, 2010. The “Outstanding Contribution Award” honors someone within the theater community and the “Distinguished Service Award” honors an individual, corporation or organization outside the theater community.

• Business in the Arts Awards. Nominations now being accepted for awards to be presented at the August 18, 2010 “New Artitude” event presented by Wells Fargo. Categories include large business partner, mid-size business partner, small business partner, arts organization, arts advocate, arts board member and special business volunteer.

Detour Company Theatre

Two other nifty bits of news in the arts award department…

Arizona Theatre Company’s own Latino Playwriting Award-Winner, “The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity” by Kristoffer Diaz, was honored as a finalist for the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. (The Pulitzer was awarded to “Next to Normal” by Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey—which will tour, beginning in November, with stops in Los Angeles and San Diego).

• Eight’s Third Annual Be More Awards™ will be announced at a May 20, 2010 luncheon and awards ceremony at Eight’s downtown Phoenix studios. Nominated arts organizations include the Del E. Webb Center for the Performing Arts, Rosie’s House and Valley Youth Theatre (for the “Be More Creative” award recognizing achievement in arts and culture) and Detour Company Theatre (for the “Be More Encouraged” judges’ choice award).

Rosie's House Music Academy

As always, I welcome your input if there are additional resources not included here. Please let me know of other award opportunities in the comment section below so our readers will have even more ways to recognize the artists, advocates and other arts leaders in our communities. There’s only one rule around here: Be nice.


NEW FEATURE! Watch for “Today’s Tidbits” at the end of Monday-Thursday posts so you’ll know of arts experiences you can enjoy during the week with your family or friends. Look for weekend arts events in Friday “Stage Mom” posts. More arts and other family-friendly activities are available every day at Raising Arizona Kids’ online calendar thanks to our amazing calendar editor Mala Blomquist.

Today’s Tidbits: ASU Theatre and Film presents their “5th Annual Student Film Fest” featuring both showcase and competitive formats at 7:30pm at Harkins Valley Art Theatre in Tempe (info at 480-965-6447 or www.theatrefilm.asu.edu) • Chandler-Gilbert Community College presents a free CGCC Community Choir and Orchestra Concert at 7pm (info at 480-732-7343) • Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe presents local author Tom Leveen with his debut teen novel “Party” at 7pm (info at www.changinghands.com) • Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts presents “Talk Cinema: Sneak Preview #7” featuring a film that “depicts the aspirations of all immigrants and the fulfillment of the American dream” followed by a moderated conversation with experts (tickets are $20; info at www.scottsdaleperformingarts.org). If you have a visual or performing arts event to share, please drop me a line at rakstagemom@gmail.com. Calendar items can be submitted online.