New York City-Based Arts, Cultural Organizations To Launch Coalition Supporting Immigrant Arts

Sunday, February 4, 2018

New York City-Based Arts, Cultural Organizations To Launch Coalition Supporting Immigrant Arts


A coalition of New York City-based cultural organizations will hold a kick-off breakfast on Tuesday, February 6 to unveil an agenda to support immigrant contributions to the arts in the United States of America. The Immigrant Arts Coalition aims to recognize the important and ongoing contribution of artists and arts organizations representing America's diverse cultural mosaic.

Members will present plans to serve as a united front for advocacy and audience development, and work to collaborate with continuous shared programs, including the second annual, multi-day Immigrant Arts Summit this summer. The event will feature brief performances celebrating the artistic diversity of programming in our city, including Yiddish Theatre star Daniel Greenwood, acclaimed Latin jazz pianist Carolina Calvache of Colombia, and PS 124's Theatre Club from Chinatown.

On Sunday, the Coalition also announced that Jason Robert Brown, a skilled composer, lyricist, conductor, arranger, orchestrator, director and performer, also will perform at the launch event. Hailed as "one of Broadway's smartest and most sophisticated songwriters," he is best known for his dazzling scores to several of the most renowned musicals of his generation, including "The Last Five Years", his debut song cycle "Songs for a New World", and the seminal "Parade", for which he won the 1999 Tony Award for Best Score.

"As a network of multi-disciplinary arts organizations and individual artists, we recognize that American culture was built upon the shoulders of immigrants, who fled adversity and injustice for a brighter future here in the United States," said Chair of the Immigrant Arts Coalition and Chief Executive Officer of the National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene (NYTF) Chris Massimine. "Their values and cultures will continue to be celebrated and make our country what it is today."

Leaders of the Coalition will announce an agenda focusing on key areas of the arts: Advocacy, Diversity Support, Collaboration, Empowerment Through the Arts, and Artistic Engagement.

The Coalition began forming in July 2017, when a group of arts and cultural organizations held their first arts summit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. The Coalition's Board of Directors includes: Chair Chris Massimine, National Yiddish TheatreFolksbiene; Vice Chair Ayse Eldek, stage and screen actor and director; President Marlena Fitzpatrick, social and music journalist, musician and nationally recognized arts, labor and social justice activist; Secretary Carrie Beehan, Artist at GOH Productions; Treasurer Giacinta Pace, actor, producer and journalist; and, Member at Large Laura Caparrotti, actor and Founding Artistic Director of the Kairos Italy Theater in New York and of In Scena! Italian Theater Festival in New York.

Other members and affiliates who have joined the Coalition are performing arts producers: Pan Asian Repertory; Repertorio Español; Irish Repertory Theatre; the Kairos Italy Theater; the Irish Arts Center; National Asian Artists Project; Dance/NYC; and the Turkish American Repertory Theatre; as well as such museums and cultural organizations as: El Museo del Bario; Museum at Eldridge Street; Israel's Office of Cultural Affairs in the USA; Museum of Jewish Heritage; Irish American Writers & Artists; and, the Cumbe Center for African and Diaspora Dance.

"Our vision is to impress a larger mandate for culture across New York, our country, and the world, one that is inclusive and based on mutual respect," Massimine said.

You can learn more about the organization at

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