In a city that is so much shaped by Black performing arts and artists, there is no physical space dedicated to them. That is not sustainable.
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Lauren Turner, executive director of the Andre Cailloux Center for Performing Arts and Cultural Justice, speaking to BizNewOrleans.com weekly blogger Keith Twitchell for the Sept. 8 blog of “Neighborhood Biz.”
Located in the former St. Rose of Lima Church on Bayou Road, the new performing arts center is planning a full grand opening in January. The opening will be followed by a multi-month festival from March through Juneteenth, to include the staging of three new plays by Black southern playwrights and the Black Film Festival of New Orleans. The church now houses a main stage that can seat 125 people, a second performance area and the Sanctuary Bar. The center will also feature a residency program, which will host six performing arts organizations when fully realized. Three will be legacy companies, including Opera Creole, Voices in the Dark Repertory Theater and the Seasons Center Dance Company.
“The most important thing for City Park over the next few years is to have authentic dialogue with the community. We want to know why you love the park. Why you use the park. We even want to hear from those who don’t visit the park. We are out to ensure that City Park is a ‘park for the people’ and we can’t do it without their input.”
Cara Lambright, CEO of New Orleans City Park
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