Artistic Director's Post Curtain Plea for Supporting the Arts
The arts in America are in jeopardy. Join New York Theatre Ballet in speaking out! During her post performance curtain speech, Artistic Director Diana Byer made a statement regarding strong federal funding for the arts in America. Listen and read her full speech here.
E.B. White is widely known for many things including Elements of Style, Charlotte's Web, and Stuart Little. Nearly three quarters of a century ago, in 1942, he offered this bit of nonpartisan and prophetic wisdom which I think is still relevant in today's troubled times.
"The United States, almost alone today, offers the liberties and the privileges and the tools of freedom. In this land the citizens are still invited to write their plays and books, to paint their pictures, to meet for discussion, to dissent as well as to agree, to mount soap boxes in the public square, to enjoy education in all subjects without censorship, to hold court and judge one another, to compose music, to talk politics with their neighbors without wondering whether the secret police are listening, to exchange ideas as well as goods, to kid the government when it needs kidding, and to read real news of real events instead of phony news manufactured by a paid agent of the state. This is a fact and should give every person pause."
I invoke E.B. White tonight because it seems a good way to make a point about the importance of the arts in our country. Dance has often been given short shrift in the overall funding picture. But we couldn't live without the federal and state funding support we do get. Yet, as I speak, the National Endowment for the Arts and for the Humanities are in jeopardy of reduced funding if not elimination. It's my hope that you'll show your support for the arts in the coming months by speaking out in any way you can to support strong public funding for every art. -Diana Byer