Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Introducing... the new Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute

This is not the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center. Not anymore.
It's the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute!
Building photo credits: Joe Mabel
The new Institute -- LHPAI for short -- is now part of Seattle's Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs, and closely aligned to the office's mission "to keep artists living, working and growing in Seattle."
Credit: Andrew Ness Photography
I think the Institute is a lot like other major attractions: the locals know it's there, but until someone from outside the neighborhood looks at it with new eyes, the attraction is sometimes overlooked.
And for a while it may have been easy to overlook -- a two-year seismic and electrical renovation closed its landmark building to the public completely.
Performances and programs continued at other locations, but it's always more fun to see a performance inside the institute that created it.

Now the institute houses a contemporary ballet company-in-residence -- Inception Dance...
Credit: Andrew Ness Photography
... it hosts inclusive programs like the Out There Poetry Camp for gay teens...
... and most of all, African and diaspora-related performances year-round. Guess what you can sign up for this winter:
And that's not even including what's on tap for Black History Month. Go to the calendar and sign up -- classes start next week on January 11th!

FTC disclosure: I'm partnering with the LHPAI on a series I call "Thursdays with LHPAI," generally published on Thursdays. I am being paid an honorarium for my work. However, all opinions and views expressed in this series are my own.

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