Two big announcements this morning:
Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA) - launched with an extraordinary $10 million gift from the late Leonore Annenberg and the Annenberg Foundation, this festival will take place April 7 through May 1, 2011. It will involve innovative collaborations among scores of Philadelphia's arts organizations and artists, as well as international artists and arts organizations. The theme will be "Paris 1910-1920," drawing parallels between the artistic ferment that took place in the early 20th Century in Paris, and the artistic energy that is now flowing in Philadelphia. The programming principles will be: Collaboration, Creativity and Innovation. Programming details to be announced in early April, but there were some "teasers" - a first-ever collaboration between the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Pennsylvania Ballet, the Roots in performance with "a French chanteusse," and circus artists performing in the grand airy space of the Kimmel Center, as well as outside. To demonstrate the sort of "mash-ups" that will be encouraged, there was a performance by members of the Philadelphia Orchestra, accompanied by two prominent local DJs.
How Philly Moves - is a major new 50,000 sf mural project announced today at City Hall. This project - which will cover a roughly half-mile stretch of parking garage at the Philadelphia Airport - is an initiative of the Mural Arts Program and the artist is photographer JJ Tiziou. Tiziou is photographing a wide array of dancers in Philadelphia in action, and these photographs will then form the basis of the mural, which will be executed by 35 artists and individuals in Mural Arts' workforce and re-entry programs. Kudos to Rina Cutler, Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities for initiating this project and supporting it, and thanks as well to the Airport and the Parking Authority, as well as the other sponsors Bank of America and US Airways. Of course, congrats to the Mural Arts staff and Jane Golden, who seem to never sleep they have so much going on!