Like many non-profits in Pierce County, Tacoma Arts Live has been severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic – both financially and programmatically – but the organization has risen to the occasion.  Ever resourceful, the staff has developed some innovative ways to continue serving the community during these challenging times.

Tacoma Arts Live Goes Virtual

As President of the Board of Trustees for Tacoma Arts Live, I’m extremely proud of the work that the organization has done in support of its mission to energize community through live performance.  Tacoma Arts Live brings a wide range of programming to the historic Pantages Theater, Rialto Theater, Theater on the Square and Tacoma Armory – ranging from an Evening with Dan Rather to the Hip Hop Nutcracker.  Tacoma Arts Live also provides impactful educational programming to almost 50,000 students annually, both in the theaters and in the schools.

Because so much of Tacoma Arts Live’s work is done in person, the organization has been particularly impacted by COVID-19 and social distancing restrictions.  Tacoma Arts Live has responded to the pandemic by developing new and innovative ways to deliver services.  Just one example, our conservatory theater camps will be going virtual this summer, serving kids aged 10-18 starting July 6th.  Led by professional teaching artists, classes will be held on Zoom with peer collaboration and off-screen projects.

Over the course of the past 10 years, Tacoma Arts Live has produced a series of plays for the public school system focusing on civil rights issues and civic engagement.  With support from Tacoma Creates, we’ve been able to make three of these plays available for online viewing – Get on the Bus (about immigration), Ruby Bridges (about school desegregation) and Nihonjin Face (about Japanese internment).  Each of these shows is appropriate for all ages and well worth a look.

Live streaming shows

Tacoma Arts Live has also gotten creative about fund raising, moving our annual gala to a virtual platform this spring.  The virtual gala on May 29th wasn’t as much fun as an in person event, but it was surprisingly successful.  Sponsorships, fund-a-need donations and auction bidding generated approximately $175,000 for arts education.  If you missed the event but are still interested in supporting the important work that Tacoma Arts Live does for kids in Pierce County, please consider giving at this link.

The theaters probably won’t be open for performances until late this fall, but Tacoma Arts Live will continue delivering services in new and interesting ways until then.  Stay tuned.

Mark Pinto is a top-producing Realtor with Windermere Chambers Bay, specializing in residential real estate in Tacoma, Gig Harbor, University Place and Lakewood.

Mark Pinto: (253) 318-0923

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