St. Louis just can’t stay quiet. The region has produced legends who are on a first-name basis worldwide, like Ike & Tina, Miles, Chuck, and Nelly. It’s been home to the “Velvet Bulldozer” Albert King, the “Black Venus” Josephine Baker, and the original “king” of pop music, Scott Joplin. And don’t forget world-class songwriters like John Hartford, Jay Farrar, Jeff Tweedy, and Willie Mae Ford Smith. Few cities anywhere can claim so many leading lights in such a wide range of style.
St. Louis Sound examines contributions to American popular music. This exhibit serves as your introduction to that music—it can’t cover everything, but inside you’ll find familiar tunes, deeper cuts, and a new musical outlook on the city you love. So lend the city your ears.
Cynthia Prost, President and CEO of the Arts and Education Council of St. Louis, stopped by to speak with Nancy about the organization and its works.
The Arts and Education Council of Greater St. Louis is a unique asset in our community. The Arts and Education Council is our region's only united arts fund supported by private contributions from individuals, corporations, foundations and institutions committed to the value and benefit of the arts to our community.
The Arts and Education Council serves as the base - the root, if you will - through which funding, training and collaboration happens for nearly 100 arts organizations that enrich the cultural landscape of St. Louis each year.
Arts and Education Council grantees not only produce and present great art, they also maintain viable, impactful arts education and outreach programming for K-12 students throughout the bi-state area. Research continues to show that children who participate in the arts enjoy greater academic success, higher self-esteem, improved discipline, higher graduation rates and broad, creative thinking skills necessary for advancement in the world beyond school.
The Centene Center for the Arts, an arts incubator owned and operated by the Arts and Education Council
Cynthia Prost has over twenty years of nonprofit leadership experience and currently serves as President and CEO of the Arts and Education Council since 2008. In this role she oversees all institutional matters including fundraising and grant making. She received her bachelor of arts (magna cum laude) and a master of arts in management from Fontbonne University in St. Louis. Prost is an adjunct faculty member at Fontbonne University in the Nonprofit Management graduate program, teaching courses in fundraising, philanthropy, grant writing, strategic planning and board governance and management.
Carrie Houk, Executive Artistic Director of the Tennessee Williams Festival St. Louis, stopped by to talk with Nancy about the festival details for 2021, which runs August 19th through the 29th.
This year's theme for the festival is "The Moon and Beyond," and features an outdoor performance of "The Glass Menagerie," Williams’ greatest, most famous, and most personal play. The performance will be at the actual site that inspired the writing of the play, The Tennessee, at 4633 Westminster Place in St. Louis. Performances are August 19, 20, 21, 22, 26, 27, 28, 29 at 8:00PM. Other topics covered include panel discussions and a walking tour of sites in the Central West End associated with Tennessee Williams.
About Tennessee Williams: Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tennessee Williams’ renowned work reflects his two decades of coming of age in St. Louis, and his creations range from the famed classics, to adaptations for film and opera, to dozens of newly discovered plays and writings that have been continuously documented, performed and studied around the world. Considered by many to be America’s greatest playwright, Williams is best known for his award-winning powerful plays, “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” and “The Glass Menagerie.”
About Carrie Houk: Carrie Houk has spent her professional life as an actor, casting director, producer and teaching artist. Educated at HB Studio in NYC and the Conservatory of Theatre Arts at Webster University, she began her acting career at the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis and from there worked in NYC, LA and Chicago. She has cast over thirty films, numerous television shows and countless national commercials and has worked with directors Steven Soderbergh, Robert Altman, Alexander Payne, Howard Franklin, among others. She started her casting career in Chicago thirty five years ago and from there settled back in St. Louis to raise her daughter. She has produced two films and the critically acclaimed production of Tennessee Williams’s “Stairs to the Roof” directed by Fred Abrahamse. Adjunct professor of casting and acting at Webster University, Houk has also taught at Washington University and Columbia College Chicago.