About this project
Our mission is to produce an annual multi-disciplinary arts festival in June of each year at the newly renovated Richard Rodgers Amphitheater in Marcus Garvey Park, free and open to the public, showcasing local performers and visual artists to inspire and nourish the artistic community in Harlem.
This year's festival is set to take place on Friday and Saturday, on June 29th and 30th!
We ask artists from all disciplines to apply via our website and submit their work, where a committee of established artistic presenters from Harlem with backgrounds in music, dance, theater, and visual arts will help select the artists that will perform each year.
This project will be part of Harlem’s addition to the larger, citywide commitment to provide free art in the public parks during the spring and summer months.
COMMUNITY SUPPORTERS & JOINT PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT
"The Museum for African Art stands with the Harlem Arts Festival in its goal of providing free arts programming that celebrates Harlem’s rich cultural landscape."
- Museum for African Arts
We have already received pledged support from the following individuals and organizations from within the community, and would love your support too:• Clyde Valentin: Executive Director of the Hip Hop Theater Festival• Grace Aneiza Ali: President of Of Note Magazine, Associate Director of the Dwyer Cultural Center• Harlem Park to Park• Homer E. Cook: Community Outreach Coordinator for the Global Technology Preparatory School & The NYC Department of Education
• Jan Willem Van Bergen: Board Member Adarsh Alphons Project• Larry Scott Blackmon: Deputy Commissioner of Community Outreach, City of New York & Recreation• Lawrence Rodriguez: Executive Director of Casa Frela Gallery• Saundra Heath: Executive Director of Heath Gallery• Senator Bill Perkins: New York State Senate, 30th District
• Simone Eccleston: Programming and Arts Education Manager of Harlem Stage• Sidney Grant: Artistic Director at Ballroom Basix• Lynette Velasco: Chief of Staf for the Office of Councilwoman Dickens• Voza Rivers: Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce and Harlem Arts Alliance
A little more about the staff:
Neal Ludevig (Executive Director) is a music industry professional with extensive experience in music booking, development, management, and performance administration. Neal currently is an Artist Coordinator and Music Booking Agent at Addeo Music International (AMI) booking agency in New York City. He is responsible for managing and organizing (inter)national tours for a number of internationally acclaimed artists, working with a number of performing arts organizations and festivals throughout the world, including Jazz at Lincoln Center, the North Sea Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, the Montreal Jazz Festival, and others. Neal has also worked as a representative for Make Music NY, which brings free music each year in every borough of Manhattan. Prior to living in New York Neal taught English and Music in Hamyang, South Korea. Neal holds a B.A. from Brandeis University in Sociology and American Studies, speaks conversational Russian and French, and plays and records the piano, guitar, bass, flute, and saxophone. He also enjoys dancing, teaching and playing tennis.
J.J. El-Far (Creative Director) is an Arab American multi-disciplinary creator of theater based in Harlem. She has been creating theater for over twenty years, and has extensive background in arts festivals planning and execution. J.J. is the Founding Executive Director of Hybrid Theatre Works, and organization working at the intersection of theater and peace building dedicated to cultural diplomacy. She worked in various capacities including development, marketing, production, and administration at Berkshire Theatre Festival, the Leonard Bernstein Festival of the Arts at Brandeis University, the Jerash Festival of Arts and Culture in Amman, Jordan, and the Planet Connections Theatre Festivity in NYC. She has planned conferences and events for LaMaMa ETC, and Theatre Without Borders featuring 40-70 international participants, performances, and educational events. She freelances as a producer, director, and playwright of devised and experimental theater. She is also a contributing critic for www.uptownflavor.com. She holds a B.A. from Brandeis University in Theater Arts and International Global Studies. She teaches various types of theater, specializing in physical and movement based techniques, community development, storytelling, and improvisation.
Chelsea Goding (Development Director) is a dedicated dance administrator with extended experience in management, presentation, and special event planning. She is currently the Education Associate at New York City Center where she coordinates the Young People’s Dance Series; City Center Education’s largest program that connects elementary, middle, and high school students with world-renowned dance companies and artists. Previously she was the Company Manager of Gallim Dance. Chelsea has also worked at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival as the Presenting Intern, and at Queens Theater in the Park as the Arts and Business Council of New York Multicultural Intern. Chelsea holds a BS in Arts Administration and a BA in Spanish from Butler University, as well as a minor in Visual Arts.
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