Arts are vital to our quality of life. In addition to the economic benefits – the nation’s arts and culture sector is a nearly $700 billion industry, representing a larger share of the economy than transportation and agriculture – arts impact the very fabric of lives and communities.

Reasons for supporting the arts abound. A high arts concentration in a city leads to higher civic engagement, more social cohesion, higher child welfare, and lower crime and poverty rates.

Through the Creative Catalyst Program, The San Diego Foundation strengthens the region’s local creative sector by supporting emerging and established artists whose pieces spark conversation, invite community members to explore new worlds and celebrate our region’s unique diversity.

Upcoming Creative Catalyst Performances

In its third cycle of awards, the 2015 Creative Catalyst projects invite community members to engage in local arts performances that address personal, community and global themes. Check out the following opportunities to be part of the creative process.

  • Common Chords Extreme!
    Hear chamber music inspired by Somali folk music with solos from local Somali artists in Yale Strom’s project “Common Chords Extreme!” on Tuesday, October 6 at 6:00 p.m. at the San Diego Repertory Theater.Yale Strom - Creative Catalyst
    Creative Catalyst Fellow: Yale Strom

    Yale supports San Diego communities in better understanding each other through music.

    As part of his fellowship, Yale works with two of San Diego’s growing communities– Somali and Chaldean – to explore their rick folk music traditions and develop a traditional classical music piece to be performed with soloists from each community.

  • Venture Galactic
    Experience an interactive theatrical performance in Todd Blakesley’s “Venture Galactic” from November 12 – 15 at RAW Space Off Broadway in downtown San Diego.Creative Catalyst
    Creative Catalyst Fellow: Todd Blakesley

    Todd’s out-of-this world theatrical experience launches audience members-turned-passengers on a space journey destined to a parallel universe. Aboard the Apieron Class Super Cruiser, theater goers’ choices and actions directly affect their survival as they flee Earth due to extreme weather, drought, disease and ideological strife. The performance is done in partnership with Playwrights Project.
  • When It Comes
    Watch a theatrical tale with live music and shadow puppetry in Mike Sears’ production of “When it Comes” December 11 – 13 at The Old Globe.Creative Catalyst
    Creative Catalyst Fellow: Mike Sears

    “When It Comes” is a metaphorical story of a couple who try to have a child and the experiences they encounter along the way. Based on Mike’s personal experience and stories from members of the San Diego community who have all sought to be parents through one means or another, the play follows a couple’s journey to gather the moon. When they discover that it is not theirs for the having, their attempt to navigate this loss will change their lives forever.

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The Creative Catalyst: Individual Artist Fellowship Program provides opportunities for local professional artists like Yale, Todd and Mike to create work that advances their careers and increases civic engagement and social capital within San Diego neighborhoods.

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About Vi Calvo

Vi CalvoAs the Community Impact Manager at The San Diego Foundation, Vi works with local governments, nonprofits, academic institutions and community groups to identify and support strategic partnerships throughout the region aligned with Work, Enjoy, Live and Learn (WELL). Vi earned a bachelor’s degree in Communications from UC Santa Barbara and a master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership and Management from the University of San Diego.

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