‘Arts On The Move’ Helps Students Sample Local Arts Scene
Program Offers ‘Key to Unlock the Arts in the Lehigh Valley’
Advertising itself as an “arts shopping spree,” Moravian College’s “Arts On the Move” program strives to remove the obstacles standing between the College’s students enjoying and experiencing the arts in the Lehigh Valley. The biggest hurdle, the program determined, was cost. To eliminate the potential hit on wallets, Arts On the Move will provide free tickets – yes, free – to all Moravian students for concerts, films, museums, plays, art exhibits and dance performances in the area.
“It’s an initiative to encourage our students to go out into the local community and take advantage of the thriving arts scene in the Lehigh Valley,” said Christopher Shorr, the College’s director of theatre and the program’s co-director. “This program simply takes away the obstacle of the ticket price.”
To appeal to all interested students, Arts On The Move offers a variety of performance and exhibit options, but also accepts recommendations. The program will offer pre-approved “Spotlight Events” through the year, highlighting upcoming events such as the film “Greenwich Village: Music That Defined a Generation” on Sept. 17 at the Frank Banko Alehouse Cinema, ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks.
Students are invited to visit the HUB desk, which houses a binder full of brochures and informational content on different organizations and performance venues highlighted by Art On The Move. “Student can go through it like a menu and pick what they would like to see,” said Shorr.
Additionally, if students are interested in an event or performance not already highlighted, they are welcome to seek approval for other local events. (Arts On The Move will only provide tickets to events in the Lehigh Valley.) All requests will be considered, though there are restrictions, points out Shorr.
“Most things students want to see or experience, we approve and get them the tickets,” he said. “The problem is that some community organizations have programs that may across the ‘Pop line,’ and we will approve them on a case-by-case basis.”
Our program is about increasing the students’ awareness of what’s available.”
– Christopher Shorr
“The Bolshoi Ballet at Zoellner Art Center is an obvious, ‘yes,’ for tickets,” he explained. “Air Supply at the Sands Casino? Absolutely not. We’ve talked about whether we would approve students seeing a performer like Bob Dylan, and we would because he is a significant American poet.”
Once a student decides to attend an event, he or she completes a simple request form at the HUB desk, which will be forwarded for approval to the Art On the Move directors, Shorr and Ann Claussen, director of the HUB and event management. Once approved, arrangements are made with the organization, and students can pick up their tickets at the venue’s box office.
There are no limitations on how many times a student can obtain tickets, or visit to a particular location, but note that transportation and travel reimbursement are not provided. Faculty members are encouraged to participate, and their ticket will also be provided if he or she is leading a student group.
The Arts On The Move program was created by the Moravian College Arts and Lectures Committee in an attempt to increase the student and community involvement in the arts. While the committee plans to continue to promote on-campus programming, it is excited to provide opportunities to expose students to arts in the community. Following a soft launch of the program last year, Arts On The Move plans to be more visual beginning this fall semester, so look for future arts-related advertisements.
If the program, which has received ample support from area arts organizations, proves successful, program directors hope to expand it to other members of the Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Colleges.
“The big picture is that we want to get our students out into the theatres, concert halls and museums,” Shorr said. “Our program is about increasing the students’ awareness of what’s available.”
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