[image-1] Today Spoleto Festival USA 2019 announced this year’s schedule of community engagement, with a focus on education. Spoleto ETC (engaging the community) connects Spoleto artists and Charleston residents, with an emphasis on building audiences of the future.

Spoleto looks to give back to Charleston through tailored education programs for area students, a discussion series and partnership with area organizations, and investment in the professional advancement of young artists.

In a press release festival general director Nigel Redden said, “From my personal experience, I know that an introduction to the performing arts at a young age can certainly be life-changing.”

This year’s education outreach includes visits from Bank of America Chamber Music artists to local schools including Sanders-Clyde Creative Arts School and Memminger Elementary. Local students will also get the chance to see where these artists perform during a special trip to Dock Street Theatre and Emmet Robinson Theatre.

A number of Spoleto artists and administrators will also work with student-focused organizations outside of schools like the Charleston Symphony Youth Orchestra and CofC’s arts management program.

This year’s community outreach efforts include its Open Stage Door program, which every year provides over 800 complimentary tickets to community-based and nonprofit organizations in the area.

The fest also presents a free concert for families and caregivers of individuals with Autism, the Azure Concert, organized by pianist Stephen Prutsman and held at Dock Street Theatre on Sat. May 25 at 10:15 a.m. This is a free event, but be sure to register ahead of time by emailing Sara Bennett at sbennett@spoletousa.org.
[image-3] As always, the festival hosts free salons (there’s one tomorrow, Tues. April 30), a discussion series that illuminates elements of the upcoming season.

Throughout the festival you can head to free artist talks, from conversations with festival director of choral activities Joe Miller to jazz talks with artist David Virelles to master classes with visiting dance companies.

Rounding out the festival’s ETC programming is its work with the professional advancement of young artists including the young pro musicians in the Spoleto Festival USA Orchestra and the singers of Westminster Choir. Spoleto also offers an apprenticeship program, a short-term internship opportunity that allows college-age students to work under the guidance of professional arts administrators and technicians.

Learn more about the festival and all of its ETC programs online at spoletousa.org