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Giving+Together - Arts

Supporting the arts through Collaboration

Donors gathered recently for the latest Giving+Together event at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in Saint Paul to hear from representatives from The Arts Partnership.

The Arts Partnership, which began in 2006, is a collaborative effort of the four arts organizations that share the Ordway’s space. The Partnership is staffed by Jamie Grant, president and CEO of the Ordway, Barry Kempton, artistic and executive director of Schubert Club, Jon Limbacher, vice president and chief operating officer of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and Ryan Taylor, president and general director of Minnesota Opera, all of whom work collaboratively on joint programming and other goals related to their shared success and use of the space.

All four leaders treated donors to a panel discussion about their partnership and what collaboration can look like in the nonprofit sector. Nadege Souvenir, vice president of Operations & Learning for the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation, facilitated the discussion.

One topic of interest was the evolution of the organizational relationships. At first, the organizations were not optimally designed for partnerships as they were originally set up for competition, not for cooperation. But now, through the partnership and shared work, they are navigating several critical issues, both as independent entities and through the Partnership. Shared learnings include securing funding sources; ensuring accessibility, diversity and equity in their work; and communicating the public value of their organizations.

Making the Arts More Accessible

During the discussion, the leaders shared several innovative highlights from their organizations.

The Schubert Club offers sensory-friendly concerts. These concerts allow audience members to enjoy a concert experience with additional sensory-friendly accommodations, such as slightly dimmed lighting among other considerations.

The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra provides its concert library available for free via an app and works in partnership with 10 Twin Cities schools through the CONNECT program — a free, supplementary, music education program for students in grades 1-5.

The Ordway launched Taking Our Place Centerstage (TOPC). In partnership with communities of African ancestry, the initiative is committed to artistic, educational and economic engagement and has enabled the development of new and unique programming.

And the Minnesota Opera is developing an expanded Resident Artist Program to include administrative and production positions for emerging leaders of color.

The event closed with questions from the attendees, giving everyone the opportunity to dive a little deeper into the world of the Arts.

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Contact your philanthropic advisor for details about upcoming Giving+Together events.

Interested in the Arts?

Get to know the Minnesota-based nonprofits providing arts opportunities to their community in the lists below.

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