When I bang the drum for investment into the arts, with national and local government, with philanthropists, charities and companies, a consensus is emerging as to why this is so important. It starts with the inherent value of culture, continues through all the social and educational benefits and ends with the arts being an economic driver. We instinctively know this.
Imagine society without the civilizing influence of the arts and you'll have to strip out what is most pleasurable in life – and much that is educationally vital. Take the collective memory from our museums; remove the bands from our schools and choirs from our communities; lose the empathetic plays and dance from our theatres or the books from our libraries; expunge our festivals, literature and painting, and you're left with a society bereft of a national conversation … about its identity or anything else. Then there's society.
Although the arts do not pretend to be a front-line for health and community service, we're coming to understand how they can function very effectively in a complementary role. For example, on Sunday, February 11 from 2-4 PM, in collaboration with Bedford Get Together, we invite you, the community, to come together and have fun with art. Express yourself and experiment with different form of arts while connecting- with family, friends or other community members. Bring your kids, your grandparents. This event is free – because we and Bedford Get Together believe community building opportunities via the arts like this should be open and available to all – ensuring inclusivity. It is my sincere goal to host many more arts & cultural community events.
These events happen through your support. Consider this: When you purchase a ticket to our concert venue, participate in our fundraisers, sponsor or donate, you are not just supporting the Bower Center for the Arts. You are investing into your own community.