The University of New Orleans School of the Arts launches its first arts festival, “Force Artistique,” on Monday, April 22 with a weeklong series of activities highlighting all its disciplines of study in music, fine arts, theatre, film and arts administration.
The festival, which runs April 22-26, features performances, film screenings, artist lectures and panel discussions featuring works by current students, national guest artists and notable members of the New Orleans arts community.
Caroline Mendez, operations coordinator for the School of the Arts, said the festival was created as a way to unite the New Orleans arts community and to bring a deeper awareness of what the University’s arts programs have to offer.
“We are providing a unique interdisciplinary experience for our students and the public with community programming that both highlights our students work, as well as exposes the public audience to artist and performers in an intimate and accessible format that they otherwise would have to travel or pay high ticket costs to experience,” Mendez said.
The festival also will kick off the start of the Prospect Artist guest speaker lecture series and includes two in-depth panel discussions: “New Orleans Women in the Arts” and “New Orleans: A Cultural Legacy.”
“We feel that, as a public university, we have a responsibility to be stewards, providing a centralized resource for the multiple disciplines in the arts to come together to promote discussion about the future of the arts in New Orleans and how we can work together to elevate and expand our reach,” Mendez said.
UNO’s School of the Arts ranks among the leading cultural and arts education centers in the Gulf South. Offering instruction in music, film, theatre, visual arts and arts administration, the School of the Arts nurtures creative and intellectual development, fosters collaboration among disciplines, embraces diversity and encourages community engagement.
It also serves the public as a regional center of cultural and intellectual activity with performances, exhibitions, lectures and workshops by students, faculty and guest artists in its galleries and performance spaces.
“With the festival, we hope that our audiences will be enriched and inspired by the incredible talent that our city fosters,” Mendez said.