Power of Culture Blog
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Mass Cultural Council is proud to partner with three state agencies – the Department of Transitional Assistance, the Massachusetts Health Connector, and the Women, Infants, & Children (WIC) Nutrition Program (administered by the Department of Public Health) – on Card to Culture, the nation’s most comprehensive effort to expand cultural access for low-income and working families.
To date, over 350 participating organizations and landmark sites have provided over one million free or steeply discounted admissions for Massachusetts residents through Card to Culture. Since January 2023, Mass Cultural Council has onboarded more than 20 new organizations to further access, community connection, and cultural engagement across the Commonwealth.
Please help us welcome these new organizations that champion the same big ideas embedded within Card to Culture.
A Closer Look
“We are proud to participate in Card to Culture because it allows us to share knowledge, educate, empower, and provide enjoyment with music written by women composers throughout history,” said Laury Gutierrez, La Donna Musicale Director.
Another music performing group, Castle of our Skins, is a Black arts institution dedicated to fostering cultural curiosity and celebrating Black artistry through music.
“One of the driving principles of our organization is to encourage cultural curiosity, and as such, access to culture is key. Our programs have been pay-what-you-like up to this point, so joining Card to Culture felt like a natural next step,” said Kelley Hollis, Castle of our Skins Digital Media Manager.
“We believe that all families should have access to quality dance programming, events, and education at every income level. For that reason, we strive to make much of our events and programs free but for the programs and events that we cannot offer for free, Cards to Culture helps fill the gap by assisting families that need/could use additional support,” said Ashton Lites, StiggityStackz Worldwide Creative Director.
Similarly, Resilient Community Arts (RCA) provides an accessible, community-driven arts space that fosters meaningful independent creativity and nurtures collaborative efforts to bring marginalized identities into the center of the arts.
“Card to Culture has provided us with yet another network in which to share our resources and fulfill our mission,” said Maddie McDougall, RCA Director. “We are excited to get involved and reach more families who might otherwise have limited access to arts experiences.”
In Central Massachusetts, Fivesparks, a dynamic community arts collaborative, provides equal access to opportunities that deepen and diversify cultural and social experiences.
“We see the arts as a universally accessible way to connect visitors to our community and to each other, and feel that these connections have the potential to enhance our overall ability to execute our mission,” said Mark Mikitarian, Fivesparks President.
Between The Company Theatre entertaining, enlightening, and energizing audiences with high-quality productions and Liars & Believers moving the hearts, challenging the minds, and feasting the senses — these two theatrical production organizations are sure to appease all theater-loving audiences.
Serving as hubs in their respective communities, the UMass Amherst Fine Arts Center hosts Jazz in July, a program allowing students to study jazz improvisation and perform with some of the nation’s best jazz educators and artists. In Taunton, The District Center for the Arts will be featuring performances by Motley Crue, Prince, and ZZ Top tribute bands (among others) over the next several weeks.
“Participating in Card to Culture allows folks who don’t typically have a chance to experience the type of artists we present. We have seen a lot of really happy people come through. It is so rewarding to deliver high-end entertainment for all,” said Alex Stylos, “The District” creator.
More New Offerings
Below are a few more of the new organizations diversifying the types of institutions, disciplines, and activities represented in the program: