Welcome to the start of a new season at Carolina Performing Arts. This is always an exciting time, one that I compare to the start of a new school year with old friends and new. This includes many of our visiting artists. There are old friends who think of Chapel Hill as a second home, where they re-connect with faculty members and dine at favorite restaurants. Then there are newcomers to our campus, bringing with them fresh ideas that, like so many of our own students and faculty, will change Carolina and the world.
The comparison with students and faculty is not an accident for us at CPA. Central to our work is Arts@TheCore, which operates with the belief that the arts have a critical role to play in the research, teaching, and service mission of the university. In just three years, we’ve expanded the number of courses that include CPA performances from 20 to 60. Crucially, these courses come from 20 departments across 6 schools of the university. In all, just one season sees over 2,200 student tickets purchased specifically for a course, connecting with more students than even the largest classroom on Carolina’s campus. At the same time, over 50 faculty—researchers in sciences, medicine, and the humanities—have joined our Arts@TheCore community, gaining new insights and talking with visiting artists and their own peers, some of whom they are meeting for the first time.
As you attend a performance this season, I encourage you to talk with the people sitting next to you. Some will be students with backpacks and notebooks because they understand that the performing arts have just as much to teach them as their chemistry lab or history lecture. An entirely new experience is about to unfold before them, one that can shape their learning and their lives. I hope you will join me in sharing these encounters with others throughout our season.
Executive and Artistic Director
Executive Director for the Arts
Professor of the Practice, Department of Music