Concerts and PCAC Resources Support Pleasanton
School’s Music and Visual Arts Programs
To help ensure a rich and sustainable program in music/strings in the Pleasanton schools, Kelly Cousins and Dave Wright, co-presidents of the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council (PCAC), donated $7,000 of PCAC resources to the music program at the May 24th Board Meeting of the Pleasanton School District. Cousins spoke about “how–years ago–there was a 20 year hiatus in the strings program.”
Then, 12 years ago, PCAC advocated—with others– for a full time faculty member in the 4th and 5th grades to begin a strings program; also PCAC donated musical instruments—and, eventually, a full-scale strings program developed up through Foothill and Amador high schools. PCAC wanted that to continue. “Our community and schools need to ensure funds for music programs that support thousands of students. You cannot just start and stop music programs after students have studied and begun playing instruments– and then expect them to ‘pick up’ where they left off if program staff is underfunded for a year or two,” said Wright. “PCAC was proud to give some small assistance, to add to what PPIE and PSEE have already offered,” he said.
Additionally, Charlotte Severin and Dave Wright, co-chairs for the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council two-piano benefit concert last year with Tamriko Siprashvili and Temirzhan Yerzhanov, and Delores Bengtson, concert committee member, presented a second check for $7,000 to Jim Hansen, acting superintendent for the Pleasanton Unified School District. That money will go to support visual arts in Pleasanton Primary Schools.
Amador Theater Concerts
PCAC has staged three successful classical piano concerts at the Amador Theater during the last three years–concerts that brought in just under $23,000 to support our “Arts in the Schools Programs” in Pleasanton’s schools. The latest concert, “Four Hands and a Baton.” featured internationally renowned pianist duo, Temirzhan Yerzhanov and Klara Frei, and music director Imant Airea leading he youth Orchestra Gradus ad Parnassum at the Amador Theater in Pleasanton. Temirzhan, the artistic director also conducted.
Recent Arts Partnership
PCAC partnered with the Tri-Valley YMCA to support its “Youth Arts Fair” in August of 2016. The fair included entries from the 400 students who were enrolled in the YMCA summer program and culminated with an arts showcase in August 2016. The program was supported by artist-volunteers from PCAC, from the Pleasanton Art League (PAL), and from the Livermore Art Association.
Also, PCAC is also working with the Civic Arts Commission, the City, and with financial donors to bring a piece of sculptural art to the City-renovated Cultural Arts Building on Black Avenue, right next to the Delores Bengtson Aquatic Center. PCAC has contributed $11,000 to support the $56,000 Jon Seeman Sculpture. Other contributors are the City of Pleasanton, and, Nancy and Gary Harrington, ardent “Art in Public Places” supporters.
City Signature Downtown Event
Because the Civic Arts Commission has agreed to take over a signature downtown event to replace the “Big Draw” Chalk and Arts Festival which PCAC created, managed, and staged for three years (2013-2015), there will be no such event in 2016. The event–most likely under a different name– will be expanded and resume in 2017, under the leadership of the City of Pleasanton. PCAC will partner with the City to help create and grow the event. It will take one year of planning to enlarge this signature event though partnership with the groups who wish to participate in the planning and execution of this newly conceived event. Watch for announcements of the date, time, and place on this website. The working title at this point is “Pleasanton, the Intersection of Arts and Innovation.” Initially it will become, an evening event in October.
Historic Stained Glass Art Piece Returns to Pleasanton through a generous donation to PCAC
“P-Town Race” Returns
Pleasanton was a big winner at Sotheby’s auction. Margene Rivara, renowned stained glass artist and creator of the commissioned window “P-Town Race”, saw her masterpiece leave Pleasanton for auction in January, 2009. Her brother David Gerton bought it in a competitive phone auction and– with the help of the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Council (PCAC) and David’s generosity– it has now been returned to Pleasanton.
“P-Town Race” is a unique stained glass artwork, perhaps one of a few in the United States showing harness racing. Certainly it is the only public stained glass window depicting harness racing in Pleasanton at the oldest one mile track in America. On Nov. 26, 2016 it was reinstalled in its former site in the Pleasanton Hotel where it graced the front window for 27 years. A bar and restaurant now leases the location. You can bet “P-Town Race” will draw many admiring toasts from patrons of Handles on Main.