WEST HARTFORD — CT Inclusive Arts announces that it’s performing and visual arts education program will culminate with an inaugural performance centered around the theme “Believe,” inspired by a lyrically powerful anthem by Connecticut band Atlas Gray, of the same name. The production will include over 50 Hartford-area youth of all abilities alongside acclaimed recording artists, said a release from the organization.
Featured musicians include headliner Atlas Gray, singer/songwriter Carrie Johnson, musician/songwriter/playwright Robbie Schaefer and solo artist Nekita Waller, Connecticut’s 17th State Troubadour. “Believe” will take center stage at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 21, at the Roberts Theater in West Hartford. Tickets are available to the public now at www.ctinclusivearts.org.
“Our program has been life-changing for so many students already, and we are proud to bring such a diverse, artistic event to the Greater Hartford area,” says Jane Woodcox, CT Inclusive Arts executive director. “Every week, our students lift each other in rehearsals, and alongside stellar “Believe” guest artists, they are certain to bring a new and empowering experience to the community.”
The innovative and inclusive arts education program was established in 2018 to dissolve barriers among students of all abilities and the Greater Hartford community. CT Inclusive Arts currently offers visual and performing arts classes for children and young adults with and without disabilities. Its unique, inclusive arts curriculum is rooted in a culture that fosters kindness, acceptance, respect, and empathy.
A successful series of classes are currently underway and staffed with professional teaching artists, special educators, and sign language interpreters. The students, who range from ages 10-21, participate based upon a passion for music and performing arts. Elements from Percussion Junction & Jam at American School for the Deaf in West Hartford, Sign Language Choir & Visual Art at The Ethel Walker School in Simsbury, and Music and Theater Mashup at Conard High School in West Hartford — will be incorporated into the March 21 production.
A significant inspiration behind CTIA’s “Believe” came from LIVE ART, a groundbreaking inclusive arts program founded in 2012 by SPARC, a performing arts school in Richmond, Virginia. CTIA students performed in their annual production in June 2019, celebrating the power of inclusive communities and the impact of the arts, in what has become a much-anticipated annual event in Richmond.
CTIA’s production host for “Believe” is Kingswood Oxford, where students and professional talent will perform in their 600-seat Roberts Theater. Open to everyone, it is sure to be a highly impactful evening celebrating inclusive communities, the power of music and performing arts, and why we should always believe in everyone’s ability.