Taking our Place Centerstage: The African Diaspora in Harmony

The Ordway’s mission includes working outside of Ordway’s walls. Our artistic and educational programs create opportunities for artists to interact with community organizations that support young people and more.

In October 2010, the Ordway with SoulTouch Productions, launched Taking Our Place Centerstage (TOPC). In partnership with communities of African ancestry, the initiative is committed to artistic, educational and economic engagement. The most recent example of collaboration was with the Sabathani Community Center in Minneapolis, which has been a part of the TOPC coalition.


This summer, the Ordway partnered with Sabathani and the We Win Institute to create Young Voices Centerstage, funded by the Minnesota State Arts Board’s Arts Access program.  This program connected youth in the community with teaching artists from the Twin Cities. At the end of September, young people in the Sabathani neighborhood participated in a workshop with singer-songwriter Raul Midón, followed by an interview and sample of his work in the Sabathani auditorium. Many of those students will be attending the Raul Midón/ Lizz Wright performance at the Ordway on October 25.

We also continue our commitment to access for all students to the Ordway and its hosted artists.  More than 3,000 children will attend Performing Arts Classrooms (PAC) featuring all three of the World Music artists performing this weekend, Raul Midon, Lizz Wright and Yemen Blues. During this season, we will reach over 50,000 young people through our education programs.

Soon, with the input of a Council of community members, we will be announcing a full schedule of activities surrounding more outreach into the African and African-American communities, called Taking Our Place Centerstage: The African Diaspora in Harmony. Read more.