Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is the local nonprofit arts and culture agency that enhances the city’s quality of life through advancing and investing in the arts and diverse cultural programming. The work of HAA encourages Houston’s development and shapes its global reputation by fostering tourism and supporting and promoting the city’s creative economy.
Creating public spaces for civic and cultural use requires artists, designers, architects, and the community to collaborate. By actively fostering these partnerships, both public and private, HAA’s Civic Art + Design program initiates, manages, and maintains public artworks throughout Houston. It serves a vital role as catalyst for change that generates a culturally relevant and rich environment for residents and visitors alike.
Houston Arts Alliance’s Folklife + Civic Engagement program identifies and honors the artistic and cultural traditions of the city’s tremendously diverse and various communities and works to address the needs of all residents through engagement, citizen-driven initiatives, and equitable community outcomes. The Folklife program has been in existence since 2010. The addition of Civic Engagement to its portfolio was enacted through an HAA bylaws change in 2016.
Grants are a fundamental means of promoting excellence in the creative sector. On behalf of the City of Houston, HAA awards approximately 225 grants annually to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations and individual artists through a competitive grant allocation process.
Houston Arts Alliance provides voice and leadership through its support of arts organizations and individual artists with programs and services that help build and foster a vibrant and creative community—these programs and services help to ensure that the arts professionals’ creative contributions remain a vital part of community life across Houston and the region.
As the designated, nonprofit local arts and culture agency, Houston Arts Alliance provides a public forum for arts and culture issues that our relevant to our community. Throughout the year, Houston Arts Alliance hosts conversations and panel discussions that are free and open to the public. HAA also periodically convenes the arts and culture field for special opportunities important to the sector.
Houston Arts Alliance continues to play an important role in arts and culture research projects, initiating and participating in studies that demonstrate the far-reaching impact of arts and culture on our economy and quality of life.
Looking for a way to lend a hand? Investing in the arts and culture is an investment in the quality of life for all Houstonians. Join Houston Arts Alliance as a donor, member or volunteer!
Houston Arts Alliance utilizes different vehicles to communicate with it diverse audiences, ranging from the city’s arts and culture community to residents to tourists. Find out more about HAA’s electronic newsletters and connect with us through social media. Our online Press Room provides resources for members of the media.
Stories, spoken word pieces, songs and poems on the subject of hurricanes
Presented in partnership with Houston Grand Opera
Wednesday, May 4, 2016
7 p.m., Doors; 8 p.m., Show
Rudyard’s British Pub, 2010 Waugh Dr.
Houston and Galveston, like any city along the Gulf and Atlantic coasts of the U.S., are always vulnerable to tropical weather. The most frightening of these events is the hurricane, with its fierce winds and massive storm surges that can spell devastation for anything in its path.
STORM SONGS & STORIES was inspired by the voices of the multitudes of storm survivors. Hurricanes such as Katrina, Rita and Ike in this region—and even earlier, the Great Storm of Galveston in 1900—are all too familiar in this part of the United States. Most Houstonians have a hurricane story, and STORM SONGS & STORIES invited them to share theirs.
The program was a multidisciplinary open mic format featuring first timers and seasoned vets sharing their stories, spoken word pieces, songs and poems on the subject of these storms.
STORM SONGS & STORIES is an outgrowth of two major projects. In 2005, a storytelling project called Surviving Katrina and Rita in Houston, led by University of Houston Folklore professor Carl Lindahl and public folklorist Pat Jasper (currently the director of Houston Arts Alliance’s Folklife + Traditional Arts program), trained Houston-based hurricane survivors from these two massive events to conduct interviews with over 400 fellow survivors, giving voice to the experiences of these individuals on their own terms. Most of these narratives now reside in the collections of the Library of Congress.
In May of 2016, Houston Grand Opera presented their world premiere of After the Storm, a story of loss, resilience, and the power of community. The work mines the legacy of the region’s Great Storm of 1900 and Hurricane Ike of 2008. This riveting chamber opera, rooted in one family’s crisis, was developed through historical research and interviews with residents of Galveston and Houston.
In this light, Houston Arts Alliance’s Folklife + Traditional Arts program and HGOco came together to create an opportunity, for the larger public to participate and share their own hurricane stories, through the medium of their choosing.