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It’s a Celebration! The 2017 BCA 10 Gala: Best Businesses That Partner with the Arts

Posted by Jessica Gaines
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It’s a Celebration! The 2017 BCA 10 Gala: Best Businesses That Partner with the Arts

On October 11th, business and arts leaders gathered at the iconic Central Park Boathouse in New York City to honor the best businesses partnering with the arts in America at the annual BCA 10 Awards. Now in its 13th year, this black-tie gala presented by Americans for the Arts’ Business Committee for the Arts brought an evening of stories and musical performances that showcased the great gain in the business and arts communities coming together. 

 

The companies recognized this year join an illustrious list of honorees who are transforming their businesses and their communities by partnering with the arts to foster innovation, engage employees, and contribute to the health and quality of local life. This year’s BCA 10 honorees are:

 

21c Museum Hotels

Cardinal Health

Guitar Center Inc.

Halekulani Corporation

Houston Methodist

Humana Inc.

Kaiser Permanente Colorado

Lincoln Financial Group

Magic Hat Brewing Company

The Betsy-South Beach

 

 

UNIQLO and The Museum of Modern Art received the BCA pARTnership Award and Raymond J. McGuire, Global Head of Corporate & Investment Banking, Citi, received the BCA Leadership Award.

 

 

  

The night kicked off with a cocktail hour for attendees overlooking the Central Park Lake, and was followed by award presentations, dinner, and musical performances. Each BCA honoree was presented with an original inscribed piece of glass from the artists at Rosetree Glass. Broadway, film, and tv star Santino Fontana, performed jazzy tunes and a few from his performance career.  Cellist Derek Loue, student at the Juilliard School of Music, gave an enchanting solo performance.

 

 

Honorees 21c Museum Hotels, Halekulani Corporation, and The Betsy-South Beach come from the hotel industry. 21c Museum Hotels puts contemporary art at the heart of its experience. The company was founded by contemporary art collectors and preservationists who believe in the power of art to transform communities. Halekulani has created and developed a bespoke program of experiences for its guests and patrons, including its “For You, Everything” program, which invites guests to enjoy the cultural and arts offering on Oahu through VIP complimentary access and select private docent tours at some of the most famous and iconic arts and cultural institutions in the city. The Betsy Hotel—family-owned and independently operated—aims to capture and champion the power of community through its dedicated PACE (Philanthropy, Arts, Culture, and Education) program.

 

Cardinal Health, Houston Methodist, Humana Inc. and Kaiser Permanente Colorado come from the healthcare industry. Cardinal Health’s culture of giving back to the arts begins with chairman, CEO, and classically trained opera singer, George Barrett, who frequently says that the arts influence his leadership style. Houston Methodist’s programs of its Center for Performing Arts Medicine have expanded to include integration of the performing and visual arts into the hospital environment, where the power of the arts accelerate patient healing and provide holistic care. Humana prioritizes arts and health research by enlisting the support of creative economy producers and supports the arts through donations and volunteerism. Kaiser Permanente Colorado has supported the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts, facilitating programming within the organization that cultivates employee creativity and connectedness

 

Guitar Center, widely known for its instrument and monetary support to more than 400 schools, music programs, charities, and nonprofit organizations each year. Magic Hat Brewing Company accepted their award with a spirited toast in the tradition of the company. Lincoln Financial Group has been a long-standing partner to the arts in the communities in which it has a major business presence, supporting many cornerstone organizations through the years.

 

UNIQLO and MoMA’s shared passion for quality, innovation, and spreading the joy of art around the world lends to their dynamic partnership and Raymond McGuire brings his style of humor, wit, intensity, and thoughtfulness to his work and that which touches the arts.

 

We are thankful to our sponsors, event attendees, performers, presenters, and nominators for contributing to such a successful night celebrating businesses that partner with the arts.

 

Nominations for the BCA 10 Awards open in November. We look forward to learning about the creative arts and business partnerships in your community.

 

View the BCA 10 program book to learn more about this year’s best businesses partnering with the arts.

 

Photo 1:

(Left to Right) Robert Lynch, President & CEO, Americans for the Arts, Thelma Golden, Director and Chief Curator, Studio Museum Harlem, and 2017 BCA Leadership honoree Raymond McGuire, Global Head of Corporate and Investment Banking, Citi. Photo by Rana Faure.

 

Photo 2:

Santino Fontana performs at the BCA 10 with Steven Fiefke on the piano. Photo by Rana Faure.

 

Photo 3:

Peter Shaindlin, COO of Halekulani Corporation accepts a 2017 BCA 10 award.Photo by Rana Faure.

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The Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts are Featured in Forbes

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This year's BCA 10 honorees are using the arts to meet business goals in moving ways. We are proud to recognize them with an ad in the 100th Anniversay Issue of Forbes, "100 Greatest Business Minds" (page 169, September 28).

 

Each attendee of this year's BCA 10: Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts in America gala, held on October 11 at the Central Park Boathouse in New York City, receives a copy of the issue and an opportunity to congratulate this year's honorees.

 

 

For more information, read the BCA 10 press release.

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Hear from the Business Leaders of the 2017 BCA 10: Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts

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Now that you have read about this year’s BCA 10 honorees, let’s take the time to meet the leaders. These business executives, representing a range of industries from hotels to healthcare to retail, are inspiring. Support them because they have allowed the arts to shine in their businesses and communities across the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more infomation about the October 11th BCA 10 Gala visit   www.americansforthearts.org/events/bca-10.

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Behind the Business: Learning about the 2017 BCA 10 Honorees, Best Businesses Partnering with Arts in America

Posted by Jessica Gaines
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On October 11th, businesses of all types and sizes will come together for the BCA 10 gala at the Central Park Boathouse in New York to be recognized by Americans for the Arts for their outstanding commitment to the arts.

 

But WHO are these honorees?

 

Learn more about their arts partnerships below including corporate performance groups, extensive art exhibits, and some fierce board leadership.

 

 

21c Museum Hotels, Louisville, KY

Founded in 2006 by Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, the very bedrock of 21c Museum Hotels has been community transformation and economic revitalization through the arts. The business rehabilitates underappreciated properties within urban cores, transforming these buildings into hotel and restaurant spaces with art works from more than 2,500 living established and emerging artists from around the world, available for public view 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 21c Museum Hotels also offers-in kind donations of event space for local and national non-profit arts organizations, hosting 1,500 arts and cultural events in 2016 alone. 21c Museum Hotels was nominated for the BCA 10 by the Fund for the Arts.

 

Success Story here.

 

 

Cardinal Health, Dublin, OH

Cardinal Health knows that supporting the arts makes communities more attractive to current and future employees, and leverages this knowledge to support the arts. Since 2008 Cardinal Health has donated nearly $8.75 million to arts organizations such as the Dublin Arts Council, Columbus Children’s Theater, and the Lincoln Theater. Cardinal Health advances diversity, equity and inclusion programming through initiatives such as “Shifting Perspectives,” a three-year photographic exploration of individuals living with Down Syndrome. The organization regularly treats employees to free in-office performances and is a key partner in the largest-ever initiative for marketing the arts in Ohio, “Art Makes Columbus/Columbus Makes Art”. Cardinal Health was nominated for the BCA 10 by the Dublin Arts Council. 

 

Success Story here.

 

 

 

 

Guitar Center Inc., Westlake Village, CA

Guitar Center Inc. sees the arts as a gift to the world. From its inception, it has embodied arts and business partnership through supporting music education and musicians, creating a culture that sustains a love for music. Since 2008, Guitar Center Inc. has donated over $2.5 million to non-profit arts organizations. Further, it regularly provides monetary support and instruments to over 400 schools, music programs, and non-profit organizations each year such as Little Kids Rock, Girls Rock Camp and MusiCares. Employees are even allowed “Gig Leave,” which permits them to continue their love for music through touring with musical acts or performing in solo concerts. Guitar Center Inc. was self-nominated for the BCA 10.

 

 

Halekulani Corporation, Honolulu, HI

Halekulani Corporation realizes that investing in the arts supports its business as well as the community – starting from a history patronizing artists since the 17th century all the way to the present day. For the past 20 years, Halekulani Corporation has partnered with Honolulu’s top arts and culture institutions to offer complimentary access to hotel guests, spanning a variety of activities from dance to theater and beyond. Employees have been included in the arts, as well, via an Employee Enrichment Program. Community partners include organizations such as the Honolulu Museum of Art, the Bishop Museum and Iolani Palace. Halekulani Corporation was nominated for the BCA 10 by the Hawaii Arts Alliance.

 

Success Story here.

 

 

Houston Methodist, Houston, TX

Houston Methodist is a healthcare organization that has been serving not just the body, but the soul since its origination in 1919. Through its one-of-a-kind Center for Performing Arts Medicine (CPMAM) medical facility, it offers specialized care for the needs of performing and visual artists, serving more than 600 artists a year. Houston Methodist is the official health care provider and sponsor to the Houston Grand Opera, the Houston Symphony and the Houston Ballet. Employees’ lives are enriched through HR Arts Enrichment classes as well as opportunities to participate in annual photography exhibitions. Houston Methodist was nominated for the BCA 10 by the Houston Grand Opera Association, Inc.

 

Humana Inc., Louisville, KY

For over 40 years, Humana has seen the arts as an engine for positive impact in economic development, education, and overall quality of life. Humana prioritizes arts-health research through enlisting the support of creative economy producers as resources for advancing Humana’s Bold Goal, which aims to achieve a 20 percent improvement in public health outcomes for Louisville by 2020. Humana serves as a long-term underwriter for the Humana Festival of New American Plays by the Actors Theater of Louisville, and raises money for the Fund for the Arts, contributing over $1.2 million in 2016. Humana was nominated for the BCA 10 by IDEAS xLab and Fund for the Arts.

 

 

Kaiser Permanente Colorado, Denver, CO

Over the past 48 years, Kaiser Permanente Colorado has been invested in the health of its community. The non-profit healthcare organization cultivates community well-being with dedicated support, creating an Arts Integrated Resource Department (AIR) to leverage the arts as a tool for improving educational and health outcomes. It led award-winning theatrical productions and initiatives touching more than 183,000 people in 2014 alone. Kaiser Permanente Colorado has benefited a variety of organizations such as the Denver Art Museum and Denver Botanic Gardens. Employees even promote the arts as a healing power through a company art board. Kaiser Permanente Colorado was nominated for the BCA 10 by the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts. 

 

 

Lincoln Financial Group, Radnor, PA

Lincoln Financial Group supports the arts because it believes they are truly a service to the community – shaping and inspiring young minds, transforming lives and enriching the workplace. The organization has more than 50 years of history supporting the arts, contributing to organizations such as The Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, and the National Folk Festival. Lincoln Financial Group also houses a corporate art collection featuring over 1,000 unique works. Since 2016, the organization has given more than $23 million to arts nonprofits in key practice locations: Concord, NH; Greensboro, NC; Hartford, CT; Fort Wayne, IN; Omaha, NS; and Philadelphia, PA. Lincoln Financial Group was nominated for the BCA 10 award by ArtsGreensboro.

 

 

 

Magic Hat Brewing Company, Burlington, Vermont

Since its founding in 1994, the Magic Hat Brewing Company has cherished the arts - offering free performance spaces for local theaters and music groups and hosting fundraising events within its on-site beer tasting and art space, Artifactory. The brewery has also supported Vermont’s largest and longest running community arts event, the South End Art Hop, for nearly 25 years, contributing to attracting over 30,000 visitors to Vermont’s South End Arts District with marketing support as well as the Art Hop Ale event. Employees are encouraged to volunteer at least 8 hours on company time, with no upper limit. Magic Hat Brewing Company was nominated for the BCA 10 by the South End Arts & Business Association.

 

 

The Betsy-South Beach, Miami, FL

Since its opening in 2009, the Betsy-South Beach has viewed the arts as a central unifier. The Betsy-South Beach has partnered with more than 200 arts organizations and sponsored thousands of events, many of which employees have been given free tickets to attend. As a two-time recipient of the Knight Foundation Art Challenge Grant, it has a national reputation for creating and presenting major cultural programs such as The Betsy’s A Capella Festival, Writers for Young Readers, TRANSART – a program that honors transgender creative voices, and Escribe Aqui/Write Here IberoAmerican Cultural Initiative. The Betsy-South Beach was nominated for the BCA 10 by the Arts & Business Council of Miami.

 

 

BCA Leadership Award Raymond J. McGuire, Global Head of Corporate & Investment Banking, Citi

Raymond J. McGuire is a contemporary art collector, active arts leader and philanthropist who serves as the Global Head of Corporate & Investment banking at Citi. He gives back to the community by serving on numerous boards with organizations such as the Studio Museum in Harlem (Chairman), the De La Salle Academy (Chairman Emeritus) andthe New York Public Library (Executive Committee and Co-Chairman Nominating Committee). He is also an active member of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission, which advises Mayor de Blasio and the Commissioner of Cultural Affairs on issues affecting NYC’s cultural community.

 

 

 

BCA pARTnership AwardUNIQLO and MoMA, New York, NY

UNIQLO and The Museum of Modern Art (New York, NY) – UNIQLO, the global apparel retailer, and The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) share a passion for quality, innovation, and spreading the joy of art around the world. With these shared values, UNIQLO has sponsored UNIQLO Free Friday Nights since 2013, providing free access every Friday evening to the Museum’s renowned collection of modern art to more than 1.6 million visitors from around the world. In 2014, UNIQLO first launched ‘SPRZ NY’ (abbreviation for Surprise New York). The product line features ‘MoMA Special Edition’ designs which offers clothing and accessories inspired by artists from the MoMA collection such as Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Yayoi Kusama. UNIQLO continues to launch new ‘MoMA Special Edition’ designs throughout the year and sells them in UNIQLO stores and on uniqlo.com. Additionally, MoMA’s retail channels, including MoMA Design Store and store.moma.org, sell select ‘SPRZ NY’ products.

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2006 BCA 10 Winner, The Star-Telegram, Opens Minds and Hearts to the Arts in North Texas

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2006 BCA 10 Winner, The Star-Telegram, Opens Minds and Hearts to the Arts in North Texas

Amon G. Carter Sr. established The Star-Telegram, a Fort Worth, Texas based newspaper, nearly a century ago on the notion that public service is necessary for any newspaper that wants to make life better for those it serves.

 

The Star-Telegram has been supporting the arts as far back as the Texas Centennial in 1936 when Amon Carter hired noted Broadway producer, Billy Rose, to produce a 100-day extravaganza, starring Sally Rand and other famous vaudevillians of the day. The Star-Telegram underwrote $65,000 of the funds needed and led the campaign to raise the remaining balance. The organization also promoted a show that drew more than two million individuals to Fort Worth. This marked the beginning of the Casa Mañana Theatre, one of the first theaters-in-the-round in the country, that still presents professional theater performances.

 

Upon announcement of the company’s acknowledgement as a BCA 10 awardee in 2006,   

Wesley R. Turner, former President and Publisher of The Star-Telegram, cited Amon G. Carter’s beliefs and the organization’s interest in continuing this legacy. “ ‘A man cannot live off his community.  He must live with it.’  He believed that the arts improved the quality of living for all and I count it a pleasure to continue that tradition.”

 

The Star-Telegram lives up to Carter’s ideals today by offering readers feature stories about national and international arts events to pique interest, invite participation and broaden horizons.

 

The Star-Telegram’s Arts & Culture section raises awareness on issues such as the latest developments in Texas arts funding, as well as advocates for the arts at large with special writings covering North Texas’ thriving creative sector. The newspaper is a mouth piece for promoting the arts and creative economywithin North Texas with thoughtful opinion articles penned by board members and leaders from organizations such as the Texas Cultural Trust and the Texas Commission on the Arts, which shed light into the concerns of the arts community, as well as news on upcoming resources and events for artists and art lovers. The company even highlights the voices of pro-arts Texan senators, mayors and other elected officials on topics of key concern to the creative community as well.

 

However, thought leadership and news coverage are just a few of the many areas in which The Star-Telegram contributes to the local community.

 

The Star-Telegram also provides advertising to major museums and festivals to promote the activities of their groups and to celebrate cultural heritage and diversity. Among those institutions that have received complimentary advertising space and cash contributions are the Kimbell Art Museum, Amon Carter Museum, Modern Arts Museum, National Cowgirl Museum, Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, Arlington Museum of Art, the Main St. Arts Festival, Jazz by the Boulevard, Cinco De Mayo, Gran Fiesta Fort Worth, Mayfest, the Red Steagall Cowboy Gathering, Theatre Arlington, Creative Arts Theatre and School, UTA Theatre Arts program, UTA EXCEL program, Arlington Arts League, Dance Theatre of Arlington, Symphony Arlington, Metropolitan Classical Ballet (formerly Ballet Arlington), and Arlington Choral Society.

 

In addition, The Star-Telegram offers grant support to a plethora of arts groups in its community such as the Fort Worth Symphony, Fort Worth Opera, Texas Ballet Theatre and the Van Cliburn Foundation. 

 

Photo: Photograph of Artist, Brian Donnelly (KAWS) at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth prior to the opening of the “KAWS: Where the End Starts” exhibit. Image sourced from the Star-Telegram and Paul Moseley (pmoseley@star-telegram.com)

2008 BCA 10 Winner, First Tennessee Bank, Supports Community Unity with Fun Fest

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First Tennessee Bank is a staunch believer that art plays a vital role in a healthy community, and helps express the diversity within its shared humanity.

For this reason, First Tennessee Bank continues to give back to its state by financially supporting community togetherness as a sponsor of the Fun Fest in Kingsport, Tennessee.

 

Established fall of 1980, Fun Fest was started with the aim of healing the community from pressing situations that divided it, “ranging from political issues to extreme and unhealthy rivalries among local high schools,” according to event organizers.

 

Founders stated that the sole objective of Fun Fest was "to promote unity, harmony, fellowship and cooperation among people in the greater Kingsport area” – essentially fostering a belief that the Kingsport community was a good place to live and work while appealing to interests in culture, athletics, arts and entertainment.

 

Fun Fest was designed to build a more positive attitude about the local community and a more friendly, neighborly relationship amongst residents, and it appears to have been successful in doing so.

 

Over the years, the event has grown to attract over 180,000 attendees annually and has activities ranging from art fairs to boat races, parades and car shows that appeal to all age groups and people of varying interest. Nothing promotes community togetherness like live performance - Fun Fest concerts have featured performers such as Billy Ray Cyrus, The Four Tops, The Pointer Sisters, KC & The Sunshine Band, and Lynyrd Skynrd. 

 

In addition to live performance, the event features the Kingsport Art Guild’s Fun Fest Art Show, a community art show inviting both children and adults to hone and share their creative talents.

 

The spirit of building togetherness continues through the Fun Fest Art Show, as the 80 participants in the 2017 show reveal the diverse array of talent and skill collectively housed and supported within the community. 

 

“The diversity in these entries was most impressive. I can see artists exploring different paths. The skills and wit evident in a great many of the works made it difficult to narrow down the award winners,” according to Tim Tate, a retired teaching artist from the Sullivan County School System who served as judge.

 

Fun Fest continues into the present with the help of its local supporters and constituents, such as First Tennessee Bank.

 

For over 100 years, First Tennessee has been a strong supporter of the arts. It believes the arts elevate the human spirit and strengthen the fabric of the community.

When the Memphis-based bank expanded its operations statewide nearly 40 years ago, it started the First Tennessee Heritage Collection, an art collection about Tennessee by Tennesseans. The collection celebrates and acknowledges the heritage and history of the region.

 

First Tennessee, a 2008 BCA 10 awardee, is proud of its commitment to share the arts with employees, customers, and the communities it serves.

 

Photo: Anne Bucher, participant in the 2017 Fun Fest Art Show, receives a Best in Show award for her painting ‘Polly.’ Image sourced from Times News.

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BCA10 Awardee Adobe Systems on Non-conventional Ways the Arts Matter to Business

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Creativity is pivotal to business, but not for the reasons you might first expect.

 

When walking through Adobe’s headquarters in San José California, the home of over Adobe 2,000 employees, one cannot help but notice its striking art and design. From renovated spaces to unique art installations, the headquarters are visually inspiring for the many different types of workers that inhabit the space.

 

 

Researchers have been touting the importance of aesthetically pleasing work environments for years, given they create a more welcoming place for collaboration, focus and mental clarity.

 

But workplace décor alone merely scratches the surface of what the arts offer businesses.  

 

State of Create: 2016, an Adobe initiated research report benchmarking how workers hailing from the U.K., France, Germany, Japan and the United States view creativity, raises some food for thought on how else the arts benefit businesses.  

 

First of all, the arts stimulate creativity, and according to Adobe’s research, creativity pays.

 

Did you know that the study’s self-ascribed creators report more house hold income than non-creators? On average, creators report making 13 percent more than non-creators.

 

There are intangible benefits to executing creativity within the workplace as well.

 

Workers that considered themselves to be creators not only view themselves as more creative, but were significantly more likely to report feeling happy, innovative, confident, energized and successful. The also felt they were making more of a difference in their work.

 

Yet the issue becomes, how do companies create a culture that stimulates the success of all of its employees by empowering them to be creative thinkers, or creators?

 

According to the State of Create: 2016, only 41 percent of people describe themselves as creative. Around the world only 31 percent of people believe they are living up to their full creative potential.

 

This means the majority of the workforce has yet to be fully engaged and activated at work – contributing their best and brightest ideas to improving teams, products, and workflows.

 

The source of the issue could be that workplaces ask for employees to be creative, but do not create mechanisms for enabling creativity to flourish.  Reason being, 77 percent of State of Create: 2016 respondents agreed that there is an increasing pressure to be productive, rather than creative at work.

 

There appears to be a workplace void in what employers want versus what they can organically cultivate within employees. This is a void that only the arts, when working alongside business partners, can fill.

 

The pARTnership site Success Stories page is filled with examples of how small, medium and large companies from a variety of industries have attempted to open the door to creative outcomes in their employees by partnering with arts organizations.  

 

Take for instance, the story of 2009 BCA10 Awardee, Adobe Systems.

 

Adobe exposes workers to the arts through offering skilled volunteer opportunities with local arts organizations. Adobe designers recently created book covers for teenage writers via a partnership with Open Books, helping to boost the students confidence and marketability.

 

In addition to external projects, Adobe feeds creativity with regular employee art contests. The business displays this work in corporate offices. The engagement level of their activities is worth noting – over 85 employees participated in the company’s photography exhibit in the San Francisco office.

 

Want to learn more about success stories in blending together arts and business? Visit the pARTnership Movement Success Story page.

 

Photo: Curated by Antlre Creative and created in partnership with Adobe audio and visual employees, this work of art is a visualization of an Adobe employee’s voice.

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Brand Building with the Arts: BACARDÍ and Major Lazer Partner to Support Caribbean Musical Talent

Posted by Mariama Holman
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According to the global head of music at BACARDÍ, Liz Walaszczyk, “Every brand wants to have a place in music.”

 

2013 BCA 10 winner BACARDÍ is an enduring brand with a 153 year old history, surviving Prohibition and on top of that, an exile from Cuba. Since its “BACARDÍ Untameable Since 1862” campaign in 2015, the brand has pivoted back into pop-culture cool by focusing on music. It actively targeted millennials by hosting mobile house parties in Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Atlanta and Miami, all the while partnering with musicians like hip-hop duo, Run the Jewels, to highlight their latest projects.

 

Working with an annual budget of approximately $50 million, over time BACARDÍ has created marketing clout at social events through executing global festivals with partners like Major Lazer.

 

Major Lazer’s sound, production and live performance quality made the group a natural partner for BACARDÍ. From the start, Major Lazer has operated under the premise that pop music is a truly global phenomenon, blending a unique mix of Afrobeat, EDM and dancehall that pulls in fans from Lagos, Nigeria to Los Angeles, fueling cultural earthquakes of sound and texture. This is perfect for BACARDÍ, who is seeking to attract consumers across the world and honor its cultural mishmash at the same time.

 

The newly formed Music Liberates Music BACARDÍ and Major Lazer collaboration gives free studio time to rising Caribbean artists, working to support and create a future for the legacy of Caribbean beats, rhythms and tunes that inspired the band and many other music lovers around the world. 

 

As a part of Music Liberates Music, BACARDÍ has pledged to contribute studio time to aspiring artists each time a specific song by Major Lazer, “Front of the Line,” plays on Spotify.

 

Artists to benefit from the program include Shokryme (Jamaica), Mystic Davis (Jamaica), Triple Kay (Dominica), Shanta Prince (Barbados), Dynamite (St. Vincent), Mula (St. Vincent), Bridgetown (Barbados), Ricky T (Castries) and Cohoba (Dominican Republic).

 

  

 

 

How it works? For every 50 plays of Major Lazer’s “Front of the Line” on Spotify, BACARDÍ will donate one second of studio time. One hundred and eighty thousand plays would create an hour of studio time. While this might seem daunting at first, Major Lazer’s hit list has achieved more than 40 million plays with seven Billboard Hot 100 hits such as “Lean On” with DJ Snake with over 2 billion YouTube plays and “Cold Water” featuring Justin Bieber and MØ.

 

“Front of the Line” is the band’s latest dance hall single, featuring Machel Montano, the Trinidadian soca star, and Konshens, the hitmaking Jamaican dancehall artist. Upon logging into the Music Liberates Music landing page, one can see a countdown of total plays for the song. As of July 5th, the song already has created over 79 studio hours for the 9 artists.

 

 

 

Photos and Video: BACARDÍ

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Announcing the 2017 BCA Leadership Award and BCA pARTnership Award Honorees

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Americans for the Arts is pleased to announce the BCA Leadership Award and the *new* BCA pARTnership Award honorees for 2017.  The awards are presented annually by the Business Committee for the Arts (BCA), a division of Americans for the Arts.

 

UNIQLO, casual wear designer, manufacturer and retailer, and The Museum of Modern Art, the foremost museum of modern art in the world, will receive the new 2017 BCA pARTnership Award which recognizes a company and an arts organization for an exceptional project, program, or initiative that represents a true alliance, collaboration, or exchange between the two.

 

 

 

Raymond J. McGuire, Global Head of Corporate & Investment Banking of Citi, will receive the 2017 BCA Leadership Award, which recognizes an individual for his/her extraordinary vision, leadership, and commitment to supporting the arts and for encouraging other businesses to follow in his/her lead.

 

 

The honorees will receive their awards at the BCA 10: Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts in America gala on October 11, 2017, a black-tie affair at the Loeb Boathouse in New York City’s Central Park.

 

For more information on tickets and ads, contact bca@artsusa.org

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Former Bank of America Executive Vice President, Walter B. Elcock, says the arts build managerial skills

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Former Bank of America Executive Vice President, Walter B. Elcock, says the arts build managerial skills

According to Walter B. Elcock, former Executive Vice President of the BCA 10 awarded Bank of America and current President of the Dallas Museum of Art, regularly attending art events gives aspiring managers a competitive advantage

 

Elcock began his career studying studio art at the University of North Texas, but transferred to the world of finance after the birth of his first child. He states that the practice of continually engaging the arts from college through his working adult life developed key traits that helped him quickly climb the corporate ladder – rising from management trainee to EVP.

 

Over time, it became apparent to me that my learning and continuing experiences in the arts were significantly influencing my professional development as an employee, and then more so as an executive. Traits considered critical to corporate analysis and decision-making were forcefully illustrated to me through the arts: curiosity, creativity, fearlessness and perseverance.”

 

Engaging visual art exhibitions developed interpersonal skills crucial for Elcock’s advancement into executive leadership roles - teaching him how to improve the dynamics between himself, fellow employees, vendors and clients.

 

Great art will challenge your assumptions of the world and your perception of your place in it. A moving performance will force you to reconcile your emotions with your logic and that can be quite a threat. The reward, however, is significant. For me, I learned to listen more intently and to look at a problem through new eyes. That helped me solve my customer's problems more effectively and build better work relationships.

 

The skill Elcock developed via the arts is known as decentering, a trait the Harvard Business Review claims is crucial for managing workplace relationships.

 

Decentering involves taking a figurative step back from one’s beliefs and thoughts, observing a problem from a neutral stand-point and considering alternative points of view.

 

The Harvard Business Review (HBR) states that decentering is critical for inspiring and motivating others. The skill creates leaders that are better positioned for creating strong teams – seeing people not as problems, but puzzles.   

 

The manager needs to look at the employee not as a problem to be solved but as a person to be understood.” – Harvard Business Review

 

How to cultivate decentering in your organization via the arts

 

In analyzing performance or visual arts, one seeks to observe, understand and then interpret the intentions behind a body of work.

  • What was the artists’ motivation?
  • What action (or inaction) were they seeking to inspire?
  • How does this work fit into the large theme of what has been created?

 

If you think these questions look like they came directly from art history class you would be correct.

 

Per Elcock’s example, when applied to the business world, this same analysis framework creates managers that are more in tune to the people and situations around them.

 

Reason being, studying one’s employees, clients and vendors just as intently as an artist or critic would research and analyze a body of work leads to a greater appreciation of the motivations and driving-factors impacting their behaviors.

 

Adapt the questions above to your business institution by replacing artist with the appropriate stakeholder, whether an employee, client or third-party vendor. Need help creating and executing a framework? Partner with a local arts organization to offer employees experiences that foster decentering and create stronger teams within your business.

 

Photo Credit: Dallas Museum of Art, Twitter May 28th, 2017  

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