Opinion: 6 Reasons Why The Rochester Arts Scene Is Growing
Over the past year-and-a-half, I've noticed several conversations about the "lack" of art appreciation or "art-related" events in the city. I completely disagree with that notion. Sure, most of these announcements are made via social media - but they do exist.
I won't deny that loss of venues and change in management/programming for several local organizations has caused some in Rochester to feel like its arts scene is ignored. Whether you can physically see it or not, I'm here to inform you that this scene is taking ownership of that issue - and (for lack of better term) turning lemons into lemonade.
Here are six reasons why the arts are growing in prominence and visibility in Rochester.
- People like Chad Allen. As a member of Gallery 24, and art fan in general, Chad regularly hosts numerous art-related events at the gallery. In his personal time, he regularly posts "weekend updates" on whats happening musically and artistically in Rochester. If there's an artsy event going on in Rochester, I guarantee you that he posted about it first.
- People like Mike Terrill. Need a guitarist for anything and everything in Rochester - no matter what genre of music? I guarantee you that at the very least Mike Terrill (of Second Story) will take on the job for fun (if nothing else) when he can. He's just that passionate about music. He's not just playing in his own band, he's playing for countless bands and events in the area (as needed) too - just to see Rochester's continued musical success.
- We're creating our own venues. Foster Fest, Gallery 24, Pure Rock Studios and Collider are prime local examples of giving someone space to create and entertain.
- People like Tyler Aug. We know him as "Aug", but you know him from the countless Rochester videos he's produced. He's worked on every type of local video from music videos to promos and teasers for various Rochester events. His talent speaks for itself by his ability to make each item he's working on look fun and paced with high energy.
- Businesses are partnering up. It's mutually beneficial, so why not? I regularly see businesses permitting bands to sell tickets (for their shows) at their location to boost visibility for upcoming concerts. I also see Cafe Steam and Gallery 24 cross-promoting events.
- People like John Sievers. Our favorite person on trombone has received many community awards for being an arts advocate. He plays trombone for the fun of it most anywhere in town. He even uses his personal Facebook page to promote any Rochester business by wearing their t-shirt!
The whole reason I felt like writing this blog was because of what I saw at Gallery 24 over the weekend. On Saturday night, we "calmed the eff down" and had tea, meditation, and music. It's such an original event that I can't say I've been to anything like it before. It was created by (and for) Rochester, truly.
A funny observation that I made was that most of the room knew each other purely from social media. We all met in person (finally!) simply because we have a mutual love of the arts and started sharing those posts/info.
It's a strong bond, and I'm fascinated to see it grow!