The International Festival of Arts and Ideas
New Haven can be a wonderful place to spend
the summer. The campus quiets down, but
that doesn't mean that the activities stop.
In fact, one of New Haven's
most famous events, the International Festival of Arts and Ideas takes place in
June. The Festival's main stage on the
New Haven Green features days of free performances that turn out the local
community. Performances are also held at
theaters throughout New Haven and the concerts
come right up to our doorstep here at the Law School,
with the courtyard providing an intimate venue for a night of music. (Check
out the pictures below!)
The International Festival of Arts
and Ideas just celebrated its fourteenth year, and has become renowned as one
of the world's most significant arts festivals. The Festival is a global event in New Haven. Each summer, the Festival showcases hundreds
of international artists and speakers from over 75 countries in a broad array
of genres. The Festival brings U.S. premieres to New Haven, operas to the Green,
internationally recognized names and dynamic, emerging, local artists to a new
audience. And to top it all, much of the
Festival programming is free.
The 2009 Festival, themed Global
Identities/Local Heroes, featured performances by artists such as Jason Moran,
the Barabbas Theater Company and the Mark Morris Dance Group. (Check out the NYT review of the Mark Morris
Dance Group performance here: www.nytimes.com/2009/06/27/arts/dance/27dido.html?pagewanted=all).
Mavis Staples and They Might be
Giants could be seen in free performances on the New Haven Green, along with
performances by local and international artists. The courtyard concert series brought alto
saxophonist Miguel Zenón, Tania Libertad, whose
singing blends the Afro-Peruvian tradition with many other styles, and the
international lyrical sound of Rupa & The April Fishes here to the Law School.
The Festival also
brings ideas to New Haven. From conversations about the Hidden Assault
on our Civil Rights and Confronting the Global Economic Crisis, to Food:
Pleasure, Policy and Public Health, this year's Festival brought together an
inspirational group of people from around the world to think about the
challenges facing us on a local and global level. Attendees also had the opportunity to
converse about the arts with novelist Frank McCourt, choreographer Mark Morris,
and soul singer Mavis Staples, among many others.
Food enthusiasts were able to tour
the kitchens of local restaurants and enjoy specialty dinners from the
chefs. I didn't sign up early enough,
but the Flavors from Iberia
to Latin America tour, featuring Ibiza, Soul
de Cuba and Geronimo sounded fantastic!
If you want to attend one of the dinners next year - be sure to sign up
To learn more about the Festival or
if you plan to be in the New Haven area next summer, keep a watch on the
Festival's website (www.artidea.org) for
the plans for June, 2010. Once the
schedule is announced, tickets for the more popular events go quickly - so sign
up if you see something you like. Or you
can always stop by the New Haven Green to catch one of the many free performances
taking place throughout the Festival.