Performing ArtsFront and Center for Students
Partnerships enrich more than 8,000 children in Lake Norman area through dance, theater, and music.
The Cain Center for the Arts is making an impact on the Lake Norman region and it hasn’t opened its doors yet.
Through an educational outreach program which launched in January and wrapped up in May, the startup community organization brought the arts to more than 8,000 K-12 students in 26 schools in north Mecklenburg, south Iredell, east Lincoln and west Cabarrus counties.
The nonprofit Cain Center for the Arts was established in 2017 and is the midst of a $25 million capital campaign to fund construction of the center, which will be built on Catawba Avenue, across from Cornelius Town Hall.
While fundraising continues (the campaign is more than half way to its goal), the Cain Center partnered with well-known Charlotte arts organizations such as Charlotte Ballet, Charlotte Symphony and Children’s Theatre of Charlotte to bring performing arts to students.
“Our goal was to present high quality art programs through partnering with established organizations,” says Justin Dionne, executive director of the Cain Center. “We see this outreach as a flagship program for our organization.”
The program was a smashing success, Dionne says. “We had a very positive response from students, teachers, and parents. Principals have sent letters acknowledging the impact of the programs.”
For some students, the close interaction with the arts can be life changing.
“For many children who see live theatre in their school, it is the first time they are seeing themselves in a creative way,” says Margot Parrott, Children’s Theatre of Charlotte touring performance coordinator. “To watch that lightbulb turn on is nothing short of pure joy.”
The Cain Center hopes to launch a second installment of the program in spring of 2020, and is actively looking for sponsors. Allen Tate Realtors and the Rotary Club of North Mecklenburg have already signed on to support the next season.
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