Lively discussion to explore the role of culture, politics, and policy with world-renowned expert
November 12, 2019
PROVIDENCE, RI – Mayor Jorge O. Elorza and the Department of Art, Culture + Tourism today announced this year’s Annual Senator Claiborne Pell Lecture on Arts and Humanities titled “I Love the Night Life: Culture, Politics, and Policy After Dark.” The lecture will be held on Thursday, November 14 at 5:00 PM at the historic Bomes Theatre, located at 1017 Broad Street. The event is free and open to the public, but seating will be limited.
“We welcome Dr. Shain Shapiro to the City of Providence,” said Mayor Jorge Elorza. “As a champion for thriving cities and inclusive communities, this timely discussion will undoubtedly echo Senator Pell’s tremendous impact on the Creative Capital.
Honoring Rhode Island’s late United States Senator Claiborne Pell (1918-2009), this year’s Pell Lecture will focus on Providence’s flourishing night-time economy and ways to strengthen the city’s music ecosystem. Dr. Shain Shapiro (Sound Diplomacy) will provide the keynote address, followed by a panel discussion, moderated by Lizzie Araujo Haller (Providence Art, Culture + Tourism, Deputy Director), with Roz Raskin (recording artist), Anthony Santurri (co-owner, Colosseum Nightclub and Freeplay Bar Arcade Providence), Spocka Summa (recording artist, Co-Founder of Public), Tom Weyman (Director of Programming, Columbus Theatre), and Travis Escobar (Founding Executive Director, Millennial RI).
“Live music is an essential component of Providence’s cultural economy,” said Stephanie Fortunato, Director of the Department of Art, Culture + Tourism. “We are delighted to host international thought leader, Dr. Shain Shapiro, in conversation with local experts, to explore our challenges and opportunities.”
With a 15-year foundation in the music industry, Shapiro’s work with Sound Diplomacy has redefined the ways that live music and nightlife are understood as drivers of culture and economic development in cities across the globe.
Established in 2009, the Pell Lecture seeds critical conversations that build from Senator Pell’s vision for our nation, inviting Providence to come together to celebrate and share its communal histories of art, culture, and creativity. Previous Pell Lecture topics have spotlighted key aspects of the six community-wide goals outlined in Creative Providence: A Cultural Plan for the Creative Sector. Past guest speakers have included: Nina Sanchez, Carlton Turner, David Byrne, Donna Walker Kuhne, Maria Rosario-Jackson, Jason Schupbach, Arlene Goldbard, and Jeffreen Hayes.
The 2019 Senator Pell Lecture “I Love the Night Life: Culture, Politics, and Policy After Dark” is presented by the City of Providence Department of Art, Culture + Tourism, produced in collaboration with Bomes Theatre and with support from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Providence Tourism Council, and Graduate Providence.
Shain Shapiro, PhD is the Founder and CEO of Sound Diplomacy. Sound Diplomacy is the leading global advisor on growing music and night time economies in cities and places. He is also the co-founder of Music Cities Convention, the world’s largest event bringing together the music industry with city planners, developers, policy makers and executives. Through Sound Diplomacy, he has consulted in over 60 cities and countries, including developing the Cuban official music strategy for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. He delivered the first ever music presentation at a UN World Urban Forum and consulted at length with the Greater London Authority, including working on the development of London’s Night Czar and across the Mayor of London’s music policy. He has delivered a TEDx talk on the value of music to cities and spoken at the European Parliament, MIDEM, MIPIM, SXSW, Smart Cities Expo, and others. He is also an accomplished journalist, frequently contributing to CityMetric, CityLab and other outlets. Shain holds a PhD from the University of London and was one of the top 10 Creative Entrepreneurs in Britain in the British Council’s h100 list.
Roz Raskin is a writer, musician, community organizer, and teacher based in her hometown of Providence, Rhode Island. She currently serves as a board member and keyboard instructor for Girls Rock! Rhode Island, a non-profit organization that empowers youth through music and creativity. Roz toured for over ten years with her critically acclaimed art rock band, Roz and the Rice Cakes (Team Love Records), and can more recently be seen touring in her cosmic pop project, NOVA ONE (Community Records). Roz also curates safer musicians show spaces under the name SELF LUV and teaches songwriting and piano locally.
Anthony Santurri has spent 30 years in the night time economy as an employee and owner. He is co-owner Colosseum Nightclub Providence, a Pine Street venue celebrating its 10th anniversary, and Freeplay Bar Arcade Providence. Founder of the Providence Responsible nightlife organization, an organization established in 2011, Santurri sits on the Boards of Directors of both the Jewelry District Association and the Downtown Neighborhood Association. He has also served as a working member of the RI Traffic Safety Coalition.
Spocka Summa is an emerging creative director, curator, musician and visual artist based in Providence RI. Focusing his craft on providing opportunities to bring artists and the community together, Spocka builds platforms that encourage artists to engage with their audience in a more tangible way beyond their social media platforms. He has curated for PVDFest and he is the co-owner of Public Shop and gallery located in Olneyville. Spocka also curates several showcases and markets for up and coming artists around New England.
Tom Weyman is the Director of Programming at the Columbus Theatre in Providence, RI. He has worked to bring music, comedy, spoken word and film to the historic opera house since it re-opened in 2012. Weyman co-produced the One Providence Experience events at PVDFest in 2015 and 2016, and in 2008 started Supply & Demand Music, a record label and management company based in RI.
Travis Escobar is Project Manager in Public Policy at United Way of Rhode Island where he advocates on for issues in Housing and Education. A graduate of Rhode Island College, Escobar co-founded, and was the first Executive Director of, Millennial Rhode Island. Millennial Rhode Island is a generational network that focuses on inspiring and connecting millennials to live, work, and grow in the Ocean State. Escobar also sits on the board of the Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless, the Rhode Island College Foundation and was recently appointed to the Providence School Board by Mayor Jorge Elorza.
ABOUT THE DEPARTMENT OF ART, CULTURE + TOURISM
The Department of Art, Culture + Tourism (AC+T) ensures the continued development of a vibrant and creative city by integrating arts and culture into community life while showcasing Providence as an international cultural destination. The Department works to support, engage, and encourage the creative sector’s participation in civic life.