Entries Tagged 'Art' ↓

Former Sioux Falls Comedian Sean Jordan debuts on the James Corden Show

It’s been years since I have seen Sean, but I remember him from the early days and bouts at the Roller Dollz events. He has really honed his skills. He lives in LA now.

UPDATE: Levitt Sioux Falls had a stellar 2022 season, still wondering what happened in 2021

UPDATE: I wanted to note that ALL the arts non-profits in Sioux Falls that receive city taxpayer funding should be giving the public their full financials each year. I was told today that the Pavilion hasn’t done this for a long time. One of the reasons is that they are rumored to have millions in endowment and savings (not under the city umbrella but under the management company) which means if the management company was ever terminated they would take the money with them.

I will admit, putting on 50 FREE outdoor concerts in SoDak and not having one single cancellation is quite an accomplishment. I also enjoyed seeing Lee Rocker from the Stray Cats (pics below) for the finale.

But after wrapping up a successful 2022 season, the Levitt has yet to tell us the financials from last year’s season. I find this even more ironic considering the Director of Levitt, Nancy Halverson ripped the city council a new one at the last meeting (they deserved it) for wanting to contract the Pavilion to do an arts study and running the municipal duties of the arts in Sioux Falls. Nancy stated that it was a huge conflict of interest since the Pavilion already receives arts funding from taxpayers. It is. But has that ever stopped the Pavilion before?

First off, government needs to stay out of the planning and implementation of arts programming in the city and just cut the checks.

Secondly, it is easy to complain about different organizations when you have hardly been transparent.

ALL of the arts programs and arts non-profits we have partnerships with should do a very public presentation of their annual reports in a very timely manner.

Is there any reason why we have never seen a 2021 annual report from the Levitt? It’s almost October 2022.

While they all want taxpayer money, they seem to struggle with telling us how that money is being spent. I’m all for my tax dollars going towards the arts and I have had incredible experiences at the Levitt, who have a dedicated staff that goes above and beyond, and a director that knows her sh!t!

If any thing, they ALL have conflicts of interest if they can’t tell us the financials.

The brother and sisterhood we have with our arts community is essential, but that love and trust comes from telling us where our money is going towards. It’s NOT a heavy lift.

Mayor TenHaken is proposing full time art person

This story has been circulating for awhile and there has been some pushback from councilors. This is the best explanation of what the position would be;

The position, as recommended by the arts task force, is a professional arts administrator. It is not a clerical position. The city would seek someone who understands nonprofit management and finances, facility needs and management, public art preservation and maintenance.  They would also be able to increase funding from outside sources through grants from private foundations and the state and federal government. Sioux Falls is ready and in need of this kind of leadership.

While I clearly understand WHY they may think they need this position, this argument isn’t exactly convincing;

As in all industries, there are politics internally that sometimes prevent partnerships or collaborations. Cultural groups are no different.  This is one of the reasons why a city position is much more effective and efficient than jobbing this out to another arts group.  As Jeff Eckoff said, without great expense, the city can convene and develop policies that promote and encourage collaborations and give attention to the creative sector including individuals and smaller organizations.  Nonprofit arts organization are businesses focused on staying solvent through a sale of a product. They are not service organizations concerned with the values of government such as transparency, equity, effectiveness and efficiency.  They are also not accountable to taxpayers and all citizens. Based on the task force’s work, there is great need for leadership from the city to bring about cohesiveness and collaboration.

I would agree the city does need consultation, but would argue using an outside consultant would be much more cost effective then a permanent position and with the track record the city has on transparency I worry having an internal arts consultant would actually hamper the work arts organizations are doing in our community. Just look at the contracts we have with the Pavilion and the Denty. The city doesn’t have internal employees telling them what to do, and we shouldn’t. We rely on their expertise to run these facilities without undue influence from the administration.

I do support a long term city arts plan, but this cannot be done with another bureaucrat on the city’s pay roll it has to be done with private consultation from experts in the field and would suggest a study would be a better investment.

As someone who used to be extensively involved with the arts community I can tell you much more is being accomplished by the private sector and we need to keep government out of our studios.

*While there is absolutely NOTHING on the agenda explaining adding this position, it falls under Item #60 which is the 2023 city budget resolution. I also suspect that ‘someone’ is angling for this job, I will leave it at that.

NEW Downtown Sioux Falls Mural while wonderful, mostly hidden from view

I was a little disappointed today when I viewed the new bird mural, it is mostly hidden from full view due to the viaduct;

It is also clearly inspired by street artist genius Bansky. “Good artists copy; great artists steal.” – Pablo Picasso

Mayor TenHaken’s Budget Address

During his address today there were a couple of interesting tidbits;

• He is proposing hiring an Art Specialist. He didn’t give many details but it sounded like a full time position. While I am somewhat supportive, (I think this idea has been floated by Mayor Huether and maybe even Mayor Munson) as someone said to me tonight, it seems like more of an authoritarian move to control the arts advancement in Sioux Falls (tourism). Not sure if I see that, so I will keep an open mind about the job duties. I think this will be a controversial addition and there may be dissenters on the council. I remember when TenHaken asked for a cultural officer and she quit. He may have a fight on his hands.

• Paul said there will be an announcement soon about a TIF being granted for an affordable housing project. Like the Art Specialist there were few details. I have felt that TIFs for affordable housing is a reasonable use of them, but I want to see if the TIF will benefit the dwellers or the developers.

While the meeting WAS posted in advanced on the city website, the PPT was not included. When the meeting started there was NO link to the live feed on the city website for at least 10 minutes at the beginning. Fortunately, Dakotanews was streaming the meeting on FB with their own cameras. I just find it ironic that Mr. TechNology was so concerned about his PPT being posted in advance they had to delay the live feed so it would NOT appear until after the meeting started.

Innoskate Sioux Falls!

This is a great event for Sioux Falls, and I would like to thank Nancy Halverson from the Levitt for organizing the event. Tons of skate demonstrations, talks, art, food, and MUSIC!

Buy Art, Help People

My weirdo pieces;

Why is the Washington Pavilion hosting a show that promotes a cult?

I got an email from a foot soldier a few weeks ago, but didn’t think much of it;

I received a mailer about something called “Shen Yun: China before Communisim”. This is a stage shown produced by the Falun Gong religious movement, who is more well known for their pro-Trump rag The Epoch Times. They are going to put on one of these Shen Yun performances at the Washington Pavilion on January 26th. I wonder if this is worthy of a blog post as a SF government organization is allowing a pro-Trump religious movement to host a show at the Pavilion.

I responded;

I get it, and would agree this is a POS show, but the Pavilion is ran by a private non-profit even if it does get subsidies from the city they can basically put on any governmental or religious show and have over the years. You also have to realize the place is ran by a person who only cares about cashing in and making money.

As I mentioned above, there is little stopping the Washington Bazillion from putting on the show, and Holy Sh!t it is expensive. I guess cults don’t get money from trees.

If you don’t know much about the Falun Dafa Cult they seem to revel in being anti-socialism, anti-gay, anti-atheist, anti-premarital sex and and anti-science all rolled into a big old barrel of monkeys. Wait, I think I just described our governor’s agenda.

Secretly I am actually thinking about going just so I can laugh at the end when the Karl Marx character ruins all the fun. But I am also NOT a fan of putting my money in a burn barrel.

I encourage anyone thinking about going to NOT go and if you already have purchased tickets to ask for a refund siting you don’t wish to support a cult. I sometimes wonder whoever is booking the shows over there even bothers to do a little research. It reminds of how they didn’t book Lucinda Williams (about a month before she won a Grammy) because they didn’t think they could fill the seats or how they canceled negotiations with Hank the III because he wouldn’t promise to do all old timey music sets.

But a Chinese cult ballet for $180 a ticket? That’s A okay.

Concert Cancellation could be a lesson in Economic Impact

While I understand peeps frustration in Stapleton cancelling his show last night (he really could have done it earlier in the day) I really think this could be a lesson in local economic impact. As we know, the Denty hasn’t really helped the economy in Sioux Falls that much, in fact it is a drain of over $10 million a year to taxpayers, money that could be spent on needed infrastructure instead. As I have said before, besides the little bit of tax revenue we draw from the place each year, almost 100% of the money that is spent at the facility goes straight down the highway. The promoters, management companies (beverage and food included) and the artists get the lion’s share and take it straight out of town. Very little gets recirculated in the community.

But last night, I saw something amazing in DTSF. The streets were filled with flannel wearing, boot scootin’ concert goers that were stuck in town for the night without a show to go to. They were spending the money they intended to throw away at the Denty in our town at local businesses instead of to a corporate giant.

It would be interesting to see what the sales tax boost to the city was from last night.

One of the main reasons I opposed the Denty, wasn’t because of the price tag, it was because it would not benefit local business. When people are dropping $400 per person in one night (tickets, beverages, taxi, hotel, etc.) basically in one place, they have blown their entertainment budget for several months and not spending it locally.

I remember a time around 10-15 years ago when you had oodles of options to see live music and entertainment at a host of different venues. And not just local yocals but National and Regional acts. The money spent got recirculated in our community.

Let us learn from this incident.

Box Art!

Love this program. I will confess I had friends who participated and are in the exhibit encourage me to be in it and I think I said, ‘Meh’ and some other dirty words. That doesn’t mean I don’t like it. Good stuff;