Race, Identity and Culture Explored at Free Noontime Forum

Race, Identity and Culture Explored at Free Noontime ForumA special noontime forum exploring cultural identity, strength, tension and celebration, Race, Identity and Culture in the Pacific Northwest, features a panel of artists, activists and historians in moderated discussion, 12 p.m. - 2 p.m., Friday, June 16, in the Simons Board Room at Seattle Art Museum. Seattle Center and Seattle Public Library will present the discussion in conjunction with the 20th anniversary year of Seattle Center Festál.

A diverse panel will address race, identity and culture in relation to celebration and influence in the broader community. What role do ethnic gatherings have in strengthening identity? Why are these celebrations important? How does equity play out within a multi-ethnic environment? Why is language important? What elements can be used to engage young people, those who ultimately will reimagine and carry the culture into the future? Angela Russell, a noted journalist, screenwriter, and communications consultant, will moderate the discussion with the following panel members:

  • Award-winning author, teacher and screenwriter Ramon Isao, recipient of Artist Trust and Jack Straw Cultural Center writing fellowships and the Tim McGinnis Award for Fiction;
  • Choreographer and dancer, founder and director of Filipinas Performing Arts of Washington State, and well-known local and national Filipina activist, Juliet Omli Cawas Cheatle;
  • Former recording artist and radio host, well known auctioneer and executive director of Festa Italiana Seattle since 1993, Dennis Caldirola.

In 2017, Seattle Center Festál celebrates 20 years of global music, dance, art, crafts, history, food and insight presented through a unique partnership among community organizations and Seattle Center. Festál provides a stage and platform for them to share their traditions, accomplishments and artistic expression. Festál events captivate and enlighten festival-goers as they experience the distinct cultures that shape the character and course of our broader community.

Race, Identity and Culture in the Pacific Northwest is free and open to the public. Seating is on a first come basis. Seattle Center Festál is a program of Seattle Center Productions. For more information on this collection of ethnic cultural events and other Seattle Center public programming, visit www.seattlecenter.com or call 206-684-7200.

This illuminating series of 24 ethnic cultural festivals on weekends throughout the year seeks to connect people in ways that build understanding, dispel stereotypes and generate pride among the generations who participate in these shared experiences. Seattle Center Festál is produced with the generous support of KUOW 94.9 Public Radio, Coca-Cola, Alaska Airlines, T-Mobile, Wells Fargo, The Boeing Company, NW Folklife, 4Culture and ArtsWA. Additional support is provided by the City of Seattle and Seattle Center Foundation.

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