A DREAM FULFILLED: State-of-the-art facility for the arts in Hill District is now open – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 2022-08-05 10:55:57 –

tian battle, On July 22nd, the Kauffman Center on Center Avenue in the Hill District is a place where people, especially young people, can learn about the arts and other programs. (Photo by Rob Taylor Jr.)

Inside, African-American students put their acting skills to the test, practicing performances with props, lighting, and music.

Outside, the ribbon was cut to celebrate the $4 million expansion and renovation of the Kauffman Center in the heart of the Hill District, where art is king.

Founder of ACH Clear Pathways, an organization founded in honor of her late son, Amon C. Harris, Tian Battle was in awe of all who showed up for the occasion. But the people, elected officials, and residents all knew how important it was to have state-of-the-art buildings for the arts of the young.

Bill Strickland, Tian Battle, Franco Harris, Roger Humphries (Photo by Rob Taylor Jr.)

“I don’t know about all of you, but when I was younger, I wasn’t exposed to art or music or painting,” Senator Wayne Fontana said at the grand opening on July 22nd. “This community, and the young people here, can be that way. prize.”

Senator Fontana added:

Battle says her son loves martial arts and provides children with martial arts, theater, acting, dance, music, poetry, digital media and more through ACH Clear Pathways. ACH Clear Pathways purchased the Kauffman Center next to the Hill House on Center Avenue in 2020, a landmark move at the time to expand the center by approximately 2,700 square feet for digital media studios, art studios, and other facilities. did the work. A ramp is included for those who don’t want to walk the “Rocky (movie) stairs” Battle called.

Many speakers at the ribbon-cutting ceremony spoke of Battle’s vision of the Kauffman Center. This also includes its extensions. Senator Fontana didn’t see it at first. Others had no idea how she would be able to raise the funds for the expansion.

Jake Wheatley, now Mayor Ed Gainey’s Chief of Staff, praised Tian’s battle for her tireless efforts to bring the Kauffman Center expansion to fruition. (Photo by Rob Taylor Jr.)

Jake Wheatley, Mayor Ed Gainey’s Chief of Staff, said at the event that Battle’s dream “wasn’t easy to make happen.”

Early in the process, Battle felt he was getting “detours” from people regarding funding the expansion of the Kauffman Center. Wheatley, who served as state representative for the Hill District for nearly 20 years, said: So no trauma they carry can stop you from dreaming what you want to do. ”

Wheatley said Battle took that to heart.

“This is someone (Battle) who had a dream and made that dream a reality,” Wheatley continued. told the audience. “She had no money, she had no political connections, but she had a lot of people who believed in her spirit.”

Tian’s Battle with the Macedonian Church of Pittsburgh Senior Pastor Brian J. Edmonds.

For parents like Wheatley, the Kauffman Center is located in the backyard, a dedicated art space for young people. Studies show that exposing a young person to something new often leads that child to have a vested interest in it. The student is less likely to spend their free time on negative activities and more time on their new hobby. The student may even make the hobby his profession. Battle told Courier that you never know who is currently a student in the program, or who in the future could be the next George Benson or August Wilson.

“As working parents, we need a place where we have people who care for our children during the summer, understand their situation, and keep them in touch positively,” Wheatley said.

The original expansion cost was $1.5 million, but it ballooned to $4 million. The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development supported the expansion with $2 million in funding.

ACH’s collaboration with Pittsburgh youth at the July 22nd event was amazing. “Tian and her team have spread a love of art to many children who otherwise would not have access to dance studios, musical instruments, etc. But it is not just about creating art. The arts are an integral part of the Hill District’s rich history, and ACH Clear Pathway brings that history into the present.Instilling a passion for the arts in young people By doing so, we will also lead art into the future.”

Terry Baltimore to speak at ribbon cutting on July 22nd…

“Today feels like history,” Battle told the New Pittsburgh Courier at the ribbon cutting. They could have chosen anyone, but they chose ACH.

Representative Aelion Abney of the constituency that includes Hill was also present. He also believes the refurbished Kauffman Center will be a big plus for the community and young people. But both Abney and Buttle pointed out that the artistic programming taught at the Kauffman Center would soon be open to the elderly.

People don’t need art experience to get into programming, Battle said.

“This is where it all starts,” she said.

After the ribbon was cut, people began lining up at the Kauffman Center, and some were surprised to see children practice their performance at the Elsie Hillman Auditorium. Edmonds toured multiple floors of the Kauffman Center with Battle.

“This is a dream come true through faith,” he told Courier. I think Tayan embodies that, and this center is the picture where that can really happen.”

A DREAM FULFILLED: State-of-the-art facility for the arts in Hill District is now open Source link A DREAM FULFILLED: State-of-the-art facility for the arts in Hill District is now open

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