ARTS FIRST: The most incredible arts weekend of the year!



Dear Harvard College Students,

I want to take a moment to call your attention to an extraordinary four-day event coming up this week: the 25th Anniversary of the ARTS FIRST Festival. Nearly 2,000 students and faculty will be performing in the festival from Thursday to Sunday, April 27-30, and the range of talent and variety of forms is astounding. The festival is a great chance to come out and support your friends.

Among the highlights:

THURSDAY, 4 PM in the Loeb Drama Center: President Faust hosts the Harvard Arts Medal Celebration honoring ARTS FIRST founder and award-winning actor John Lithgow ’67, ArD ’05. The heart of the event is a conversation with Mr. Lithgow hosted by President Faust that will include film and television clips from his illustrious career—plus a special surprise tribute performed by undergraduate singers and musicians! It’s free and open to all students. Tickets are available at the Harvard Box Office; some remaining tickets will also be available at the door.

FRIDAY, 8:30 PM in Sanders Theatre: The Office of the President presents “A CELEBRATION OF HARVARD ARTISTS” This spectacular evening will feature Tony award-winning alumni/ae actors, Oscar winning composers, internationally-acclaimed dancers, and extraordinary faculty and undergraduate artists under the direction of Tony Award-winning director Diane Paulus ’88. Tickets are free and available now at the Harvard Box Office; some remaining tickets will also be available at the door.

SATURDAY, 11:30 AM sharp on the Plaza:In the Beginning…,” a tongue-in-cheek ARTS FIRST origin story will kick off Saturday morning. It stars an array of wonderful student dancers, actors and singers, as well as Freshmen Dean Thomas Dingman, Reverand Jonathan Walton of Memorial Church, Professors Gregory Mankiw and Pardis Sabetti, and…well, yours truly. Come see us try to keep up with our gifted Harvard artists in this farcical re-telling of the ARTS FIRST Creation Story!

SATURDAY, 1-5 PM: The annual ARTS FIRST Performance Fair. Eleven performance sites. Eight performance slots at each. You do the math! Come out and see your friends shine.

BUT THERE’S MORE! Stop by one of the 5 Make Art Stations on the Plaza (plus Figure Drawing in Tercentenary Theatre and the ACT ONE Accessible Workshops in Sever Quad) and make some art with instructors and students from the OFA Ceramics Program, Hyperion Shakespeare Company, Harvard College Art Society + more!

SUNDAY, 2-4 PM: Jazz on the Plaza, featuring the Harvard Jazz Bands on the first half of the program, and Grammy nominated saxophonist Yosvany Terry of our Music Department performing with his band on the second half. Take a study break and enjoy the sun and sounds of these great musicians.

It’s a weekend you won’t want to miss, so I hope to see many of you at ARTS FIRST!

Dean Khurana