VCA News

May Updates

May Updates

What do the VCA and Pharrell Williams have in common?

Lifting the state of Virginia through the arts!

As Pharrell returned his SOMETHING IN THE WATER festival to his native state of Virginia, the Virginia Commission for the Arts jumped at the chance to support it – and to highlight an artist on the Touring Artist Roster. The Jason Cale Band took to the community stage on Friday, April 28, kicking off Day 1 of the festival. Jason spent 20 years as a professional musician performing all over the world with both the Army and Air Force Bands, before settling in the Virginia Beach area. As a part of the regional arts ecosystem, The Jason Cale Band proved the perfect fit for the SOMETHING IN THE WATER community stage, and a great representative of the VCA’s Touring Artist Roster!

Read About the VCA’s Support
Learn More About the VCA’s Artist Rosters


May Updates

Meet Anya Pfeiffer

The VCA is expanding ways to bring talent to the agency through a distinctive program that creates opportunities for young professionals.

Anya Pfeiffer joined the VCA team in February, bringing her experience and interests to the agency as a Virginia Management Fellow (VMF). The goal of the VMF program is for Fellows to gain diverse experience in the Commonwealth’s government through eight-month placements across the state.

A graduate from the University of Virginia, Anya is elevating a variety of projects and initiatives for the VCA. Her work includes participating in Advisory Panels for hundreds of VCA grants, focusing on accessibility initiatives, advancing the Virginia Arts Ed Data project, and engaging with the VCA’s constituents.

“The VMF program has been an amazing opportunity to learn about the different aspects of state government,” said Anya. “My background is in education, data analytics, and policy, and the VCA has provided a unique placement for me to strengthen my technical writing skills while increasing my knowledge of grant making, accessibility policy, and practices in the arts.”

This is the VCA’s first opportunity to participate in the VMF program, established in 2017 and hosted by the Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM) in partnership with Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Anya has been a complementary addition to the staff as the agency both supports the development of upcoming leaders in state government and the investment in the arts for the Commonwealth of Virginia.


May Updates

Teaching Artist Spotlight – Laura Lee Gulledge

May 14-20 is National Teaching Artists Appreciation Week!

The VCA celebrates our teaching artists and thanks them for inspiring learners across the Commonwealth! This week, we highlight Laura Lee Gulledge, who is one of over 40 teaching artists on the VCA Teaching Artist Roster – a vetted group of experienced teaching artists who are accomplished in their respective disciplines.

Laura Lee Gulledge is a graphic novel and comic artist based in Charlottesville, Virginia. She explores visual storytelling at the intersection of words, pictures, movement, and wellness. As a teaching artist on the VCA Teaching Artist Roster, she utilizes VCA funding to propel her practice across Virginia and reach a multitude of learners – middle schoolers being her forte!

In addition to her 60-90 minute workshops, Laura Lee facilitates the creation of large-scale collaborative murals as a week-long residency offering. Students learn how to create their own comics early in the week, and then work as a team to illustrate a larger mural that becomes installed!

Partnering schools and organizations value Laura’s Lee’s ability to combine English and the visual arts into one program. Her unique discipline provides young minds the ability to communicate their feelings and stories in safe spaces, as well as teaching them problem-solving and how to thoughtfully make decisions.

To learn more about Laura Lee, visit her website and the VCA Teaching Artist Roster, here.


May Updates

Blue Star Museums

The National Endowment for the Arts has opened registration for the Blue Star Museums program, in partnership with Blue Star Families. The program encourages museums, as well as other cultural institutions such as zoos, botanical gardens, and historic houses, to offer free admission to active duty military personnel and up to five family members. The program launches on May 20, 2023 – Armed Forces Day and runs through Labor Day, September 4, 2023.

The VCA encourages museums and other institutions across Virginia to register for this program; it’s a means to express appreciation for service and sacrifice, and a wonderful way to recruit life-time museum goers! Learn More, Here. 

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