The City of Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division has awarded 2006 Community Arts Grants to Santa Monica-based organizations that showcase eclectic arts and cultural opportunities in the city.

On Wednesday, December 28th, 13 grants were awarded to the following organizations to host specific events.

– The Santa Monica Museum of Art will provide Wall Works video lesson plans and art materials to elementary school classrooms in Santa Monica.

When the students have completed the project, their artwork will be displayed at the Neighborhood Outreach Gallery at Santa Monica Place mall.

Teachers who would like to participate in this program should call the museum at (310) 586-6488, ext. 32.

Information, www.smmoa.org

– Highways Performance Space and Gallery will present its second annual poetry festival In the Beginning Was the Word this April.

The festival features four days of performances at Highways by local and national poets, slam champions, editors, actors, authors, teachers, and cultural workers from the gay, lesbian and transgender, African-American, Asian, Latino, hip-hop, and literary communities.

Information, (310) 453-1755 or www.highwaysperformance.org

-The 18th Street Arts Center will present Art Nights, a quarterly series in February, April, July, and October.

The center will open its galleries and artist studios for public tours and present free performance art and music.

Information, (310) 453-1755 or www.18thstreet.org

– Donna Sternberg and Dancers will debut a new dance multimedia performance piece that explores the ways that quantum physics affect people’s lives.

Two performances in a show called Rage to Know will be presented in the fall.

The dance company will also present two creative movement workshops for children at Virginia Avenue Park, introducing them to modern dance concepts and quantum physics concepts.

Information, (310) 260-1198 or www.dsdancers.com

-In the summer and fall, Empire of Teeth will work with residents who live in the Pico Neighborhood on a series of three collaborative community art proj-ects in performance, creative writing, and video art.

All workshops are free to Santa Monica residents and proj-ects will culminate in a free public exhibition and performance in the fall tentatively called the Virginia Avenue Park Project.

Information, (310) 392-9396 or www.empireofteeth.org

– The Santa Monica Theatre Guild will present the Y.E.S. Summer Circus for young people ages seven to 17.

In a series of storytelling workshops and performances, young people will be encouraged to perform in a play they create themselves.

Free performances will take place at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre, Virginia Avenue Park, and Santa Monica public libraries.

Information, (310) 828-7519 or www.morgan-wixson.org

– The Verdi Chorus will offer three Concert Series performances — two in April plus a free concert at Virginia Avenue Park in May.

The concerts offer selections from the classic operas around the world and musical plays.

Information, (310) 394-1902 or www.verdichorus.org

– The Powerhouse Theatre will publish a new book featuring stories told during Powerhouse’s Spark storytelling evenings.

The book, titled Spark: Stories from Santa Monica, will be published in the fall to commemorate the fifth year of Spark.

Information, (310) 396-3680 or www.powerhousetheatre.com

LATINO ARTS GRANTS — The Santa Monica Museum of Art will present Park Studio, a free outreach program held during spring break.

In its seventh year, the program will return to Virginia Avenue Park to offer hands-on, artist-led workshops and field trips to art institutions and artist studios throughout Los Angeles County to introduce students to the world of contemporary art.

Information, (310) 586-6488 or www.smmoa.org

– The 18th Street Art Center will produce a site-specific performance installation at Virginia Avenue Park called Dial M for Marcario.

This interactive performance directly involves community participants from four workshops at SMASH (the Santa Monica Alternative School House) and Virginia Avenue Park.

Final performances will take place during the 2006 DÌas de los Muertos/Days of the Dead.

Information, (310) 453-3711 or www.18thstreet.org

– The Center for Celebration Arts and the Pico Youth and Family Center will present a DÌas de los Muertos Project at Virginia Avenue Park.

The project will end with a traditional procession to Woodlawn Cemetery to honor ancestors buried there.

Prior to the procession, the Pico Center will present five days of craft workshops for community members to create altars and other artwork associated with the holiday.

The holiday features traditions steeped in Mexican culture.

Information, (310) 828-5353 or www.celebrationarts.org

– Highways Performance Space and Gallery will present the second annual Latino New Works Festival, a weeklong celebration of Latino performance and spoken word.

The festival will begin with a series of performance workshops at Virginia Avenue park that focuses on discovering Santa Monica’s emerging Latino artists and continue at Highways with four nights of new works by some of the nation’s most accomplished Latino performance and spoken word artists.

Information, (310) 453-1755 or www.highwaysperformance.org

– The Powerhouse Theatre and its resident professional children’s theatre company Creative PlayGround will present their annual DÌas de los Muertos children’s play Cuentos de mi Familia.

The play will be presented at Santa Monica elementary schools, public libraries, and at The Powerhouse Theatre.

Information, (310) 396-3680 or www.powerhousetheatre.com

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