Rhode Island’s Poetry Out Loud Champion to Compete in DC Next Week

420X-30 Simon poem #1 (b)
Photo of RI Poetry Out Loud 2017 Champion Simon Rabatin by Malcolm Greenaway

Rhode Island’s Poetry Out Loud 2017 champion, Simon Rabatin, leaves early next week for Washington, DC, where he will compete with state champions from throughout the nation at the 2017 Poetry Out Loud National Finals.

Rabatin, a senior at Moses Brown School in Providence, competed successfully against students from 15 schools from throughout Rhode Island on March 5th at the RISD Museum.  As State Champion, Rabatin received a $200 prize check and an all-expense-paid trip to compete at the National Finals from April 24th to April 26th in Washington, DC. Moses Brown School will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books.

On Tuesday, April 25th, Simon will compete in a regional semifinal against state champions from the Eastern Seaboard and Ohio.  The regional semifinal will be held from 9am to noon, and will be livestreamed. The National Finals will be on Wednesday evening, April 26th, and will be livestreamed from the Lisner Auditorium on the campus of George Washington University from 7:00pm to 9:15pm.

The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts wishes Simon Rabatin all the best for the week that lies ahead!

Arts Account for Over $1 Billion in Compensation to Rhode Island Workers

Rhode Island Governor Gina M. Raimondo talks with The Steel Yard director Howie Sneider during a visit to the Providence-based arts organization. Compensation in Rhode Island’s arts and cultural sector was over $1 billion according to a report released today by the National Endowment for the Arts and the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic Analysis

New Study by U.S. Dept of Commerce and NEA Shows Rhode Island Leading Region in State Employment in the Arts

Providence, RI – April 19, 2017

More than $1 billion in compensation was paid to Rhode Islanders involved in the arts and cultural production sector in 2014, according to a new study released today through a collaboration of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA).

“Today’s report from the federal government shows that the arts and culture create jobs and represent a significant share of employment in our state,” Governor Gina M. Raimondo said. “We are grateful to the work of the State Arts Council and the many artists and cultural organizations who contribute so much to the economic and cultural life of our state.”

According to the report, close to 18,000 Rhode Islanders were employed in the arts and cultural sector in 2014, representing 3.7% of all employment in the state. Rhode Island leads the New England region in the percentage of state employment attributed to the arts and culture and ranked No. 2 in the percentage of total state compensation credited to the arts (3.6%), following Massachusetts. Read more

RI Congressmen sign on to letter urging increased support for NEA


U.S. Representatives David Cicilline (RI-01) and Jim Langevin (RI-02) have signed onto a letter to the Chairman and Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee Subcommittee on the Interior, urging them to increase funding for the National Endowment for the Arts to $155 million, an increase of about $7 million from its current level of about $148 million.  More than 150 Members of Congress have signed onto the letter.

“Few other federal investments have such a widespread impact and multiplying effect across the nation as does the Arts Endowment,” the letter reads. “For every one dollar spent on direct grants, nearly nine non-federal dollars are matched, generating $600 million in matching support while at the same time enriching our children and communities with access to the arts they might no otherwise have.”