Austin Arts Block Party

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The Long Center was the place to be for last Sunday’s Austin Arts Block Party. Representatives from local arts organizations, theaters, and museums were on hand to promote their upcoming seasons and exhibits, answer questions, and take ticket orders. Mayor Steve Adler even made a brief appearance to read a city proclamation honoring the day.

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A different arts organization was highlighted every fifteen minutes in the main performance space, Dell Hall. Some groups, such as Conspirare (above) and Long Center Presents, featured their high school troupes. Austin Symphony director Peter Bay spoke about this season’s concerts. A soprano and a tenor from Austin Opera sang solos. Ballet Austin showed a promotional video, but had no live dancers.

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Four members of the Tapestry Dance Company gave a demonstration in the more-intimate Rollins Studio Theatre. Tapestry is the only professional tap dance troupe in the country. The hoofers showed off their favorite steps, talked about their shoe preferences, and answered questions from the audience.

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Cast members of Austin Shakespeare performed selections from their next production, Sunday in the Park with George. This group apparently does more than their name implies.

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The entire Long Center complex was buzzing with activity. Other local arts organizations, such as Zach Theater and the Umlauf Sculpure Garden, had information tables set up in the lobby. For those wanting to learn new and valuable skills, lessons in Stage Combat and Swashbuckling were taught outside on the terrace. Several food trucks were parked nearby to hold off the munchies. Guided backstage tours offered a glimpse of well-lit dressing rooms decorated with theater posters.

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So, Austinites, now is the time to support our local arts organizations and order tickets for the 2015-16 season!

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