Good news for the arts?

January 30, 2009
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Last night, on my way to the Phoenix Theatre to see "Love Person," I called and discovered that the play was sold out. And I hadn't made a reservation.

On the one hand, I'm frustated that I didn't get to the show (which closes Saturday). On the other, I'm thrilled that, despite all of the doom and gloom, the production has been able to attract a strong crowd.

Yes, the bad news in the arts lately has been plentiful. But the incident inspires me to ask: What are some other signs of hope out there, both locally and nationally, for the arts? Where are the green shoots coming up through the concrete?

Some starters:

--Bloomberg reports that 19 Broadway shows are set to open in the next three months, which could mean the most new productions on Broadway since the 1986/87 season.

--The NEA reports that fiction reading is up for the first time in 25 years.

--The economic bailout bill being kicked around includes a proposed $50 million infusion into the NEA. Add in a poet at the inauguration and more conversation about the arts in Washington than any time in recent memory.

Come on Polyannas, got anything to add?
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