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You are watching: Church street school for music and art
While the streets steamed with unseasonably brutal weather on Sunday, June 6, the live blues wafting in and around White Street drew crowds closer. Abby Levine on drums and Stacy Werdin on keyboard were hot, hot, hot!
White Street’s closure provided plenty of space for parents, children, neighbors, musicians and artists to get inspired. The Happening! of the Church Street School for Music and Art (CSSMA) was definitely happening!
Located in the former The Flea Theater, CSSMA celebrated the rebirth of Tribeca with an afternoon in the street devoted to the arts— the core of this neighborhood institution.
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Unfazed by the heat, children engaged in watercolors spraying, mixed media weaving, botanical printing, and hula hooping among the afternoon’s activities with a backdrop of performed live music.
Artistic choices to make this multi-textured weaving, hanging on the gate of Tribeca Synagogue. (Photo by Tequila Minsky)
Amir Diop, a member of Soho Art Renaissance Factory, a group of artists who met a year ago while painting the plywood on storefront windows in Soho, oversaw children painting a mural-type work of art on a huge sheet of plywood.
“I’m all about the community,” he said, while prepping the wood under the noon sweltering sun. Later that afternoon, children clamored to contribute to the group artistic endeavor.
First located 31 years ago on Church Street, hence the name, the school later moved to Warren St., and in 2018 to White Street, expanding with changes in the neighborhood. Surviving 9-11, Sandy, and the pandemic, it offers programming in music and the arts for children from 16 months through senior high schoolers and up. In a typical year, 1000 different students might be availing themselves to its programs.
“During the pandemic, all classes were virtual,” reports Associate Director Betsy Kerlin. Eighty percent of their students continued on Zoom. During last summer, their seasonal enrollment was higher than usual since even from afar students could continue their classes.