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2010 Governor's Arts Awards Recipients Bios

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2010 Governor's Arts Awards Honorees' Biographies

Edward G. Rendell

Distinguished Arts Award  Charles Dutoit

Chief conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra Charles Dutoit will receive the Distinguished Arts Award. From 1990 through 2010, Mr. Dutoit was also artistic director and principal conductor of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s summer festival at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in upstate New York. Between 1990 and 1999, he also directed the Orchestra’s summer series at the Mann Center, and led them in a series of distinctive recordings. He is artistic director and principal conductor of the Royal Philharmonic in London, and music director of the Verbier Festival Orchestra in his native Switzerland. For 25 years (1977 to 2002), Mr. Dutoit was artistic director of the Montreal Symphony. Since his debut with The Philadelphia Orchestra in 1980, Mr. Dutoit has been invited each season to conduct all the major orchestras of the United States, including those of Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, and Cleveland. He has also performed regularly with all the great orchestras of Europe. His more than 170 recordings, have garnered more than 40 awards and distinctions.

Hazlett Memorial Award for the Artist of the Year   Moe A. Brooker

Artist Moe A. Brooker will receive the Hazlett Memorial Award for the Artist of the Year, recognizing the artistic excellence of an artist living and working in Pennsylvania. Born and raised in Philadelphia, and with a certificate from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and BFA and MFA degrees from Tyler School of Art, he has been an artist and teacher for nearly 40 years. His works of art are in public and private, national and international collections and he has an extensive exhibition record, including solo and group shows in Philadelphia, New York, Mississippi, Denmark, Brazil, and China. He has taught at the University of Virginia, University of North Carolina, Cleveland Institute of Art, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and served as the chair of the Foundation Department at the Parsons School of Design in New York. Mr. Brooker is currently professor and chair of the Foundation Department at Moore College of Art & Design. He has been the recipient of several honors and awards, including invitations from Oxford University in the U.K. to participate in conferences of scholars in 2006 and 2008.

Pennsylvania Creative Community Award    John Vanco

John Vanco, who will receive the Pennsylvania Creative Community Award for his outstanding contributions to the cultural life of Erie and the surrounding region, recently marked his 40th year as Director of the Erie Art Museum and next month will celebrate the Grand Opening of an expanded museum facility. Mr. Vanco has curated more than 400 exhibitions and organized traveling “Made in Erie” exhibitions that have been viewed across the United States. He has been appointed to more than 30 advisory panels for the National Endowment for the Arts, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Meet the Composer and the state arts councils in Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York and Montana. He founded and curates the Erie Art Museum Blues and Jazz Festival and the Museum’s Contemporary Music Series; initiated the planning process that resulted in the creation of Discovery Square, and led to the creation of the expERIEnce Children’s Museum; and collaborated with the Erie County Convention Center Authority to include public art in the new Convention Center. He has also served on the boards of directors of the Pennsylvania Federation of Museums and Historical Organizations, Pennsylvania Presenters, and the Pennsylvania Humanities Council.

2010 Patron Award    Carole Price Shanis and Joseph Shanis

Carole Price Shanis and Joseph Shanis will receive the 2010 Patron Award, recognizing the generosity and passionate dedication they have demonstrated to Philadelphia’s great arts institutions – including The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Curtis Institute of Music, the Pennsylvania Ballet, The Kimmel Center, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Their commitment to organizational development and achievement has benefited numerous cultural organizations across the span of arts disciplines. As board president of the Philadelphia Art Alliance for 15 years, Mrs. Shanis led the revitalization of the historic organization. She has also served on numerous boards and commissions, and is currently on the Mayor’s Cultural Advisory Council and the boards of The Kimmel Center, the Curtis Institute of Music, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

Leadership and Service to Youth   ArtsQuest

The Lehigh Valley’s ArtsQuest, will be honored for its leadership and service to youth. Originated as a downtown music festival in Bethlehem in 1984, ArtsQuest now offers arts and cultural programs to more than one million people each year. ArtsQuest provides arts-in-education classes, job skill initiatives for teens, after-school enrichment programs for students and art classes for the community. It annually presents Musikfest and Christkindlmarkt Bethlehem, and owns and operates the Banana Factory, a community arts center and gallery that features 28 studio artists, two award-winning galleries, and a variety of classes and arts education programs, including programs developed to benefit at-risk youth. With a group of Lehigh Valley arts and cultural partners, it is developing SteelStacks, a 21st century town square for Bethlehem on the grounds of the Bethlehem Steel plant, where culture, history and the arts will intersect with technology, education and celebration. Each year ArtsQuest provides more than $38 million in economic impact in the Lehigh Valley and recently received one of 21 grants awarded nationally from the National Endowment for the Arts’ Mayors’ Institute on City Design 25th Anniversary Initiative.