Bright Spots, Big Questions: Cultural Spaces in Greater Boston

Cultural organizations have found new ways to thrive during the pandemic

March 31, 2021

While the coronavirus pandemic has been devastating for the region’s arts sector and creative workers, there is some good news. Cultural organizations are finding new ways to build and finance space for rehearsal and recording, classes, performances, culinary enterprises, and more. Julie Koo, Vice President at TDC, opened this session by presenting findings from her work for the City of Boston, assessing the landscape of performing arts venues and artists both during and as we begin to emerge from the pandemic. That was followed by short talks from the leaders of four Boston-area organizations operating or seeking to build new cultural space. Each leader will share how they are approaching new business models, how they are faring in the pandemic, and the challenges and opportunities they see in retaining and creating new arts and cultural workspaces in the region. Kara Elliott-Ortega from the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture provided closing remarks.

Explore the presentation slides:


Cover slide for TDC's presentation slides. View TDC's presentation slides


Welcome & Opening Remarks
Eva Rosenberg, Interim Director of Arts & Culture, The Boston Foundation

Presentation of Report
Julie Koo, Vice President, TDC

Panel Discussion and Q&A
Eve Bridburg, Founder and Executive Director, GrubStreet, Inc.
Jennifer Sien Erickson, Director of Arts & Culture, Metropolitan Area Planning Council (Moderator)
Matt McArthur, Founder and Executive Director, The Record Co.
Derek Mitchell, Founding Executive Director, Lawrence Partnership
Harold Steward, Executive Director and Cultural Strategist, The Theater Offensive

Closing Remarks
Kara Elliott-Ortega, Chief of Arts & Culture, City of Boston