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Getting to Know You

A Word from Russell Granet


Dear friends,

Like most parents, I have treasured memories of my daughter’s “firsts.” Her first steps, her first words, her first time walking in the sand at the shore. One of the most memorable of these firsts was her first attendance at a play. A piece of theater that was not only created for her age group, but was a vital, stimulating, and captivating work of art. I have been thinking of that magical moment, back in 2011, a lot this past month. Because the doors I walked through with my then three-year-old daughter are the same doors I now walk through as the new President of New 42nd Street.

Over the last few weeks, I have had the honor of meeting the people behind an organization I’ve long admired. This extraordinary nonprofit’s mission aligns with the commitment I’ve made to arts education and community engagement, as reflected in my experience at Lincoln Center, NYU, and the Center for Arts Education, among others.

It comes as no surprise that in every conversation I’ve had with New 42 staff, donors and board members, we touch on a shared core belief: the arts are a basic civil right—a right which begins at birth.

Even now, looking out from my office at New 42nd Street Studios, I see hundreds of kids arriving at the theater for this season’s Victory Dance, a summertime series that mirrors the robust education programs we provide during the school year. As a born and bred New Yorker, I am inspired when I think of the 40,000 kids who travel each year from across this city to experience live theater—many for the first time—at the historic New Victory Theater.

It has been, and will continue to be, a true joy getting to know you better. Together, we will champion equity and inclusion in the performing arts that move us—as individuals, as communities, and as a society.

All my best,

Russell Granet
President & CEO
New 42nd Street

Photo: Gerri Hernandez

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