About Arts Midwest World Fest

Arts Midwest World Fest presents international musical ensembles in intensive week-long residencies in smaller Midwest communities. Its purpose is to foster an understanding of and appreciation for global uniqueness and differences.

Arts Midwest World Fest’s objectives are to:

  • present high-caliber, accessible international artists to small- or mid-sized Midwest communities;
  • provide a multifaceted experience to community residents, particularly young people;
  • integrate the artists and their music into a broader social, cultural, political, and historical framework;
  • encourage young people to explore issues and understand concerns of diverse cultures; and
  • create a lasting musical and cultural impact on participants.

Each cycle of Arts Midwest World Fest occurs over a two year period in which four global musical ensembles conduct week-long intensive residencies in selected communities throughout the Midwest. The residencies consist of school concerts, workshops, and outreach activities, and culminate in a public concert.

To extend the cultural experience to the classroom, Arts Midwest provides participating communities with a curriculum that helps students and teachers better understand and appreciate the customs and traditions of the visiting ensembles. We hope that studying other cultures will spark a lasting curiosity in both teachers and students that will result in further exploration of the diverse and fascinating cultures of the world.

A program of Arts Midwest, the 2015–2017 Arts Midwest World Fest cycle is generously supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, 3M Foundation, and Anime Twin Cities. Additional support is provided by the Ministry of Culture of the People’s Republic of China and the Chinese Heritage Foundation Grants Fund of The Minneapolis Foundation for Anda Union, the Consulate General of Israel to the Midwest for Baladino, and the Délégation du Québec à Chicago for Le Vent du Nord. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

Arts Midwest is also generously supported by Illinois Arts Council Agency, Indiana Arts Commission, Iowa Arts Council, Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Minnesota State Arts Board, North Dakota Council on the Arts, Ohio Arts Council, South Dakota Arts Council, and Wisconsin Arts Board.