The latest ArtsWatch includes a generous gift to the Spy Museum, repatriated objects to the National Museum of Asian Arts, the World Culture Festival and a new Studio Theatre associate artistic director.
Spy Museum Receives Multimillion Dollar Gift from Verstandig Family Foundation
The International Spy Museum is the recipient of a $3 million-dollar, multi-year grant from the Verstandig Family Foundation, the largest gift ever from a foundation. The foundation was established by Spy Museum board member Grant Verstandig. The museum’s exhibit “Spying That Launched a Nation” will be reimagined with the help of the new grant funds.
D.C. to Host World Culture Festival Later This Year
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser joined humanitarian Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, founder of Art of Living, to announce a new festival coming this fall. The World Culture Festival will be September 29 through October 1 on the National Mall. The purpose of the festival is “to honor humanity’s culture, diversity and unity,” according to a press release. Past World Culture Festivals have been held in Bangalore, Berlin and New Delhi.
National Museum of Asian Art Announces Partnership with Republic of Yemen Government as U.S. Repatriates 77 Cultural Objects
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art will be providing safe storage and care for 77 objects the U.S. government is repatriating to the Republic of Yemen. Sixty-four of the objects were forfeited to the U.S. due to investigative efforts initiated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. At the end of February, the objects entered custody of the National Museum of Asian Art in a repatriation ceremony.
Studio Theatre Names New Associate Artistic Director
Danilo Gambini is Studio Theatre’s new associate artistic director, having started part-time and serving full-time since March 20. Gambini is a Brazil native and most recently received praise for directing the one-person show “Ni Mi Madre” at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater in New York. Gambini has also worked on the musicals “Sabina” and “Thebes.” He will serve as Studio Theatre’s local casting director, helping move shows through the production process and leading community engagement. Plans for him to direct some shows are afoot.