Since our establishment in Brookline in January 2003, and through the end of our Brookline Community Center for the Arts (BCCA)
Coolidge Corner arts facility tenure in May 2005, we served 7,500+ community members with 170 classes/week and 500 events/year in music, film-making, acting, world dance forms, martial arts, fitness, visual arts, technology, and science, with its diverse faculty of 350. In February 2020, it established the Cambridge Community Center for the Arts (CCCA), a new arts center at Canal District Kendall
, to help artists who lost their spaces, with recent facility closures in Cambridge. We converted the BioMed Realty
sponsored retail space into a versatile arts facility, and commenced classes, workshops, events, and rehearsals, employing an ever-growing and diverse artist faculty. The pandemic required us to postpone/cancel all in-person programming, but we quickly pivoted to online/virtual community programming and continuing artist employment, while continuing to develop our technological infrastructure for future viability.
After the pandemic-related non-essential business shutdown ended, our organization partnered up with Eureka Ensemble
, a charitable professional classical and contemporary chamber music ensemble, that works with battered and homeless women, and with refugee immigrant kids. In mid-October, we partnered up with The Flavor Continues (TFC)
, a non-profit dedicated to the cultivation of Street and Club dance, music, art, and culture. These partnerships have brought and/or restored TFC’s and Eureka’s programming to the City of Cambridge, greatly increased the onsite usage of the CCCA’s arts facility during the Pandemic, and have provided a home for over 100 artists of all ethnic, social, and sexual backgrounds, ages, and abilities, to safely engage in arts and education, at no charge, scaled or contribute-as- you-can options. Eureka ensemble has produced 2 virtually broadcast concerts/lectures/fundraisers at the CCCA (June 17th and October 17th) featuring 20 local musicians, speakers, and staff, in addition to rehearsing there, and has 2 more concerts planned this Fall session. And TFC has brought 22 Street and Club dance crews/groups, largely BIPOC and multi-racial, most of which had lost their practice and teaching facilities due to arts facility closures and the pandemic, and with ages ranging from 7 to 50s, encompassing 9 genres of Street and Club dance, and rehearsing and providing private lessons and workshops 3 to 11 hours/day, since October 18th!
The CCCA provides:
The CCCA’s fully ADA accessible, street-level, BioMed Realty owned, serviced, and sponsored arts facility amenities, include:
- A 2,800 SF arts facility with a 1,100 SF dance floor, 34’7″ of 6′-tall mirrors, and a 10’4″ to 12′ ceiling, and 1,700 SF of social, staff, and auxiliary/utility spaces
- Plenty of panoramic natural light due to the “glass bowl” design of the facility, coupled with roll-up curtains for every window to block light and/or increase privacy, as needed.
- High end audio amplification system, mixers, and microphones, and videography equipment
- Single and 4-camera professional recording studio and live streaming equipment
- Theater and social event lighting, and dimmable LED general lighting
- A 65″ LED TV with HDMI and Ethernet connections, and a dedicated high end speaker
- Chairs, cafe round and rectangular tables, and lounge furniture
- Photography/videography/shows/live streaming 13′-wide x 10′-tall curtain backdrop, 6′-wide x 9′-tall green screen, and softbox lights
- Business-grade 50mbps high speed WiFi and Ethernet
- Health, fitness, and martial arts equipment, including yoga and Pilates mats, blankets, weights, and blocks, and boxing gloves and pads. (Note: For added safety, use of this equipment is highly restricted during the pandemic.)
- Easy public transit (trains and buses) and driving access, parking meters, and parking garages
- A highly safe, MIRV 13- and Active Carbon-equipped HVAC system
- A spacious ADA accessible private restroom
- 2.25 times the square footage needed needed for our pandemic-based capacity of 10 socially-distant people (which is also 1/3 of the legally allowed 25% pandemic capacity based on our social gathering venue capacity)
- Three full size (6″) entrances/exists
- The above health and safety practices and amenities, coupled with our strict cleaning and ample-inter-programming breaks protocols, result in a very safe experience for artists/educations, students/patrons, and staff members
Our multi-lingual staff and volunteers have many years of diverse production and hosting experience, and we work with each artist/educator/other facility user in a custom-tailored fashion, and help them produce their desired outcome(s). The artists, educator, and staff members, who have walked through the doors of the CCCA, feel at home, welcome, and inspired to create, experience, share, and grow. And the 3 non-profit organization are actively working to cultivate and strengthen their partnerships, to continue to increase their combined services and cultural/educational programming to the Cambridge and surrounding community, and to establish long-term arts facilities.