On Saturday, Sept 24 from 12:30-3 pm, Dance the Vote STL will present Midterms Matter, a free, nonpartisan, family friendly, all-inclusive event in front of the Missouri History Museum to promote voter awareness in advance of the general election on Tuesday, November 8. When DTV first performed for midterms at the museum in 2018, they attracted over 1000 attendees before pivoting to virtual performances during the pandemic. This is their first return to large scale outdoor events.
A highlight of the event will be taking “Missouri’s largest photo to promote the midterms”. People of all ages and political affiliations are invited to participate in this nonpartisan photo.
U.S. Presidential elections are big news worldwide every four years. But what happens in the midterm elections can have just as big an impact on the direction of the country.
“At Midterms Matter, we will energize attendees to participate in the midterms elections and exercise their precious right. Our event also honors National Disability Voter Registration Week and will feature an all-inclusive short community dance to be taught for people of all ages and abilities, including people with disabilities. Everyone is welcome,” said Joan Lipkin, producing artistic director of Dance the Vote.
Confirmed dance companies include St. Louis Academy of Dance, Ashleyliane Dance Company, Grupo Atlantico, Amara Arts, Skystone Dance Ensemble, Resilience Dance Company and others. Local singers including Carmen Garcia and Katie Dunne McGrath and Friends will perform. Speakers include Denise Lieberman of Missouri Voter Protection Coalition, Rev. Darryl Gray of Missouri Faith Voices, Katie Rodriguez Banister of Access-4-All with more to be announced.
Choreographer and co-producer Ashley L. Tate explains, “We will begin with some familiar dances including the Electric Slide and the Wobble and then teach an original, short, inclusive and accessible community dance that can be enjoyed by everyone. This dance is for all levels and abilities!”
Additional activities will include voter registration and education, information fair with local nonprofits and community groups, kids’ activities, the Bubble Lady, food trucks, a DJ, and more.
“I am passionate about finding ways the Missouri Historical Society can help drive civic engagement,” said Dr. Jody Sowell, President and CEO of the Missouri Historical Society. “We believe public history has the power to strengthen communities. The goal of our exhibits, community tours, and public programming — like the Midterms Matter event — is to help the public make connections between past, present and future. We believe the more you appreciate a place’s past, the more invested you will be in its present and future. MHS is fortunate to play a part in helping the public make these connections and is proud to support Dance the Vote and civic engagement.”
Presented by Dance the Vote St. Louis, a program of That Uppity Theatre Company, and co-sponsored by the Missouri History Museum, St. Louis University, St. Louis ARC, Missouri Faith Voices, NAACP-St Louis County, League of Women Voters – St. Louis, Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council, National Council of Jewish Women STL, Missouri Voter Protection Coalition, National Women’s Political Caucus of St Louis, ProgressWomen, Access-MO, Paraquad, Access-4-All LLC, Equity Action Collective LLC, Immigrant Song, Missouri Centers for Independent Living, Missouri Equity Education Partnership, 350 STL, A. Philip Randolph Institute St. Louis Chapter, American Association of University Women St Louis (AAUW),Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice, empower: abilities, The Link, Metropolitan Congregations United, and Conversations for Political Change.
Founded in 2016, Dance the Vote (DTV) is a nonpartisan arts organization that uses the arts to promote voter registration, education and advocacy. Performances have been featured on CBS, the Black Entertainment Network, the Higher Education Channel, American Theatre Magazine, St. Louis Magazine, the St Louis Post-Dispatch and Dance Magazine and seen by several million people.
DTV has received the IDEA Award from MindsEye, What’s Right with the Region from Focus St. Louis and the Moving Democracy Award from St. Louis Magazine as part of the 2021 A-List.
Midterms Matter is funded in part by the Regional Arts Commission of St. Louis, the Scarlet Feather Fund, and Rev Up!
National Voter Registration Day 9/20 https://nationalvoterregistrationday.org
National Voter Education Week 10/3-10/7 https://votereducationweek.org/
Disability Voting Rights Week 9/16/-22 https://www.aapd.com/advocacy/voting/dvrw/
Lynn Venhaus has had a continuous byline in St. Louis metro region publications since 1978. She is a Rotten Tomatoes-approved film critic, currently reviews films for Webster-Kirkwood Times and KTRS Radio, covers entertainment for PopLifeSTL.com and co-hosts podcast PopLifeSTL.com…Presents, and writes features and news for Belleville News-Democrat and contributes to other publications. She is a member of CCA, AWFJ and St. Louis Film Critics Association. She is a founding member of the St. Louis Theater Circle.