Creativity Moves Community

Dean Lester Tanaka

By Joseph Camel Jr.

Celebration of Creativity and Innovation with Professor Laura McBride and North Las Vegas Mayor John Lee shone a light on importance of the arts in our lives and community.

The event took place Sept. 6 at College of Southern Nevada’s North Las Vegas campus. Inspired by School of Arts and Letters Interim Dean Lester Tanaka, the celebration was a success.

Several artists took the stage including dancers, jazz trio performers, opera singers, writers and speeches on stage. The room was filled with CSN students and community members.

“The event was inspired by author and faculty member Laura McBride who had chosen the North Las Vegas campus because of its history and richness,” Tanaka said.

Author Laura McBride

McBride wanted to launch her new book “In the Midnight Room” at CSN as the plot of the book takes place in 1950s Las Vegas and she thought it was apropos to present the book here and on campus where she teaches. She shared her thoughts about the history of artistic ventures while speaking to the audience.

“Creativity is a human experience and is not reserved just for artists or people who identify themselves as being creative,” McBride said. “We are creative by nature.” She also explained how happiness is found in creativity. “It comes from it, which plays an important role for giving us as humans a meaningful life.”

She shared, “The potential of working with one’s creative spirit to reveal an inexpressible idea to solve a problem is simply spirit enlarging.” McBride thinks the arts can lead to great solutions to our problems.

Mayor Lee of North Las Vegas spoke on stage sharing his testimony about his life and how his persistence paid off. He shared his thoughts on creativity and the importance of it in the City. “Artistry is very important in the world especially to our community of North Las Vegas. We have the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in all of Vegas. Art, dancing and music make life such a joy.”

Mayor John Lee

Lee also said as mayor his job is to bring comfort to the community and the arts and creativity play a large part.

CSN dance faculty members Kelly Roth, Danny Mendoza and Carrie Miles performed a few pieces to express visually how stories are told through movement and craft.

Roth explained how creativity is a way of life. “It keeps me interested in living; it keeps me from going into a routine that can be so destructive in any profession.”

Mendoza said creativity is a form of vulnerability. “You give something back to the world by being creative. Creativity gives me freedom in my mind and body and I can share it with everyone around me.”

As a dancer and performer, Miles knows the importance of creativity in art and how it needs to be valued in our community. “Being creative is an innate ability in every person that is here. It exists in architecture and people simply walking around.” Miles said there are opportunities for expression to share our cultural experiences here at CSN and how wonderful that is.

CSN student Jake Macias, who performed with the Jazz Trio at the event, said, “The professors and instructors at CSN help with bringing out the creative aspect in you. They are well-experienced and have their feet wet.” Macias also explained how his brothers grew up playing instruments and that is what he said helped bring the artistry and creativity about in him.

Music student and jazz performer Haldrin Gonzalez said, “The importance of creativity and artistry in the world brings people together. It’s the universal language.”

Tanaka said the event made him proud. There are plans to make this an annual event.

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