The Open Book, located in downtown Minneapolis, hosts a crucial showcase of youth writing tonight.
For over twenty years, the Perpich Center for Arts Education has been an oasis for high school students statewide to practice art in almost all its forms in a supportive and wholly unique environment.
But the financial situation of the school has reached a level of unprecedented peril as legislature proceeds to slash its budget, curtail its one-of-a-kind admissions process, and turn the school into a charter.
The potential victims? The hundreds and hundreds of burgeoning artists across the state, like those handful of young writers on display tonight at the Open Book, who stand to lose their protective bomb shelter of creative development.
Over the course of the year, the literature classes hold several readings, the lion's share of which are held on campus in their theater hall. But once a year, the classes venture into the wilderness, staking out a public forum to hold a major reading of the works they've produced over the course of the semester.
The Open Book could not make a more fitting line of defense against the threats that advance like thunderheads upon the school. A tireless booster of all things printed and subliminal, tonight's reading is not just a showcase of the finest youth writing the state (and, judging by the national awards the PCAE classes have curried over the years, perhaps the country) can offer.
It's a call to arms-- an invitation to show support for an institution that means more to the state's art community than most realize.
Even now, the gavel is falling on decisions that may dry up this wellspring of creative youth. It is, as they say, the zero hour. So, if you were waiting for the last minute to show some support, you're in luck. Because it's right now.
7:30 P.M. Open Book, 1011 Washington Ave. South, Minneapolis, 55415.