The HEART MKM Cultural Arts Center – Quartier des Arts NoHo
What is the unofficial motto of NoHo? “NoHo is only as great as its people.” Our growing and hardworking arts community has used its creativity to persevere over the past year. Meet the HEART – Hsincere Eeducation through ARTs. They operate their non-profit performing arts academy in their home, the HEART MKM Cultural Arts Center, in the center of the NoHo Arts District. They have done a lot with the space and many new programs and projects are coming soon!
They manage the operation of a historic facility that has three magnificent dance studios, a theater, a large patio with an outdoor stage and private parking.
The HEART MKM Cultural Arts Center is available for hire to artists of all disciplines.
Formerly located downtown, they encountered challenges including parking, traffic, etc. Thus, they decided to partner with the owners, Mrs. Shirley Martin and Ondra Miller to take over the operational responsibilities.
Eartha Robinson, one of the founders of The HEART, says: âWe have always loved the artistic community of NoHo and felt that the bohemian spirit of the region was perfectly aligned with our vision of building a space where artists would feel. safe, welcome and creative. “
However, as with all of our eclectic NoHo neighborhood, we need to be creative. When the pandemic struck, in March 2020, the HEART MKM Cultural Arts Center had to adapt quickly to the ‘new normal’ and was among the first to explore online course possibilities through the ZOOM platform, broadcast directly from their theater.
Martin Hall, the on-site manager, has also become the certified Covid-19 compliance manager for film / video / TV production, meaning they can continue to offer studio and movie theater rentals as per strict C-19 procedures. With temperatures taken at the door, contact tracing forms completed, disinfection stations provided with limited participation, social distancing, and mandatory masks, they were able to build a healthy base of dance, film / video teachers. etc., allowing production rehearsals a safe place to be creative. As other institutions gradually begin to open, they remain cautious but slowly increase their options and opportunities with an expansion of the courses offered.
âWhen we moved our business to this facility, the space had seen better days, frankly,â says Martin.
âWe immediately made major repairs and gradually restored the parts to where they needed to be. We installed a theatrical lighting system in the theater, which is now a very functional performance space with lights, sound – even a white Yamaha grand piano, which we will be presenting at the jazz nights that we have planned as soon as possible. we can safely open. in the world!”
They spend their time meeting more and more dance teachers and artists to bring their programs to the studios and to the theater, so there is a lot of optimism about the success of the future of this unique space. The HEART has recently started over with a mix of in-person / live, ZOOM and hybrids of acting, dance / movement, voiceover, editing and, of course, plans to add many more exciting courses from. here this summer. In addition, they have established dance teachers who are already teaching classes during the week, such as Jazz / Funk, Modern, West African and Flamenco, more to come.
Once again, Martin sets out their plans: âWe fully intend to expand our performance offering with live music, cabarets, comedy, poetry, spoken word, new plays, dance presentations, master classes, etc.
There is so much we want to offer, and we have the perfect, flexible place to accomplish that and exceed people’s expectations. The only limits are our own imagination / creativity.
People can reach The HEART on their website www.theheartarts.org, Facebook and Instagram @the_heart_arts where their co-founders – art directors Eartha Robinson and two-time Emmy Award winner VernÃ©e Watson – run a wonderful and diverse program. For the studio / theater, there is a Yelp! page with photos of the place and you can follow them on Instagram @heart_dance_space to view photos and videos of the installation and send them a direct message for inquiries or to arrange a visit.