2019 Governor’s Awards for the Arts

Fri. Sep 27, 2019 7:00pm - 9:00pm EDT
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Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
2019 Governor’s Awards for the Arts

Friday, September 27
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
August Wilson African American Cultural Center

The 2019 Governor’s Awards for the Arts is sold out!

We're pleased with such an immense response from the community, but understand that there are others who are interested in attending. Limited overflow seating is available to watch a livestream of the awards ceremony on the second floor of the August Wilson African American Cultural Center, where you’ll still be able to participate in the after-party activities. Tickets for overflow seating are now closed. However, you are still welcome to join us. We simply can't guarantee overflow seating.

For the first time since 1997, the Governor’s Awards for the Arts will be hosted in Pittsburgh, honoring five outstanding Pennsylvania artists, arts organizations and cultural leaders who have made significant contributions to the advancement of the arts. Governor Tom Wolf will present the awards on September 27 at 7 p.m. at the August Wilson African American Cultural Center (AWAACC) in downtown Pittsburgh.

The host committee for the Governor’s Awards for the Arts includes the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, the August Wilson African American Cultural Center, and the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. Private contributions support the ceremony, reception, award objects and related expenses.

The Governor’s Awards for the Arts are administered by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency under the Office of the Governor. Read more about the awards at www.arts.pa.gov.

SCHEDULE – 2019 Governor’s Awards for the Arts
All events are free and open to the public.

4 - 7 p.m. – Block party in front of the AWAACC, featuring DJ Nate Da Barber, the Funky Fly Project, and Hill Dance Academy Theatre.
5:30 - 10 p.m. – Gallery Crawl in the Cultural District
7 - 8:30 p.m. – Governor’s Awards for the Arts awards ceremony. RSVP is required.
8:30 - 10 p.m. – Ceremony after-party for all attendees in the AWAACC lobby, featuring jams from DJDBO, a cash bar, and an iconic Pittsburgh cookie table.
10 p.m. and beyond – Continue exploring Pittsburgh’s Cultural District and the Crawl After Dark


Vanessa German – Artist of the Year: Internationally-renowned visual and performance artist known for her explorations of the power of art and love as a transformative force in communities and neighborhoods. She is the founder of Love Front Porch and the ARThouse, community arts initiatives for the children of Homewood. Her work is in private and public collections around the country. German is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2018 Don Tyson Prize from Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

Roger Humphries Sr. – Lifetime Achievement in the Arts: Renowned Pittsburgh jazz percussionist, educator and philanthropist who has played with a host of musical legends and released multiple albums. He began playing the drums at age three and played at Carnegie Hall by the age of 16. Humphries was the first and longest serving percussion instructor at the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts High School (CAPA), taught at the University of Pittsburgh, and conducted clinics at Slippery Rock University and Mellon Jazz Masters. In the spring of 2019, Humphries was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from West Virginia Wesleyan College.

Joe Negri – Lifetime Achievement in the Arts: Beloved Pittsburgh jazz artist and composer who began playing the guitar as a child. Negri taught music at the University of Pittsburgh for 49 years, as well as at Carnegie Mellon and Duquesne universities. He has released six albums, including a 2010 release with the pianist Michael Feinstein. In 2019, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust presented Negri with the JazzLive Legacy Award. Negri is also well-known to many for his regular appearances as Handyman Negri on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.

Rock Lititz – Creative Industries: Located in Lititz, Lancaster County, Rock Lititz is a one-of-a-kind production community that supports creativity within the live event industry. Founded in 2014, the purpose-built 96-acre campus brings together top production-based vendors and resources to enhance creative partnership. It has grown to include a hotel, several multi-tenant facilities, walking trails, community space, and more. Rock Lititz, which continues to expand today, has spurred the creation of a variety of jobs in the technical and performing arts.

Mary Brenholts – Arts Leadership & Service: As the director of Artists in Schools and Communities at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts for more than 20 years, Brenholts has facilitated hundreds of school and community-based artist residencies. Brenholts, who has worked with hundreds of Pittsburgh area artists over the years, has developed a reputation as a passionate advocate for arts in education, as well as for the stellar quality of her work and groundbreaking practices in residency development.



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Venue Details
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August Wilson African American Cultural Center 980 Liberty Ave
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15222
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