ATLANTA — The College of the Arts is pleased to announce that the Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State University will join forces with the College of the Arts in a strategic merge that will further elevate the performing arts at Georgia State and in downtown Atlanta.

“The Rialto Center for the Arts is an essential part of the vibrant cultural and artistic life of our university, and a part of our identity as a creative, innovative institution,” said Interim Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Nicolle Parsons-Pollard. “This strategic move will strengthen our contributions to the creative life of our city, and also further cement Georgia State’s reputation as a place where the arts flourish.”

The union with the College of the Arts will open doors to new creative, administrative and educational resources for Rialto. This will also provide dynamic opportunities to activate cross-disciplinary collaborations between the Rialto and College of the Arts schools.

“As the college continues to grow, we are very excited to have Rialto Center for the Arts as part of our College of the Arts family,” said College of the Arts Founding Dean Wade Weast. “We look forward to consolidating our similar missions. Together, we can make the arts even more visible, vital and innovative.”

The Rialto Center for the Arts is Georgia State’s cultural centerpiece which recently celebrated its milestone 100th anniversary. Its mission is to advance creativity, innovation and the boundaries of imagination through engaging arts, education and entertainment. The nationally renowned arts programming is carefully curated to appeal to diverse audiences and represent a wide array of artistic styles and genres. The Rialto Series features national and international jazz artists, world music and dance, and Georgia State’s School of Music performances. Programming includes educational outreach programs to school students and the public, including the Rialto Jazz for Kids and the Feed Your Senses lunch series.

“Since opening in 1916, as the largest theater in the Southeast and Atlanta’s first movie house, the Rialto has a rich history in the downtown community,” said Rialto Center Director Lee Foster. “As we embark on this new era with the College of the Arts, we look forward to continuing to present world-class artists in our signature Rialto Series and supporting students along our ‘runway to mastery’ — from our Rialto Jazz for Kids middle school program to engaging the extraordinary students at Georgia State’s School of Music — to the pinnacle of mastery as professional artists and art aficionados.”

Established in 2016, the College of the Arts includes the Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design, the School of Film, Media & Theatre, the School of Music, the Center for Educational Partnerships and a partnership with the Creative Media Industries Institute (CMII).

The College of the Arts aims to inspire and empower students and faculty to excel in arts creation and scholarship at Georgia State University, one of the country’s most innovative and creative learning environments.


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