Center for Latter-day Saint Arts


Media contact: Alyssa Chard Gustafsson 801-828-5421



July 17, 2019 call for submissions

The Center is pleased to announce a call for submissions to dancers and choreographers to create works for the 2020 Center Festival to be held at Symphony Space in New York City. READ CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS.

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April 20, 2019 article - deseret news

The Association for Mormon Letters announces awards during its conference at the Latter-day Saint Institution of Religion at Berkeley, California. In the criticism category, the award went to Mormon Cinema: Origins to 1952 by Randy Astle, published by the Center. READ THE FULL ARTICLE


Spring, 2019 REVIEW - DIALOGUE

Critic Jennifer Champoux writes about the Mormon Arts Center publication, Nzambi (God), in the Spring 2019 issue of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, "Yet Nelson’s text adds a further richness to the art by explaining how de Melo’s artwork is influenced by both the political turmoil of his homeland and his personal religious faith."  READ THE FULL REVIEW


january 17, 2019 press release

NEW YORK, New York – January 17, 2019 – The Center for Latter-day Saint Arts, formerly known as the Mormon Arts Center, announced it will give 20 grants, awards and commissions to 40 different artists in 2019. The funding will support a wide range of the arts including works in film, literature, music, theater, dancer and visual arts. Three grants will be given to scholars focused on the study of art. “We are giving more in funding to individuals this year than we’ve ever been able to before,” said Richard Bushman, co-founder of the Mormon Arts Center. “These artists are creating incredible works of art that should be shared with the world. We hope these grants give them the leverage to do just that.” The recipients of these 2019 grants hail from the United States, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Argentina, Puerto Rico and Japan. Many of the projects the Center is sponsoring will be featured at the 2019 Center for Latter-day Saint Arts festival taking place June 28th and 29th in New York City. 

To see a full list of grantees and sponsored projects, see here.


December 14, 2018 ARTICLE

NEW YORK, New York – LaGuardia Community College writes an article about composer and professor Lisa DeSpain, whose “Toccata for Jazz Piano” was premiered by Scott Holden at the 2018 Mormon Arts Center Festival. Since the Festival, DeSpain has won a 2018 Barlow Commission for a 15-minute suite, “Symphonic Jazz Etude,” and she was named among the 2018 recipients of the OPERA America Discovery Grant for Female Composers. Her first opera, “That Hell-Bound Train”READ THE ARTICLE


september 28, 2018 press release

NEW YORK, New York – September 28, 2018 – The Mormon Arts Center is pleased to announce a Call For Submissions. It is open to scholars, curators, artists, performers, and others who desire to engage with the goals of the Mormon Arts Center to display and perform artwork by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in New York City and elsewhere, to publish scholarship and criticism about art of our culture to reach a wider public, and to establish a comprehensive archive of artwork by members of our faith, 1830 to the present. READ THE PRESS RELEASE


August 11, 2018 review

15 Bytes, Artistis of Utah interviews pianist Scott Holden and reviews his CD, The Unknown Galaxy: A Century of Mormon Music. Writer Maddie Blonquist describes the Mormon Arts Center's Carnegie Hall concert that led to the CD. Of the diversity of sounds labeled "Mormon," Holden says, "You can't pigeonhole God into only liking certain sounds." READ THE ARTICLE

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july 25, 2018 update

The Portuguese online publication Mercado writes, "Hildebrando de Melo expõe em Utah, Estados Unidos da América," about the exhibition, Nzambi (God) by Hildebrando de Melo and its journey from Columbia University for the Mormon Arts Center Festival to Brigham Young University.  READ THE ARTICLE (PORTUGUESE)


july 21, 2018 review- dialogue

Critic Sarah C. Reed writes about the Mormon Arts Center publication, Immediate Present, in the Summer 2018 issue of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, "Laura Allred Hurtado's essay 'The Immediate Present' introduces the volume and provides the necessary historical and critical context for the exhibition and the Mormon Arts Center Festival in general."  READ THE FULL REVIEW

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july 16, 2018 Feature - KSL-TV

Carole Mikita reports, "The second annual Mormon Arts Center Festival in New York City attracted Latter-day Saint artists from throughout the world. Some of the highlights of this year's festival included a concert at one of the city's iconic concert halls and the works of an artist from a southern African nation. Participants experienced art and faith of an international flavor." WATCH THE BROADCAST

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july 10, 2018 feature - church news

Morgan Jones writes, "NYC Mormon Arts Festival uncovers story of Elder McConkie's brother, highlights culture of LDS Church." "Elder Bruce R. McConkie of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles had a brother who at one point seemed more poised to become famous than the well-known Apostle. James W. McConkie was a composer who received his PhD from Columbia and studied in Paris with some of the most important classical music teachers of the 20th century." READ THE NEWS ARTICLE

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June 28, 2018 feature - salt lake tribune

 Jennifer Napier-Pearce and Peggy Fletcher Stack of the Salt Lake Tribune, interview Richard Bushman on their “Mormon Land” podcast in an episode titled, "Celebrating Arts the Mormon Way."  Peggy Fletcher Stack writes, "Art expresses and evokes deep human emotions, which makes it intimately connected to spirituality. It makes sense, then, for LDS artists to explore their faith through their creativity. In 2017, such links prompted a group of Latter-day Saints in New York City to launch the Mormon Arts Center Festival, which LDS author Terryl Givens called 'a seminal event in Mormonism's coming of age artistically.'"  LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

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june 26, 2018 feature - deseret news

Columnist Jenny Rollins previews the Mormon Arts Center Festival, "The Mormon Arts Center is holding its second annual festival in New York City, featuring artists from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints the world over, including four world premieres of new music and the performance of  'lost' pieces from well-known Mormon composers. The three-day festival will take place June 28-30 at the Italian Academy at Columbia University and will bring together people from Angola, Argentina, Canada, China, Kuwait, Spain and across the U.S."  READ THE FULL ARTICLE

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june 18, 2018 update

Brigham Young University College of Fine Arts and Communications posts about BYU faculty members participating in the Mormon Arts Center Festival. Amanda Shrum notes, "The second annual festival held by the Mormon Arts Center will take place June 28-30 at Columbia University in New York City. The festival will help fulfill the Mormon Arts Center's mission to display, perform and promote Mormon art. More than two dozen events will be featured, including a keynote address by laurel Thatcher Ulrich."   READ THE FULL ARTICLE


May 30, 2018 press release

NEW YORK CITY, New York – The Mormon Arts Center, a non-profit organization based in New York City, will host its second annual festival, entitled “Explorations,” from June 28th to 30th at the Italian Academy on the campus of Columbia University in New York City. The festival will feature the work of Mormon artists, musicians and scholars from around the globe.


March 27, 2018 review - dialogue

Critic Jacob Bender writes a review, "Our Artistic Potential," about the Mormon Arts Center publication The Kimball Challenge at Fifty: Mormon Arts Center Essays for the Spring 2018 edition of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought. He writes, "This collection is not intended to provide the final word on anything, but rather to stimulate the conversation, to keep it going, as we continue to wrestle with what it means to be a Mormon, to be an artist, and to be worth and neither at once."  READ THE FULL REVIEW - SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED

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september 27, 2017 feature - KSL-TV

KSL Arts and Religion Specialist Carole Mikita shares the humble beginning of a new arts movement in New York City and the talented individuals leading the charge. WATCH THE VIDEO FEATURE

March 3, 2018 update - association for mormon letters

The Association for Mormon Letters Awards announces that in the category of Criticism, The Kimball Challenge at Fifty: Mormon Arts Center Essays is a finalist.  READ THE ANNOUNCEMENT