The Flint Cultural Center
It is dedicated to promoting area residents with an array of cultural, scientific, and artistic experiences and promotes understanding of the diverse cultures reflected in the Greater Flint community.
The institutions located on the grounds of the FCC are the Sloan Museum, Buick Gallery & Research Center, Flint Institute of Arts, Robert T. Longway Planetarium, The Whiting, Flint Youth Theatre, and the Flint Institute of Music. As well as home to the Flint Symphony Orchestra and the Flint School of Performing Arts.
Discover Genesee County history, historic automobiles and hands-on science at Sloan Museum. Dramatic settings, video programs and hundreds of artifacts and photographs portray the area’s tumultuous 20th century history, including the Flint Sit-Down Strike of 1936-37. Explore Wisner’s Whizbang Emporium, an interactive gallery where young and old can play together. Wonder at toys from the past as your little ones shop for food in the miniature grocery store and cook in the play kitchen. Take the wheel in the climb-on ambulance, play a board game, or discover a book together.
Longway Planetarium completed a $1.8 million renovation in 2015, including a state-of-the-art Digistar 6 projector. Incorporating a new 16-meter dome, new epicentric seating, barrier-free access, and a digital 15,000 watt Dolby 7.1 surround sound system, the full dome theater accommodates a wide range of programs – from lectures to film series to live performances. Featuring 129 seats under an impressive 52 1/2-foot dome, Longway Planetarium is Michigan’s largest planetarium. For more than half a century, Flint’s Longway Planetarium has been a major resource of science education for students and families, bringing the stars to more than 2.5 million people since opening in 1958.
Flint Institute of Music
The Flint Institute of Music serves as a pillar in the Flint community, providing music, dance ad theatre for all ages and abilities. Tracing its roots back 100 years to the creation of the Flint Community Music Association, founded by J. Dallas Dort, the FIM has grown into the institution it is today and continues to evolve to meet the needs of area residents.
That dedication to improving the community through the arts has only strengthened over the last century. Today the Flint Institute of Music reaches more than 300,000 people annually through lessons, classes, outreach programs, performances and concerts by its three program areas the Flint School of Performing Arts, Flint Symphony Orchestra and Flint Youth Theatre.
All three entities come together in the continued mission to make community based arts programming available for all.
Flint Institute of Arts
The Flint Institute of Arts is the second largest art museum in the State of Michigan and one of the largest museum art schools in the nation. Each year, more than 160,000 people visit the FIA’s galleries (free of charge) and participate in FIA programs and services.
For more than 85 years, the FIA has been responsible for acquiring, protecting and presenting a collection of art and artifacts spanning continents and 5,000 years. The world renowned collection, which now exceeds 8,000 objects, is significant for its depth of important European and American paintings and sculptures, 15th century to the present, and its extensive holdings of decorative and applied arts including important ethnographic study collections dating back five millennia.
The FIA Art School runs at full capacity from 9 am to 9 pm with an annual enrollment of more than 1,700 students. The Art School remains dedicated to the educational enlightenment of the public through formal studio instruction in drawing, painting, photography, mixed media, printmaking, ceramics, glass mosaic, fiber, and metal sculpture. The school also provides summer camps for youth, free family activities, and a pre-college portfolio development program for gifted high school students.
Flint Symphony Orchestra
Celebrating over 100 years, the Flint Symphony Orchestra (FSO) is building upon its rich tradition of excellence while inspiring the future with powerful live performances, prominent guest artists and engaging education initiatives, all under the direction of world renowned Music Director, Enrique Diemecke. Together with professional musicians who travel from across North America to perform in Flint, they are sharing music for all ages and backgrounds.
Beyond its classical concert offerings at The Whiting, the Orchestra and smaller ensembles also perform for audiences during the summer months in venues across the city as part of its free summer concert series as well as its educational and community partnership programs-all of which create greater access and engagement with classical music as an art form, encourage music-making and improve the quality of life in our community.
For ticket and performance information, visit our website, theFSO.org or call 810-237-3122.
Flint Youth Theatre
For more than 60 years, Flint Youth Theatre (FYT) has been committed to making quality live theatre accessible, relevant and memorable for all audiences. Flint’s only professional theatre for all ages serves the community by offering entertainment that nurtures a love of theatre and develops a new generation of theatergoers.
Through performance productions that range from the classics and Shakespeare to community-focused pieces and new works, a comprehensive curriculum of theatre classes, summer workshops, vigorous outreach programs and guest artist performances, FYT teaches young people skills not only essential for performance on the stage, but even more critical to their success in school, work and social settings.
Through theatre, the students, actors and audience celebrate the joy and magic of live performance, and of life itself.
For ticket and performance information, visit our website, theFYT.org or call 810-237-1530.
Flint School of Performing Arts
Every year, nearly 3,500 students from 13 counties across mid-Michigan discover an amazing world of music and dance at the Flint School of Performing Arts (FSPA)–one of the nation’s top 10 largest community schools of the arts.
Offering group classes and individualized lessons in over 25 instruments and multiple dance genres, Michigan’s largest community school of the arts has assembled a dedicated and committed group of faculty members, many of whom hold advanced degrees in their respective disciplines and are experienced in working with students of all ages and ability levels.
By providing the most respected music and dance programs in the area, the FSPA unleashes creativity and brings joy, confidence and a sense of accomplishment to its students, letting them know that everyone – regardless of artistic ability – can enjoy and participate in the arts.
For more information including hours of operation, registration and performances, visit our website, theFSPA.org or call 810-238-1350 x3.
Greater Flint Arts Council
The Greater Flint Arts Council (GFAC) is a non-profit organization whose purpose is “to be a catalyst of, and advocate for, increased artstic and cultural enrichment in our ethnically diverse community.” The Council strives to promote and celebrate the arts-building new partnerships and to lay foundations of cultural growth for all the arts in our community. Our primary service area is Genesee County. We also serve communities adjacent to Genesee County that are part of the greater Flint region.
Located in the heart of downtown Flint, GFAC is a regional regranting agency for Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs. We provide many other services for the arts, from arts information services through newsletters, to providing new artists with both rehearsal space and a community voice heard by everyone up through the national government. GFAC is also a presenter of the arts, producing annually many exhibitions, concerts, festivals and events.
The Whiting/Capitol Theatre
Providing facilities, programs and services to promote and support the presentation of the best regional, national and international performing artists, The Whiting Auditorium & Capitol Theatre are the premier performing arts venues of Genesee County.
The Whiting Auditorium & Capitol Theatre are proud to offer a variety of education and engagement activities to Genesee County groups, teachers, and students. Our list of educational opportunities is continually growing and provides lifelong learning programs that includes music, culture, language, and theater activities with touring and local performers.
Flint Institute of Music
- FIM is on the original site of the J. Dallas Dort Home and Music Center
- FIM is the home of the Flint Symphony Orchestra
- FIM is the home of the Flint School of Performing Arts
- Flint Youth Theatre became part of FIM in 2009
Flint Symphony Orchestra
- Music Director, Enrique Diemecke has been at the helm of the FSO for over 25 years
- Since it was formed a century ago, the FSO has had only 7 conductors
- The FSO has had 15 concertmasters over the last 100 years
- The FSO has a school outreach program, The Troubadours, which educates and entertains more than 37,000 students annually
- The FSO offers a free summer concert series in city and surrounding parks
- The Orchestra has players who have been performing with the FSO for more than 40 years
Flint School of Performing Arts
- The FSPA is one of the nation’s top 10 and Michigan’s number 1 largest community schools of the arts.
- The FSPA offers classes for students from newborn to 101 years old
- The FSPA has 53 faculty holding 89 advanced degrees from universities around the world
- FSPA faculty have performed with Natalie Cole and Bobby McFerrin.to name just two
- FSPA offers more than 100 different classes and lessons annually
- FSPA faculty have played on Broadway and with New York Philharmonic.to name just a few
Flint Youth Theatre
- FYT collaborates with renowned artists and designers from New York to Los Angeles
- FYT has performed at the Nation’s Capitol for the U.S. Department of Education
- FYT has multiple alumni on Broadway and other major stages across the country
- An FYT staff member has performed improv with Jack Black
- FYT houses two uniquely different theatre performing spaces under one roof
- FYT puts on more than 100 performances annually
The Whiting/Capitol Theatre:
- The Whiting Auditorium serves 15,000 individuals through educational programming each year
- The Whiting Auditorium hired 19 Genesee County High School students to participate in their 2016/2017 Youth Usher Program
- The Whiting Auditorium works with local non-profit organizations to provide free tickets to Genesee County Families
- The Whiting Auditorium opens their lobby for special events, providing fun activities for local families
- The Whiting Auditorium works with Genesee County Schools to bring in professional performing artists to do workshops – previous workshops include Shakespeare, Literature, Magic, and more!
- Johnny Cash’s last live public performance was at The Whiting
- The Whiting Auditorium has brought in an array of stars to Genesee County – BB King, Johnny Cash, Huey Lewis, Clint Black, Dave Chappelle, and Halestorm, among others
- The Whiting Auditorium is currently undertaking the reopening and restoration of Flint’s Historic Capitol Theatre
- With approximately 100 events of varying sizes projected per year, the revitalized Capitol Theatre is expected to attract more than 60,000 visitors to Genesee County annually.
The Greater Flint Arts Council
- Recognized by the State of Michigan as the official arts council for Genesee County, serving Genesee County since 1967. Founded in coordination with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Michigan Council for the Arts, in collaboration with the movement to create a national web of arts services organizations.
- Have re-granted more than $1 Million in mini-grants to organizations in Genesee, Shiawassee and Lapeer Counties as the regional representatives for Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.
- Provide professional exhibition opportunities to more than 500 Michigan artists annually.
- Provide professional exhibition opportunities to more than 250 Genesee County student artists annually.
- Provide paying performance opportunities for more than 500 Genesee County musicians annually.
- Producers of the Flint Jazz Festival, Tunes at Noon Festival and Flint Festival of Quilts, attracting more than 20,000 visitors annually.
- Founders of the famous downtown Flint ARTWALK, attracting more than 36,000 visitors annually.
- Program and career consultants for artistic professional development.
- Have funded more than 30,000 hours of artists in schools K-12.
- Have lead Genesee County through 5 Community Cultural Plans.
- Founders of the Parade of Festivals marketing and incubator program for local festivals, serving more than 750,000 visitors to Genesee County annually.
- Maintain the event website for Genesee County; geneseefun.com, with 215,000 followers who visit the site 1.8 million times annually.
- Commissioned more than 200 works of public art by Michigan artists throughout Genesee County.
- Field information / referral inquiries for more than 250,000 residents and visitors annually.
- McCree Theatre was established in 1970 as a result of a needs assessment conducted by the Genesee County Model Cities Program.
- McCree Theatre is named in honor of the City of Flint’s first African American Mayor and first African
- American Mayor of a major city in the United States, Floyd J. McCree.
- Over the Course of its 48 year history, the theatre has told the African American story to thousands of theatre patrons of various ethnicities via hundreds of plays, musicals, and dance concerts.
- McCree Theatre has served as a training ground for many local professional performing artists; i.e. Bruce Bradley (Professional Actor/Dancer and Director of the Tapology dance program); Sheila Miller-Graham (Director/Choreographer, Creative Expression Dance Studio); Lavern Ross (nationally known visual artist); Brenda Glasschild (former dancer in numerous Broadway plays and member of the Dance Theatre of Harlem); Bryan McCree (professional comedian); Keon Atkins (Tenor Soloist with the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra); the late Charles Michael Moore (nationally known playwright); and Anderson Johnson (Director and Instructor at the historic Negro Ensemble Company).
- McCree Theatre has performed its violence prevention play, Graffiti Chronicles, decrying youth bullying and violent behavior while instilling a message of peace and love into thousands of elementary and middle school students since its inception in 2008.
- McCree Theatre is the only theatre in the entire State of Michigan that tells the African American story with consistent Seasons of plays specific to our African American cultural heritage.
- McCree Theatre has collaborated with Flint Community Players to produce the musical, Dreamgirls, and with Flint Youth Theatre to produce, The Middle Passage.
- Berston is named after Neil Jamison Berston, a developer who purchased the land around the center, after he moved from out west in the 1890’s
- State of the Art when it was built in 1923
- First Center in Genesee County integrated in the 1930’s
- FOB is the home of Creative Expression Dance Studio which has been house at Berston for 35 years
- Creative Expression Dance Recital is performed the last Saturday of April each year for 35 years
- Tapology started out of Berston Field House
- FOB is the Home of The Chosen Few Art Council
- FOB is the Home of the Berston Bicycle Club
- FOB is the Home of FWC Berston Club, that trained two time Olympic Gold Medalist Claressa Shields
- FOB has a state of Art Success Center ( Literacy Room) and small Library open to the public
- FOB is a YMCA Safe Places site