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Secretary of State Announces Master Folk Artists to Serve in Apprenticeship Program

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Florida Department of State
Kurt S. Browning
Secretary of State

For Immediate Release
January 13, 2009

Tina Bucuvalas

Secretary of State Announces Master Folk Artists to Serve in Apprenticeship Program

Secretary of State Kurt S. Browning announces the selection of five folk artists to serve as masters in the 2008-2009 Florida Folklife Apprenticeship Program. They are Chinese zheng musician Ann Yao (Orlando), Irish flute and whistle musician Lawrence Reeves (Gainesville), Cuban batá drummer Luis Ezequiel Torres (Miami), Haitian storyteller Liliane Nerette Louis (Sebastian), and Indian rangoli artist Jaya Radhakrishnan (Newberry).

"Floridians ensure the future of the state's cultural vitality by continuing community-based folklife such as traditional crafts, music, dance, storytelling, and occupational arts," explained Secretary Browning. "The master folk artists in the Florida Folklife Apprenticeship Program have demonstrated a valuable commitment to Florida's rich and diverse traditional culture."

The Department of State's Folklife Apprenticeship Program fosters the continuation of Florida folk arts by supporting masters who teach selected apprentices. "Apprenticeship is a time-honored system by which folk arts are learned from recognized masters," Secretary Browning said. Under the program, each master artist works intensively with one or more apprentices during a period of six or eight months. Program support consists of honoraria to the masters and apprentices to cover expenses for lessons and supplies.

To apply for the Florida Folklife Apprenticeship Program, master artists should be known in their community as expert practitioners of a valued, traditional art form. Each apprentice must have demonstrated an aptitude for and a commitment to the art form he or she wishes to study and an involvement with the community that sustains the tradition.

The Folklife Apprenticeship Program is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts' Folk and Traditional Arts Program. For further information about the Department of State's Folklife Apprenticeship Program, contact Tina Bucuvalas, Folklife Apprenticeship Program Coordinator, Bureau of Historic Preservation, Division of Historical Resources, 500 S. Bronough St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-0250, or call 850.245.6333 or 1-800-847-PAST.

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