CalArts President Steven Lavine discusses the economic impact of the arts
July 23, 2013
by Jana Adkins
A study published in 2012 examined the economic impact of Santa Clarita’s arts community on the local economy.
Over the past decade, Santa Clarita residents, organizations and city representatives have made a conscious, planned effort to
ramp up the local arts and culture scene, to drive quality of life, economic activity and cultural tourism.
Santa Clarita nonprofit arts and culture organizations and their audiences spent a total of $11.4 million locally. The same group
supported more than 300 jobs and generated $9.6 million in household income to local residents. More than $1 million was
generated in local and state government revenue, as well, according to the study.
We spoke with Bob Kellar, mayor of Santa Clarita, Steven Lavine, president of California Institute of the Arts and Evy Warshawski,
director of the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at College of the Canyons.
How do the arts contribute to the economy?
STEVEN LAVINE: If you take the arts as a whole, it’s the fourth largest industry cluster in the state, employing something over
600,000 people in the state, generating about $3 billion in state taxes during the course of the year and producing an economic
output of over $230 billion per year.
The challenge is to think broadly about the arts. Every time you’re creating a web page, you’re using design skills, so we all live
in the midst of the arts skills every day.