A voice for Salt Lake City

By By Matt Gardner and By Matt Gardner

By Matt Gardner

Robin Pratt, administrative director of the Utah Cultural Alliance (UCA), compares the mission of UCA to the film “A Day Without a Mexican.” “What if there was a day without arts and culture?” she asked.

What if there were no groups to protect our arts organizations? What kind of Utah would we inhabit?

Through public awareness and advocacy, the UCA-which began in the ’80s as the Utah Citizens for the Arts-acts as a voice for Utah’s cultural community.

“Artists who paint, sculpt or whatever and don’t have the time, the energy or the knowledge to go up and advocate for cheap apartments like Artspace will appreciate the Utah Cultural Alliance. Our job is to say to the Legislature, ‘Hello, we are still here,'” Pratt said.

UCA was instrumental in the passage and development of the Zoo, Arts and Parks (ZAP) tax, which gives one-tenth of 1 percent of sales tax to fund zoos, arts and parks in Utah.

“Part of (our) focus is to guard that and this mission is ongoing,” Pratt said.

The UCA also seeks “to promote the economic and social significance of cultural activities in Utah,” she said.

The awareness that UCA offers can be beneficial to students who wish to enter into the arts.

“There are a ton of organizations that people don’t know about. So, what happens is they move to other cities to further their careers or educations without realizing what Salt Lake has to offer. We can keep the students’ awareness on what goes on in Salt Lake. I’m not a college student, but I had never heard of half these organizations until I began working here,” she said.

Students don’t have to be affiliated with UCA for these benefits; they just need to be added to the e-mail notification list, which can be found at [email protected]