Leon Bates lectures for the fifth annual "Art Works for Virginia" and performs with the Richmond Symphony on Jan. 20 and 22 

Networking Opportunity

A prime-time player for major symphonies will be making his way to Richmond in support of the arts. Leon Bates, a native of Philadelphia, is one of America's leading pianists. Bates has played with numerous major symphonies, including the New York Philharmonic and the National Symphony. While in Richmond, Bates will give a lecture on Martin Luther King Day as part of a preconference luncheon for the fifth annual "Art Works for Virginia" conference. On Jan. 20 and 22, Bates will perform with the Richmond Symphony in the Masterworks series. At the Jan. 15 preconference luncheon, Bates will talk about the role of the arts in celebrating the dignity and humanity of all Americans and about the contributions of African-Americans to contemporary music in Virginia. The Jan. 16 "Artworks for Virginia" conference will be an opportunity for artists, curators, board and staff leaders of arts organizations, and arts educators in Virginia to get together and share ideas, says Robin Cleveland, spokeswoman for the Virginia Commission for the Arts. The conference will be held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Sixth and East Canal streets in Richmond and will cover a variety of topics including trends in fund-raising, "virtual" field trips to museums and examples of model community art projects around the state. A roundtable discussion of the future of jazz in the state will be available for jazz performers and educators. Also, curators will have their own roundtable discussion to share information about upcoming exhibitions and special projects, Cleveland says. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, the Richmond Jazz Society and the Virginia Arts Presenters are other sponsors. The preconference luncheon with Bates will cost $15, and the conference will cost $35. To register for the conference or for more information call 225-3132 or visit the Virginia Commission of the Web site: http://www.artswire.org/vacomm/artwork2001A.htm

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