We need to enjoy art for its own sake, not just for homework

Elizabeth Saubestre, Staff Writer

Art allows us to see things we otherwise wouldn’t be exposed to, and it allows us a break from the mundane.

I grew up very much a theatre kid. Theatre and dance allowed me access into worlds that I wouldn’t otherwise have been able to spend time in. This is an experience I wish everybody could have, including as consumers of art.

The arts are often looked down upon, or they are viewed as lesser domains. While it’s true that art doesn’t provide the same stability that other careers might provide, they should still be supported. Without supporting art, we won’t be able to enjoy art.

It seems like a common topic of conversation that art often isn’t as valued in schools as subjects such as math and sports. Maybe they just don’t draw enough attention. High school musicals are regarded very differently from high school football games, so why should they have as much attention directed towards them?

There is no shortage of people going to see shows, but they always seems to frequented by an older population. This might be an issue of free time, it might be an issue of available money, or it might be an issue of interest.

While there is no age limit to being a patron of the arts, I think it’s important for younger audiences to take part in their local art scene as well.

If the enjoyment of art stops with a certain audience, then art will stop altogether. It is, to a certain extent, a business, and businesses do need people’s interest in order to continue staying open. If younger audiences have no interest in art, then there will be no need for a business that already faces a significant lack of funding as it is.

Not only that, but it will open a whole new world of art. I am of the firm opinion that people should be able to connect to the art that they are experiencing, and so if theaters only see a certain demographic in their audience, that might mean that only that certain demographic can connect to the work. This means that there is ultimately work not being shown.

It seems that when college-age students go to see various productions, it is often because they need to write a paper. While it is a good thing that they are doing their homework, it does have a tendency to change the atmosphere of the production.

It is different to have a group of students watch a play and be more focused on taking notes then what is happening on stage. It seems like people aren’t interested in seeing a performance solely for the purpose of seeing a performance, or trying to enjoy or understand new things. I wish that more people were able to go to the theatre solely for the sake of enjoying it.

Maybe art isn’t accessible enough.

Theatre tickets are often more expensive than movie tickets. I do understand not wanting to spend your hard-earned money on theatre tickets, but there are ways to get around for. For example, with a student activities pass, you can go see previews for free.

There is no lack of art in Santa Barbara. Since moving here, I have noticed that Santa Barbara has a rich theater scene, one that is ingrained in its history and has become known as the historic theater district. Many of the schools in Santa Barbara County have a variety of well-known and well-loved productions.

Art is worthwhile and should be seen. People who are in the arts should be supported, even if their career of choice isn’t as highly regarded as some other careers in our society.

Art matters. Art is deteriorating, art is underfunded, and it should be supported.