Cultural Alliances...are they more than something you see on a fly ridden beach on reruns of "Survivor"?

A while back, I asked, "Just what is it the Cultural Alliance of Milwaukee does?"

You also asked questions related to my question. Need proof? Here are some of your probing thoughts:

* I would like to know the difference between UPAF and the Cultural Alliance and what are some of this organization's goals.

* Since this is NOT a fundraising organization...who is paying the salaries of the staff?

* Ask Christine (Christine Harris, the Executive Director of the Cultural Alliance of Milwaukee) what her salary is, and ask her if she feels that she deserves it. No, really.

* Ask what they plan on doing with all the detailed financial information they want all the arts groups to send them.

* Ask if the monies currently used to fund the Cultural Alliance would be better used if equally distributed to all the arts groups in MKE.

* Do we really need another group whose mission (from what I can tell) is to justify the arts' existence to people who couldn't care less. At some point can we all agree that the arts have a purpose? Now, if they could get us more exposure and funding- that would be something!

* As soon as you find out what the Cultural Alliance does, please, please let me know. I called them about a legal matter that could affect the entire theatre community and they "just didn't have the staff" to pursue it. I'd love to know what they have enough staff to do.


From the tenure of these questions I can deduce that readers of Artsy Schmartsy kind of have a chip on their shoulder about the Cultural Alliance of Milwaukee.

And, from my insider knowledge as a member of the local arts community, I also know that many of my fellow colleagues carry that chip, too. The prevailing thought is that this group is just another paper pushing supposed do-gooder collective that forces countless surveys and excel spreadsheets into the work flow of already overworked arts group employees.

Now we all have a chance to find out what's what.

I'll be meeting the Christine Harris, Executive Director of the Cultural Alliance of Milwaukee, on Tuesday, September 9 to get the heart of the matter.

So, you got questions, I have the means to get answers. Post your question here or e-mail them to jonathanwest@artsyschmartsy.com.

I'm like a vulture for culture on this one.