Category Archives: Awards

New Voices Auditions was amazing!

The 2018 New Voices Awards auditions were held at the WCCA TV studio on Tuesday, October 30th.  We had many talented singers who performed extremely well in front of judges, lights and cameras!

Our three judges, Amanda Carr, Cliff Goodwin and Victor Infante were impressed with each singer and had the difficult task of selecting the five contestants who will move on to the semi-finals.

Tune into WCCA TV channel 194 to watch the auditions as well as the semi-finals and the final performances.  These young voices will leave you in awe with their incredible talent.

The Contestants

The Judges

WCCA TV is Very Appreciative That We Have Been Awarded A Worcester Arts Council Grant for New Voices 2018!! Thank You Worcester Arts Council!!

Worcester Arts Council Announces

New Grants Awarded for 2018

Worcester, MA- City Manager Edward M. Augustus, Jr. and Samantha Fiakofi, chair of the Worcester Arts Council (WAC), have announced the award of 48 grants totaling $114,375 for cultural programs in Worcester.

The Worcester Arts Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The LCC Program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences, and humanities every year. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates a portion of these funds to each community including Worcester.

It is through programs like these that give access and assistance to Worcester’s creative community. This year WAC is announcing the recipients of funding for the 2018 grant cycle. Through an in depth selection process, WAC’s volunteer members reviewed numerous applications this fall during a series of meetings conducted to evaluate the overall quality of the proposed programs, their public benefit, viability and whether they met the 2018 local priorities for funding  which  included : Public Art, Children’s Programing, and Visual Arts.

This year WAC will award a total of $114,375 to 48 Worcester area applicants. The 2018 allocation also includes two $5,000 Artist Fellowships, awarded to individuals to assist in the funding of their endeavors in the arts, humanities and interpretative sciences. This year the Worcester Arts Council is proud to award Artist Fellowships to two local artists: James Dye and Jennifer Carey.

Samantha Fiakofi, Chair of the Worcester Arts Council said, “We are excited to announce our 2018 grant recipients. Each year we are impressed by the creativity and innovation WAC grant recipients bring to Worcester’s cultural community. This year’s projects will attract diverse audiences and hopefully inspire new projects throughout the city.”

Decisions about which activities to support are made at the community level by a board of municipally appointed volunteers. The members of the Worcester Arts Council are: Samantha Fiakofi (Chair), Meghan Hardy-Lavoie (Vice-Chair), Jacob Poplaski (Treasurer), Amanda Schall (Secretary), Thomas Conroy, Jose Castillo, Hansani Archibald, Hank Von Hellion.

City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. said, “I congratulate all the recipients who continue to enhance the creative vitality of our community. I also thank the Worcester Arts Council for its diligence in reviewing so many worthy submissions.”

Statewide, more than $3.3 million will be distributed by local cultural councils in 2018. Grants will support an enormous range of grass-roots activities: concerts, exhibitions, radio and video productions, field trips for schoolchildren, after-school youth programs, writing workshops, historical preservation efforts, lectures, First Night celebrations, nature and science education programs for families and town festivals. Nearly half of LCC funds support educational activities for young people.

The Worcester Art Council will seek applications again in the fall. For guidelines and complete information on the Worcester Art Council, please contact Lindiana Semidei, Staff Liaison to the Worcester Arts Council at 508-799-1400 x 31414 or by email at Applications and more information about the Local Cultural Council Program are available online at  Applications are due in October of 2019.


This year’s grants include:

2018 Worcester Arts Council Grant Awards
Applicant Project Title Award Amount
James Dye Fellowship $5,000
Jennifer Carey Fellowship $5,000
Worcester Arts Council Make Music Day $6,000
Girls Inc. of Worcester Girls Inc. Dear World: Voices of Worcester Girls Enhancement $3,500
Music Worcester Boston Brass Worcester Residency $5,000
Ascentria Community Services Inc. Worcester World Refugee Day $2,500
Greater Worcester Opera Hansel and Gretel Opera Workshop $400
Timothy Loftus A Musical Taste of Irish Culture $200
Valley Residents for Improvement, Inc. VRI’s Camp Freedom Summer Music Program $2,400
Worcester Art Museum Southeast Asia Artist-in-Residence Program $5,000
Worcester Youth Center Youth Center Mural $2,500
Woodland Academy Instant Alpha Art Show $2,693
Worcester Center for Crafts Family Experiences 2018 $2,000
Mihoko Wakabayashi Seed to Fashion $3,250
ArtsWorcester Teen Nights $3,500
Joy of Music Program Boys and Girls Club and Great Brook Valley Outreach $3,000
Worcester Arts Magnet School Paper Stain Glass and Glass Making $3,200
Black Heritage Festival/Stone Soup Black Heritage Juneteenth Festival $2,000
Worcester Chamber Music Society Peter and the Wolf: Free Family Concert $3,000
Worcester Public Library Visual Arts Instruction $2,000
Elder Services of Worcester Area, Inc. Rainbow Lunch and Supper Clubs $1,200
Refugee Artisans of Worcester Community Connections Through Indigenous Refugee Crafts $2,550
Main South Community Development Corporation Main South Pop-Up Plaza $3,000
EcoTarium Nature Explore LIVE! 2018 $2,370
Understanding New Identifiers To Empower Youth(UNITEY) UNITEY Culinary and Musical Arts Series $5,000
Elizabeth Wambui Takashi Murakami Theater Project $2,500
Worcester County Light Opera Company The Laramie Project $2,800
All Saints Church Graeme McCullough Afternoon Tunes $3,500
Vietnamese Community of Worcester County Vietnamese New Year Celebration $1,750
African Community Education Program Saturday Program Field Trips $1,478
Worcester Community Action Council Creative Connections – Poetic Pathways $2,800
Latino History Project of Worcester Latino History Week $2,100
Elm Park Community School The Moral of the Story:  Bringing Fables to Life Through Puppetry $280
Michelle Memnon 4th Annual Summer Gospel Fest $2,500
Southeast Asian Coalition of Central MA 15th Annual Asian Festival and 13th Moon Festival $2,500
Cinema Worcester Four Great Films from the 1950s/ Four Countries $504
Boys & Girls Club of Worcester Wall of Art $2,500
Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery, College of the Holy Cross Worcester Public Schools Outreach $250
YWCA Central Massachusetts Visual and Musical Arts for Pre-Kindergarten Students and Child Care Families $900
Audio Journal, Inc. Access to Culture for the Blind $1,250
Ariana Falk Worcester Bach Festival $1,350
Lynne McKenney Lydick To My Dearest: The Civil War Letters of General George Ward and Emily Ward $275
Cathy Weaver Taylor Luminaries in the Library $850
Elizabeth Bacon Clemente Children: The Child

Education Program of the Clemente Course in the Humanities

The Hanover Theatre Creative Drama Workshop $775
Worcester Community Cable Access, Inc. (WCCA TV) New Voices Awards 2018 $2,500
Worcester Earn-a-Bike, Inc. Stone Soup Public Art/Mural $750
Joseph Realbuto Therapeutic Arts for People with Disabilities $2,500
Total Awarded $114,375



About the Worcester Arts Council:

The Worcester Arts Council is a municipal body consisting of nine members appointed by the City Manager. The Council is charged with promoting the cultural affairs of the City of Worcester and allocating funds received by the Council for cultural projects and programs. The mission of the Worcester Arts Council is to promote excellence, access, education and diversity in the arts, humanities and interpretative sciences to improve the quality of life for Worcester residents and contribute to the economic vitality of our City. The Worcester Arts Council is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency. Additional information about the Worcester Arts Council can be found by visiting:


About the Massachusetts Cultural Council:

The Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) is a state agency that promotes excellence, access, education, and diversity in the arts, humanities, and interpretive sciences to improve the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents and contribute to the economic vitality of our communities. The Council pursues this mission through a combination of grant programs, partnerships, and services for nonprofit cultural organizations, schools, communities, and artists. For more information visit:



Michael Hirsh, MD Receives Lifetime Achievement Award for Injury Prevention Work

(Ft. Lauderdale FL, December 3, 2017) During Forging New Frontiers, the annual conference of the Injury Free Coalition for Kids this week, Michael P. Hirsh, MD, FACS, FAAP received The Coalition’s Lifetime Achievement Award recognizing his 30 years of work in the field of Injury Prevention. The Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics at UMass Medical School and Surgeon-in Chief of the UMass Memorial Children’s Medical Center in Worcester, MA. is also Division Chief of Pediatric Surgery and Trauma and Associate Surgical Director of the Trauma Center and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit.
His career has focused on the development and implementation of innovative interventions to prevent pediatric injury and address firearm injuries. Following the loss of his best friend to a firearm injury, he became the co-founder of Goods for Guns, a firearm exchange program that has taken more than 3,200 guns off the street over the last 15 years. In 2012, his prevention work led him to be invited to serve as the Medical Director for the Department of Public Health for the Central Massachusetts. Regional Public Health Alliance, a consortium of seven municipalities in Central Massachusetts including Worcester, New England’s 2nd largest city. Injury prevention is now one of the five top priorities of the regions Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) aiming to make the region the healthiest in New England by 2020.
Dr. Hirsh’s work has literally impacted hundreds of thousands of lives and he has assisted with the ushering dozens of people in the field of injury prevention. Injury Free Coalition for Kids Founder and Executive Director Dr. Barbara Barlow says she couldn’t think of anyone who deserved this award more than Dr. Hirsh. “I have worked with Dr. Hirsh much of his career and I have seen the impact he has made and the contributions he continues to make in the field of Injury Prevention,” Dr. Barlow said. Injury Free Board President Wendy Pomerantz, MD agrees. “Dr. Hirsch has done amazing work in preventing injuries to children in his own community and throughout the entire nation. His passion is palpable and contagious, and he is well deserving of this award!”
“Early on in my Pediatric Trauma experience I realized that without devoting a significant part of my energy to Prevention I would be relegated to running a MASH unit patching up injured kids and sending them back out to be injured again,” Dr. Hirsh explained. “The methodology of Dr. Barbara Barlow, the Founder and Executive Director of the Injury Free Coalition for Kids gave me the model to mimic and I was on my way. He went on to say this award is a wonderful recognition of that path having yielded some positive impacts.
Dr. Hirsh‘s work has established a number of programs that have been instrumental in improving the health and safety of children by preventing injuries both in his communities and in communities across the country as they have been immolated in other places. Among them are: gun buyback programs, teen driving programs, and Safety Street, a Mobile Safety Street program that mobilizes community facades to teach children about safety in their home, on the street and in their community. His commitment and programs have attained national recognition.
About the Injury Free Coalition for Kids®
The Injury Free Coalition for Kids is the place to turn for the country’s most effective venue for generating injury prevention research and community based programming. The Coalition is comprised of hospital-based, community-oriented programs whose efforts are anchored in research, education, and advocacy. It is made up of nearly 40 sites located in level I and II trauma centers in major metropolitan areas across the country. All of the sites are independent, programs driven by the Coalition’s mission: “Prevent Injury to Children.” The Coalition is the place to turn for physicians looking to make a difference.
Story contributed by E. Lenita Johnson




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WCCA TV is a regional leader serving Worcester’s community media public access needs and an anchor institution that stands for Media Democracy, Media Literacy and Creative Innovation. Learn Create and Connect at WCCA TV.

Since 1986, WCCA TV has always been a creative space and a place that has engaged people of all backgrounds in bringing the city to life through creative expression of storytelling, engaging community television, talk programming, music, dance, television journalism, dramatic arts and film/video making, public art and multimedia works, and to exercise free speech. It’s a space for everyone to get engaged in the arts in an active way.
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There is no denying WCCA TV is an anchor institution that stands for Media Democracy, Media Literacy and Creative Innovation.

For more information browse the WCCA TV website, watch our programming on Worcester cable channel 194 or contact Mauro DePasquale our Executive Director. We offer community volunteer memberships, special sponsor membership plans for businesses, workshops and training for ALL ages, and a whole lot more. Get involved, create, network, share your story, opinions, and fresh ideas on “THE PEOPLE’S CHANNEL” WCCA TV

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On December 11th, Hops and Harmony will Happen at Mechanics Hall!! Join With Your Friends and Colleagues in Singing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas” in a three-part Harmony with Plenty of Drinks and Food to Enjoy!

It’s a fun night of live music with audience participation!!
People in the community come to the event and enjoy a cash bar as
well as food concessions followed by having the crowd learn a
popular music song in a three part harmony. This process is video
recorded and then, following the video editing, is shared on WCCA TV
Channel 194 and online at

Click the Following Link to Purchase Tickets (General Admission $10):   Purchase Tickets