Friday, September 22, 2017

Contact: Mike Journee
208-972-8527 |

Mayor Bieter Names Global Lounge and Morrison Center as 2017 Cultural Ambassadors

Mayor David Bieter on Thursday named Global Lounge, founder of the World Village Festival, and the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts, Idaho’s premier performing arts center located on the campus of Boise State University, as the City of Boise’s cultural ambassadors for a term of two years. As part of the recognition, Global Lounge and the Morrison Center will act as Boise’s honorary representatives to the world.

“Our core goal with the Cultural Ambassador program is to celebrate the public expression of culture in our city. I believe that our recipients this year share this in remarkable ways,” Mayor Bieter said. “Everyone knows that the best way to get to know your neighbor is to throw a party and no one does that better than Global Lounge. As a major destination for the world’s top talent, the Morrison Center plays an important role in sharing Boise’s unique cultural scene with audiences around the country and beyond. Both organizations truly capture the essence of Boise’s vibrant and diverse cultural community and contribute to making Boise the most livable city in the country.”

Established by Dayo Ayodele in 2006, Global Lounge was established to fill a need to educate others about the diversity of our expanding community. For the last three years, the organization has put on World Village Festival, a three-day multicultural celebration in Capitol Park, which is free to the public. Six thousand visitors attended in June this year and more than a dozen nations were represented. Beyond the festival, Global Lounge provides cultural enrichment programs for the Boise School District, the YMCA, Ada County libraries, and was a signature feature of the BOISE 150 sesqui-party.

“Global Lounge is honored and energized by this incredible opportunity to partner with the City of Boise as Cultural Ambassadors!” said Global Lounge founder Dayo Ayodele. “Boise is home to a vibrant and rich cultural community and we cannot wait to discover new ways to support and share the artistic talents and traditions of all who call Boise home.”

Since 1984, the Morrison Center has showcased national and international artists in the performing arts while providing growth opportunities for local arts groups. Over 200 bookings and 150,000 patrons from all over the state and country flow through its doors every year. Artists from around the world visit each year – from performing artists to operations staff tech-ing a Broadway show before it goes on tour; as such, they become an ambassador for the city and state. Casts and crews eat in local restaurants, stay in hotels, and ultimately help spread the good word about the city’s hospitality. In 2016 the center hosted and or self-presented 27 free, public events for over 30,000 patrons.

“Great cities are centered around the performing arts and the venues that support them. We are very fortunate to be located in a wonderful city that recognizes the immense value of the Morrison Center, and to have one of the most impressive theaters in the country available to us on our campus,” stated Boise State University President Bob Kustra. “Boise State’s theatre arts, dance, music programs and more have access to the very best stage, as well as talented performers and guests from all over the world. The Morrison Center continues to be a point of pride for our university, and we are thrilled with this recognition from the City of Boise.”

“From the outset, the Center’s founders wanted the Morrison Center to be Idaho’s premier performing arts center and to be known as the “People’s Theatre,” said Morrison Center Executive Director James Patrick. “This designation as Cultural Ambassador is an important stamp of approval and a testament to our founders’ amazing vision and tenacity. As Velma Morrison was known for saying, “Building the Morrison Center was too right to be wrong.”

Mayor Bieter and Terri Schorzman, director of the city’s Department of Arts and History, made the announcement at the 2017 Mayor’s Awards for Excellence in Arts & History on Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017. The City of Boise Cultural Ambassador program is designed to share Boise’s cultural and creative community with other cities across the globe and foster connection to global audiences. The department of arts and history manages the program, and the Boise City Mayor presents the honorific title. Past recipients include Treefort Music Fest, Anthony Doerr, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, and Trey Mcintyre Project.



PHOTO CAPTION: Mayor Bieter congratulates the City of Boise’s 2017 Cultural Ambassadors, Global Lounge and the Morrison Center. (L to R) James Patrick, executive director of the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts, Mayor David Bieter, Dayo Ayodele, executive director of Global Lounge, Girish Cherussery, president of Global Lounge, Donna Kovaleski, communications with Global Lounge.


About the Boise City Dept. of Arts & History

The mission of the Department of Arts & History is to enhance Boise by providing leadership, advocacy, education, services, and support for arts and history in order for people to create, engage and connect with the community. More information:

About Global Lounge


About the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts

Located on the campus of Boise State University, the 2,037-seat Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts is Idaho's premier performing arts center. Nestled on the banks of the Boise River, with a panoramic view of the city, parks and foothills, the Center's 10-story stage house is a recognizable fixture of the Capitol's picturesque skyline. The realization of a life-long dream of Harry W. Morrison, and championed by his widow, Velma, the Center opened its doors on April 7, 1984. Today the Center is recognized as a major destination for arts and culture, annually hosting hundreds of live entertainment and arts education offerings that serve to enrich the lives of patrons of all ages. As a Boise State affiliate, the Center is a non-profit organization supported by ticket sales, facility rentals, donations and the generous support of the Morrison Center Endowment Foundation, Inc. For more information on our programs, or to find out how you can play an active role in our ongoing success as a donor or volunteer, please visit us at: